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Ransom Redemption

Author's Bias: Interpretation: conservative

In the New Testament, Jesus introduces the idea that His redemption involves a ransom (Matt 20:28; Mark 10:45); a price is paid for one’s freedom. This payment required to release a human being from punishment or slavery can find its basis in the Old Testament.

1. Ransom of the Firstborn

During the Exodus, God instructs the nation of Israel to consecrate their firstborn sons and animals when they enter the Promised Land (Ex 13:1-16; Num 18:15-17). These firstborns were obligated to God, because they, having marked their doorposts with the blood of a lamb, were protected from Egypt’s tenth plague.

Thereafter, God placed a special claim on the Hebrews’ first born male son. Presented as God’s property to the temple when one month old, the first born son was redeemed by the father who paid the priest a redemption price (Num 18:15-16). This ransom served as a reminder of deliverance from Egyptian bondage.

Paying the ransom

2. Atonement Money

Taking a census for purposes of taxation or preparation for war is a punishable offense by God. When it occurs, each person counted had to be covered or atoned for with atonement money (Ex 30:11-16; 38:26; Num 3:47; 31:44-54).

Consistent with principles of "ransom of the firstborn" and "atonement money", the crucifixion of Jesus Christ paid the redemption price to God for the forfeited lives of humanity.


For deeper study:

Ransom Redemption… An Objective Aspect of Atonement

Did Jesus Die for "Many" or Did He Die for "All"? The Controversy Of Limited Atonement



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Series: The Doctrine on Salvation
Liberation Redemption

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