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Seeds of the Kingdom

The Price Has Been Paid

by Ron Scurfield

I have swept away your offences like a cloud, your sins like the morning mist. Return to me, for I have redeemed you.
Isaiah 44:22, NIV

Buying a house? First we choose the property we want to buy. We can arrange the finances in various ways, depending on whether we have the necessary resources or need to take out a mortgage. Either way the price has to be paid. Then the house is ours and we can move in. It becomes our home.

Buying a car is similar but less complicated. We find an affordable model, agree on an acceptable trade-in for our old vehicle, pay the difference and drive it away. One thing we don’t do is leave it standing on the forecourt.

Shoes are easier. Choose a pair we like. Try them on to make sure they fit, and if they’re comfortable we can leave our old ones behind and walk away.

In each case the price must be paid before they belong to us.

Do we realise that our bodies do not belong to us? We may say, “It’s my life, my body, and I can do what I like with it.” - Not so. ‘You are not your own. You were bought at price’ (1 Corinthians 6:19-20). And the cost was nothing less than the precious blood of Jesus Christ. We have been repossessed from the brink of hell, paid for by the blood that was shed on the cross of Calvary.

‘For the wages of sin is death’ (Romans 6:23). The original sin of Adam separated us from eternal communion with God. The deceiver led us into disobedience which brought its inevitable consequence. This was not God’s punishment, but simply the result of ignoring His warning: ‘in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die’ (Genesis 2:17).

There was no way back - except one. Jesus came to die the death that we brought upon ourselves, so that we could live again in a restored relationship with the Father. ‘He died for us so that … we may live together with Him’ (1 Thessalonians 5:10). He paid the price.

Like buying a house: We now have the deed of ownership, and can move in and make our home with Him. ‘This is how we know that we live in him and he in us: He has given us of his Spirit’ (1 John 4:13).

As for the shoes we bought; we can leave the old behind and walk away in the new. ‘Therefore if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: the old has gone, the new is here!’ (2 Corinthians 5:17), and Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, “This is the way; walk in it”’ (Isaiah 30:21).

And the car? - It’s paid for. It’s ours. We need to take possession and drive it away. But whatever we do, it mustn’t be left standing on the forecourt.

Prayer: Lord, please forgive me for trying to pay for my failures by my own efforts. As I look to You I see Your compassion and love. I see Your pain when I let You down. But I also recognise what it cost You to bring me back. Help me to live in Your grace, so that my life is centred not on my failures and what I can’t do, but on You and what You’ve already done. Thank You, in Jesus’ name. Amen.

Ron Scurfield with his wife Jill, are part of the Associate Ministry Team at Ellel Grange and occasionally Ellel Scotland. Ron enjoys walking and writing and meeting interesting people, but his greatest joy is seeing God transform lives, setting people free to live the abundant life that Jesus intended.


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