If you were following the NCAA tournament you could not have missed the redemption tour message from the Carolina Tarheel Basketball Team. After the final game with the Redemption tour was complete, I started thinking about what the word redemption means. What did it really mean to those twelve young men playing basketball. Redemption is defined in two ways the action of regaining or gaining possession of something or clearing a debt and the action of saving or being saved from sin, error, or evil. Both apply to this years National Champions, but how does it apply to our lives?
During the Lent season, many Christians have turned their hearts toward Jesus and his sacrifice and humiliation to provide “the way” to our Father and everlasting life. Hebrews 9:12 defines Christ’s redemption of us, ” he entered once and for all into the holy places, not by means of the blood of goats and calves but by means of his own blood, thus securing an eternal redemption.” As I focus on discipline and sacrifice during Lent, I compare my life to the redemption tour. I reflect on the ups and downs of my life -both the joy and sin. I see my failures and the hurt this causes those I love and most importantly Christ, yet in the end I know my debt is paid and I have been saved by Christ and one day I will live with him in heaven.
One part of the redemption definition focuses on being saved from sin. This Easter season we remember the sacrifice that God made by providing his only son, Jesus, as a living sacrifice in order that our sin might be washed clean. 1 John 4:19, “In this the love of God was made manifest among us, that God sent his only Son into the world, so that we might live through him.” With Christ partitioning for me before the throne, my sins are not forgotten but heaped upon Christ in order that I might be presented as a bride in her white gown. Much like the team that has made numerous mistakes and their coach graciously and humbly accepted as his fault in order to put forth a complete team the next time they hit the court. This sacrifice brought them to glory and a National Championship. I long for my championship and my home in heaven with Christ.
The redemption definition also includes regaining or gaining possession of something or clearing a debt. Christ as clearly paid our debt with his blood, his redemption for us. We are reminded in Ephesians 2:13, “But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ.” By paying this debt he has allowed me to gain possession of a heavenly home with him one day, my championship. As the Tarheels watched the clock tick down to zero, they could feel their redemption for all that had been lost in the last championship game, but this loss had now been regained. Just as we were once lost we now are found in Christ, our shepherd, so that we might gain his glory through his redemption for us. This gift is defined in Romans 3:24, “and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus,”.
Closing Verse: “In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace,” Ephesians 1:7
Challenge: Have you stopped to discipline yourself and reflect on the sacrifice of Christ this Lent season. As Holy Week comes to an end turn your focus to Christ’s gift of salvation through the cross.
Please share if so lead.