SALVATION OR REDEMPTION?
Bertrand L. Comparet
For a long time the churches have been preaching the
gospel of salvation and forgetting, or even denying there is anything else in
the Bible. It is time for you who are interested in this message to consider
fully a more important gospel; the gospel of redemption, for this one
affects you. Without at least salvation a person has nothing, for he
would have no life beyond this present one. On the other hand, just what does he
get by salvation? In the Old Testament, four Hebrew words have been translated
salvation. The root meaning of all four words is simply safety, deliverance from
danger or destruction. In the New Testament, two Greek words are also translated
salvation and these also have the same root meaning. By salvation one gains
life, he is delivered from death, but there is nothing stated to indicate on
what level or standard that life will be. That question must be settled by
something more than just being saved and undoubtedly, the matter of rewards for
a meritorious life enters into it.
I want to teach you about the greatest hope and
opportunity set before you, redemption, which is a very different thing
for which different words with different meanings are used. To redeem is to
buy back something you formerly possessed. If I had enough money, I
could buy everything in Los Angeles, but no matter how much money I had,
I couldn't redeem anything in Los Angeles because nothing there was
formerly mine. Why is it so important to know about getting back something that
was formerly ours? Because Yahshua has told us that when the events which we now
see happening in the world begin to come to pass, then look up and lift up your
heads, for your redemption draweth nigh. Let's find out about that.
Yahweh set up the rules for it in the Book of
Leviticus. If a man became poor and had to sell or mortgage his homestead,
he did not loose it forever. He or his kinsmen could redeem it or Yahweh would
redeem it for him in the jubilee. Leviticus 25:25-28 records, "If
thy brother be waxen poor and hath sold away some of his possessions and if any
of his kin come to redeem it, then he shall redeem what his brother hath sold.
And if the man hath none to redeem it and himself be able to redeem it, then let
him count the years of the sale thereof and restore the over plus unto the man
to whom he sold it, that he may return it into his possessions. But if he shall
not be able to restore it to him, then that which is sold shall remain in the
hand of him who bought it until the year of jubilee and in the jubilee it shall
go out and he shall return it unto his possessions".
Four Hebrew words, chiefly the word gaw-al, are used for redeem
or redemption. They have the meaning to set free, by repaying or
avenging. Two of them also mean separation and the word chiefly used gaw-al also
means the next of kin, the person who has the right to redeem. Where the owner
has lost his possession by sale or foreclosure and in his poverty cannot redeem
his own property, it can be redeemed for him, but only by one whom himself has
the right of inheritance as next of kin. For example, when the prophet Jeremiah
was in prison in Jerusalem, his nephew asked him to redeem some land. Jeremiah
chapter 32 tells the story. Where there were many kinsmen, only the nearest
kinsman had the right to redeem, but if he could not or would not, then the
right passed to the next in line. In Ruth chapters 3 & 4 this is
illustrated. Boaz could not redeem Naomi's land until he first asked a nearer
kinsman, who refused, leaving Boaz the right of redemption.
So it is with the redemption of our lost glory, we cannot
do it and no man can do it for us. Psalm 49:7 records, "None of them
can by any means redeem his brother, nor give to Yahweh a ransom for him".
Our nearest kinsman is our God Yahweh, as Creator and God He is our Father. It
is recorded in Jeremiah 31:9 what Yahweh told Jeremiah. "I am a
Father to Israel, and Ephriam is My firstborn". As Yahshua, he is our
brother as Hebrews 2:10-12 points out. Being both our Father and our
Brother, He is truly our next of kin, the one with both the right and the
ability to redeem. Since He made His laws right in the first place, He honors
them in His own actions.
is only for those that were Yahweh's in the first place, His people
Israel. As Isaiah 63:19 reminds us, "We are thine: Thou never
barest rule over them. They were never called by Thy name".
Accordingly, in Isaiah chapters 43 & 44 Yahweh declares, "But
now saith Yahweh that created thee, O Jacob and He that formed thee O Israel,
fear not for I have redeemed thee, I have called thee by My name, thou
art Mine. I have formed thee, thou art My servant O Israel and thou shalt
not be forgotten of Me. I have blotted out, as a thick cloud, thy transgressions
and as a cloud thy sins; return unto me, for I have redeemed thee".
Yahshua came to redeem us and Luke 1:68 points this out. "Blessed
be Yahweh, God of Israel, for he hath visited and redeemed His
people". The price of redemption was paid at Calvary, but redemption
is not complete, for removing the intruders and restoring the possession to us
is a long process, still going on. In Isaiah 63:4 Yahweh has said,
"For the day of vengeance is in Mine heart and the year of My redeemed is
come". This is the year to which we look forward to with hope, seeing the
signs that it is very near.
What have we lost which we need to have redeemed? All the
rights power and glory that Adam originally had as a son of Yahweh. We are told
that he was made in the image of Yahweh. But are you now in the image of Yahweh?
Is Yahweh imperfect, subject to sickness, old age and death, incapable of doing
good things or resisting evil? You are in that condition, so you have lost the
image of Yahweh and this must be redeemed for you.
Adam was promised dominion over all the earth, yet we
have lost dominion over all but our own homelands. Some of our people in East
Germany, Hungary, Czechoslovakia, the Baltic nations and a part of Finland, have
lost even their home rule. However, the restoration of the image of Yahweh is
promised to us. For example in Hosea 13:14, I Corinthians 15:48-49,
Philippians 3:20-21 and Romans 8:13-39, restoration of our
dominion over all the world is promised to us.
How were these things lost? Our ancestor Adam sold or
traded them to Satan for the knowledge, or experience, of both good and evil.
Yahweh had commanded him to participate only in good, never evil. Hence Paul
says in Romans 7:14, "For we know that the law is spiritual, but I
am carnal, sold under sin".
We are now making desperate efforts to escape that most
horrible and degrading form of slavery, communism. Yet for several thousand
years we have been constantly under a form of slavery, in our fallen condition.
The words used in the original languages to express the basic ideas of redemption
are carefully chosen. Remember, in the Hebrew, the root meanings were to recover
that which had been forfeited, which was to be accomplished by the next of kin,
by purchase or by avenging. In the Greek, from which our New Testament is
translated, three words were used. Agorazo, meaning to buy in the (slave)
market; exagorazo, meaning to buy out of the market, never to be sold again, and
lutroo, meaning to set free by paying a price.
All these words and meanings apply. Through Adam, we had
sold or forfeited our dominion and our image of Yahweh and we had passed into
slavery to the world of Satan. Being exposed in the slave market, we were bought
out of that market and set free by the payment of a terrible price, paid by
Yahshua for us. Our next of kin is recovering for us that which we had
forfeited, both by paying a price and by avenging. The price is already paid,
but Satan has not yielded up the things redeemed. As Paul says in Romans
8:22-23, "For we know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth
in pain together until now, and not only they but ourselves also, which have the
first fruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting
for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body". The usurper must be
thrown out by the terrible might of Yahweh at the return of Yahshua, "For
the day of vengeance is in Mine heart and the year of My redeemed is come".
This includes salvation of course, but it is so much
more. It is redemption, restoration of all our power and glory as the sons of
Yahweh. For this we should earnestly join in that last prayer in the Book of
Revelation, "EVEN SO, COME YAHSHUA."