Lesson for the Lord’s Day

Even as the Son of Man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give His life a ransom for many. Matthew 20:28

Severe flooding had hit a remote area of an eastern country. The president was involved in critical state business and was unable to go immediately to the flooded area, but he dispatched his son to go and see what help the government could provide for the flood victims. A few days later, the president was able to make the trip to the flood zone, and arrived to inspect the damage for himself. To his surprise, he found his son dressed in work clothes and filling sandbags with other members of the work crews. When his father asked why he was not involved in the flood relief coordination or some other more dignified work, the son replied, ‘This is where they need help the most, so this is where I need to be.’ How like the Lord Jesus, Who knew where we needed help, and Who came to provide that help.

The greatest need for lost and perishing humanity is a ransom. Held captive in Satan’s dominion, we had no way to free ourselves from the yoke of bondage and the peril of eternal destruction. As 500 pence debtors, we could not afford the ransom. Deluded by the devil’s temptations and lies, we did not even realize we needed to be ransomed, and any efforts on our part to bridge the chasm between ourselves and God were made with deceitful hearts, defiled hands, and disobedient actions. Whether we realized it or not, our greatest need was for a ransom, and the Lord Jesus knew that need and came to give His life as that ransom.

It was not enough for the Lord Jesus to come into this world as a great king or governor. Yes, He could have established a righteous rule and corrected the many evils of our world, but that would never atone for all the evils of the past nor release sinners from their helpless bondage. Many today believe He came as a great teacher to instruct us on how to live better lives. He surely was the greatest teacher the world has known, but teaching could not atone for sins nor cover the vast debt that we had already built up. As a lad of twelve, He knew that He must be about His Father’s business, which business was to give His life a ransom for us. Throughout His ministry, His destination was always the cross of Calvary, where the great debt was to be settled forever and where God would see of the travail of His soul and be satisfied. When the day came, He was a willing sacrifice, and the ransom He paid with His own blood has delivered us.

God’s perfect Servant came to serve us in providing the ransom we needed. How can we respond in any other way but to serve and worship Him? -Jim MacIntosh

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