“Knowing that you were not redeemed with corruptible things, like silver or gold, from your aimless conduct received by tradition from your fathers, but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot.”1 Peter 1:18-19
At the time the Apostle Peter wrote these words, slavery was a reality all over the Roman Empire. Men and women were bought and sold. Although slavery is a terrible thing, there is an even more terrible form of slavery, namely the bondage of sin. Natural man “is caught in the cords of his sin” (Proverbs 5:22). He has enslaved himself under the dominion of sin. In Romans 7:14, Paul writes: “I am carnal, sold under sin,” and in John 8:34, Jesus says: “Whoever commits sin is slave of sin.”
During the Middle Ages, there was a famous blacksmith who was arrested and put into prison. Being a strong man, he figured he would be able to break the chains that he was bound with. However, when he examined the chains, he realized that it would be impossible because he, himself, had welded them. He used to brag that nobody would ever be able to break the chains he had made. And now he was in prison, bound by his own chains. That is the case with every person still shackled by sin.
The only possibility to be freed from the slavery of sin is to have a change of master, but that involves a high cost. Yes, this cost was paid by Jesus Christ, the sinless Son of God, who took our place to die on the cross of Calvary. Jesus came to break the chains of sins that keep the soul in bondage.
A new master demands new service
A slave of sin can become a servant of the Lord Jesus Christ. God can deliver him or her “from the power of darkness” and convey them “into the kingdom of the Son of His love” (Colossians 1:13). Through the precious blood of Jesus, we can become free.
In the days of slavery, a British slave handler got to know a certain slave well, felt sorry for him, and decided to set him free by buying him. The slave did not know the intent of the slave handler, and when he was bought, he retorted: “You claim to be a free citizen of Britain who detests slavery, and yet you buy me! Don’t I have the same right to be free as you?” His new master replied: “I bought you to set you free.” With tears in his eyes, the slave fell to the feet of his purchaser and said: “You have won my heart. I want to be your slave forever!”
Jesus Christ has bought us in order to free us. All who have been freed by Him and realize what a high price He paid for us will give Him their whole heart and desire to His servant forever. When slaves were freed in the United States years ago, there were some slaves who did not want to become free. Today, most people who are slaves of sin want to stay enslaved, unfortunately, even though Jesus Christ has paid the price for all and lets freedom be proclaimed everywhere.
What did it cost?
The price was not paid with silver and gold or by other precious material means but by the precious blood of Jesus Christ. The term “the precious blood of Christ” has such a deep meaning that the world cannot comprehend it. Only those who have experienced the power of the blood can begin to fathom its worth.
Jesus gave His life for us. He was the sacrifice for our sins. He was the lamb without blemish. He is “the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world” (John 1:29). Christ did this out of love. It cost Him everything. By shedding His blood for our salvation, He showed the world what the love of God means. In response, He now asks us to live our life for Him and give our all for His service.