[CF Devotionals] 2014-03-30 - Christ as Kinsman-Redeemer

Ruth ~ Part 30

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There are some other interesting aspects to the responsibilities of a kinsman. For example:

“When one of the family has been murdered it is important that the family honour be upheld, and the nearest relation is bound to avenge the deceased.” 1

We saw the implications of blood vengeance, when we discussed the establishment of the cities of refuge, back in our examination of Joshua. Anyway, this pretty much covers the Old Testament aspects of this Law. Now, let’s move on to the implications related to the work of Christ on the cross.

Christ our Kinsman-Redeemer: The following is adapted from Dr. McGee’s In A Barley Field. The primary focus of the account in Ruth is to create the background for the line of David and of Christ. But the story of redemption is the story of scripture as a whole, and this is the only illustration of the practical working out of this role of redeemer.

“In him, we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace” (Ephesians 1:7).

It is important, in order to get a clear understanding of redemption, that we relate and restrict it to the Hebrew, goel, found here in Ruth.

“When so restricted, it is as Wilkes declares “There is no theme so solemn and yet so blessed as that of redemption.” Redemption means “to purchase by paying a price.” In the case of the sinner, the price is the blood of Christ. Redemption has been defined as: “The act of Deity in which Jesus Christ pays the whole demand of the law against the sinner, redeeming him from the curse and bondage of the law: The Father receives him as son and heir, and the Holy Spirit delivers him from the bondage to indwelling sin.”

Redemption is postulated on the fact of sin. If sin does not exist, then redemption is a useless work and a meaningless word. The entire plan of redemption rests upon the reality of sin. Therefore the reality of sin must be established as actually existing in the life of the race. It must be demonstrated that sin is something over which man has no power. The redeemer is made necessary because man is helpless in the presence of sin.” 2

It is because of these truths, that we cannot present the gospel without dealing with the reality of sin. The gospel is good news. And what is that news? — there is redemption from sin. The ideal of “finding salvation,” separate from the recognition of one’s sinfulness, eliminates the necessary element of redemption. Dr. McGee summarizes the issue of redemption this way:

“It is not until we come to the New Testament that we find the doctrine of redemption fully developed. Here it is restricted to the deliverance purchased by the Redeemer on behalf of the sinner in the payment of the penalty of sin. The blood of Christ was the medium of exchange used to make this tremendous transaction. Redemption in the New Testament is a progressive work based upon the redemptive act of the shedding of Christ’s blood. The blood is the basis for the redemptive work of God. Redemption is, first of all, a deliverance from the penalty of sin. this was accomplished by Christ shedding his blood on the cross. In the next place, redemption is a deliverance form the power of sin. This is accomplished by the indwelling Holy Spirit. Finally, redemption is a deliverance from the presence of sin. This will be accomplished by the parousia of Christ. Paul made this threefold division of the redemption made by Christ:” 3
“He has delivered us from such a deadly peril, and he will deliver us. On him we have set our hope that he will continue to deliver us” (2 Corinthians 1:10).

  1. Cundall, Arthur E. and Leon Morris, Judges and Ruth, Inter-Varsity Press, Downers Grove, IL, 1968, p .283.
  2. McGee, J. Vernon, In a Barley Field, Regal Books, Glendale, CA, 1968, pp. 167-168.
  3. Ibid., pp. 175-176

To be continued.

[email geoff] GKragen@aol.com
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CFD | March 2014 | Geoff's Devotions | Geoff's Studies | Devotional Topics