When I was fourteen years old, I walked into the local trading stamp redemption center with great purpose and confidence. I was carrying twenty-eight completely filled books of trading stamps, the exact number required to purchase what I wanted—a brand-new fishing rod and reel. I proudly walked up to the clerk and said, “Here are twenty-eight books of trading stamps. You can check every page if you’d like.” I had licked each stamp myself, and I knew that this was the required payment.
Buying the fishing rod and reel with cash was not an option, because I didn’t have enough saved, but I wanted to acquire the new pole honestly and justly. I needed a good plan. I decided to invest my time saving trading stamps and filling up the books so that I would be able to purchase what I wanted with them.
Before I walked into that redemption center, the fishing pole belonged to the trading stamp company. I paid the required price for it, and I joyfully watched as the clerk retrieved it from the shelf and handed it to me. Because the required price had been paid in full, that new rod and reel now belonged to me. I bought it from the trading stamp company. My plan of redemption had worked.
God also had a plan of redemption, but His was for something much greater than a fishing rod and reel. His plan was to purchase mankind back from Satan’s power and authority, for at one time mankind legally belonged to Satan. The required price was high, for the payment was the life of His only begotten Son, Jesus Christ. Once the price was paid, though, it became available for all of mankind who believed to legally belong to God. Jesus Christ, man’s redeemer, fulfilled God’s plan of redemption for all of mankind.
Let’s first look at how mankind came to be under Satan’s rulership. Our loving heavenly Father originally gave man dominion over the earth. We can see this in the first chapter of Genesis.
…let them [man] have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth….
Not only had God given man the dominion over the earth, He also equipped man to be able to successfully carry out this responsibility. God’s man was complete in every way. He had a body that God formed from the dust of the ground. Man also had breath life, making him a living soul. To complete the package, God created spirit in man, giving him the means by which he could communicate with God, Who is Spirit.
Even every one that is called by my name: for I have created him for my glory, I have formed him; yea, I have made him.
God formed, made, and created His man to be a three-part being of body, soul, and spirit.
Adam and Eve enjoyed wonderful fellowship with God, and they were given dominion and authority over the earth. But something changed all that.
Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden?
The adversary’s subtle craftiness tricked Eve into not following God’s Word. She eventually enticed Adam to sin. Because of Adam’s disobedience to God’s Word, Adam forfeited his authority and dominion. He could have refused Eve’s offer; however, through freedom of choice, he took his conferred rights—the rulership, dominion, and authority over this world—and transferred them to God’s archenemy.
In Luke 4, the Devil offered this power to Jesus.
Luke 4:5 and 6:
And the devil, taking him [Jesus] up into an high mountain, shewed unto him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time.
And the devil said unto him, All this power will I give thee, and the glory of them: for that is delivered unto me; and to whomsoever I will I give it.
The Devil rightfully declared, “All this power will I give thee, and the glory of them: for that is delivered unto me…,” because that power and glory had been handed to him in man’s fall due to Adam’s disobedience to God. Adam lost authority, dominion, and rulership. Both he and Eve lost the spirit that God had created in them, becoming just body-and-soul individuals. They lost their connection with God.
After dominion over the earth was transferred to the adversary, mankind legally belonged to Satan. We needed to be redeemed from this captivity.
According to Ephesians 2, all mankind is born into this world dead in trespasses and sins, having no hope, and without God (verses 1 and 12). Our loving heavenly Father knew that we would be in this terrible situation. He provided a brilliant plan by which mankind could be redeemed from Satan’s rulership. Jesus Christ was God’s plan for redemption.…
This is an excerpt from the January/February 2007 issue of The Way Magazine.
Copyright© 2007 by The Way International. All rights reserved.
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