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More precious than gold

For you know that you were redeemed from your empty way of life inherited from your ancestors, not with perishable things like silver or gold, but with the precious blood of Christ, like that of an unblemished and spotless lamb. 1 Peter 1:18-19 CSB

Peter continues with the call of motivation for holy living for believers in these two verses. If God’s character of holiness will not motivate you, if God’s judgment will not motivate you to holiness, then Peter appeals by calling to remembrance the blood of Jesus Christ and His sacrifice to compel us to live holy lives. Peter says that we were “redeemed from [our] empty way of life.” The word “redeemed” means “to be freed by paying a price or ransom.” For the Jewish believers, this word would bring to mind how God freed them from Egypt. For the Gentile believers, this word would bring the picture of slaves being set free through purchase, a common practice during that time. In both cases, to put that into perspective, Jesus Christ redeemed us all from bondage, being set free from the hold of sin and the empty way of life it brings. It is important to take note that the “perishable things” that are “empty” that Peter uses as examples are silver and gold, highly valuable metals that are long lasting, and yet, they are “empty” and “perishable” in light of the beauty and eternity in heaven. In comparison to these precious metals, the only true precious item is the “precious blood of Christ.” Christ’s blood is what made it possible for us to be redeemed. The worth of precious metals of this earth will not be enough to pay to redeem sinners from the penalty of sin. Hebrews 9:22 says, “According to the law almost everything is purified with blood, and without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness.” During those times, a spotless lamb was required to be sacrificed for the forgiveness of sins. It was established by the Lord to be a picture of Jesus Christ to come, to be the ultimate perfect sacrifice. And as Hebrews 4:15 says, “For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who has been tempted in every way as we are, yet without sin,” Christ went through the trials, the tribulations, the pains, and yet, He did not sin. We are called to pursue holiness, for it is in our Father’s character, for we are serving an impartial Judge and are actions have consequences, and for we were redeemed by the blood of the Lamb. In comparison to the salvation that we have received, to pursue the treasures of this world is an “empty way of life,” while Jesus said in John 10:10b, “I have come so that they may have life and have it in abundance.” We readily acknowledge that Jesus Christ has saved us from the destruction and power of sin. But more than that and of more significance is the knowledge that the Lord Jesus Christ shed His blood at the cross to pay the price so we can be freed from sin.


Isaac De Guzman

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