I have been a Jesus follower for a good few years and I have heard quite a bit of Christian talk. Have you ever heard someone say that ‘GOD loves you so much, even if you were the only person on the planet, He still would have died for you’? It is of course true, but it fails to point out that even if you were the only person on the planet, your sin would be so great that GOD would need to die for you to live. It is a little bit more sobering when put like that.
In order for you to live, a ransom had to be paid. A ransom is a large amount of money that is demanded in exchange for someone who has been taken prisoner. Humankind was taken prisoner by sin and death in the garden of Eden.
Each one must pay the Lord a ransom for their life. Exodus 30:12
15 The rich are not to give more than a half shekel and the poor are not to give less when you make the offering to the Lord to atone for your lives. Exodus 30:15
The rich were not to pay more and the poor not to pay less. Each life had equal value, equal debt and equal ransom to pay. They would weigh out the ransom … metal coins which weighed only 5.8 grams. That isn’t much is it? It doesn’t feel like it is of great worth. Is your life worth that or more than that? I wonder if it is equivalent to a Roman nail…
45 For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.’ Mark 10:45
5 For there is one God and one mediator between God and mankind, the man Christ Jesus, 6 who gave himself as a ransom for all people. This has now been witnessed to at the proper time. 1 Timothy 2:5-6
Our lives were ransomed by three Roman nails and the man that died whilst hanging from them. The three nails, also made of metal and would have weighed a few grams. The nails held Jesus to the cross so that my ransom and yours could be paid to a just GOD. Jesus’ death was the price of the ransom that was demanded for humanity to be free from the prison of death. The coins and nails may have weighed a small amount but the cost was very great.
7 No one can redeem the life of another
or give to God a ransom for them –
8 the ransom for a life is costly,
no payment is ever enough – Psalm 49:7-8
23 You were bought at a price … 1 Corinthians 7:23
The offering in Exodus was to atone for their lives. It was to make them ‘at one’ with GOD. Jesus’ offering was a once and for all offering that has atoned for our lives for ever.
9 And they sang a new song, saying:
‘You are worthy to take the scroll
and to open its seals,
because you were slain,
and with your blood you purchased for God
persons from every tribe and language and people and nation.
10 You have made them to be a kingdom and priests to serve our God,
and they will reign on the earth.’ Revelation 5:9-10
When our sin was weighed up it required the richness of Christ to pay the ransom in full. When His love was weighed out it may have only been a few grams of metal but it is the weighty offering of His life in exchange for yours. If you and I even begin to understand this we will grasp how greatly we are loved. Loved so much that if you were the only person on the planet Jesus would still have died to save you. His value on your freedom cost Him everything.