Ransom

Jon Brown

READ : Hosea 3

So I bought her for fifteen shekels. (v. 2)

Christian teachers have offered several main theories that attempt to explain how the death of Christ atones for the sins of the world. One of them is called “the Ransom Theory.” It was widespread throughout the early church but was given special expression by Origen of Alexandria. It suggests that because of sin the world was held hostage by Satan, who required a ransom before he would free his enslaved captives. That ransom became Jesus Christ.

Admittedly, the Ransom Theory does not entirely explain the atonement, but when I read Hosea 3:2, I cannot help but think of Jesus and of the deliverance that is ours in him. The Lord ordered Hosea to buy back his wife from her adulterous ways, just as he intended to retrieve the people of God from their slavery to idolatrous ways.

What stands out to me as most significant now is that the atonement happens, not just how it happens; that through the life, death, resurrection, and ascension of Jesus Christ, God has numbered and delivered a people for himself. He has broken the curse of sin and death on our lives and in the world so that we can say with the apostle Paul, “Thanks be to God who has given us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.”

PRAYER

Thanks be to God!