Dear Child of God, I greet you in the precious name of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.
This Sunday, we will reflect on a hugely important subject within the Christian movement: DELIVERANCE. This is a theme that also runs through the entire length of the Holy Bible. But one might ask, what is deliverance, in the context of the Christian faith? Deliverance literally means recovery or preservation from loss or danger. Related words include: rescue, salvation, reclaim, and redemption.
In Genesis 3, we come face to face with the underlying cause to all human predicament – which is the rebellion of Adam and Eve against their creator. It is, however, very clear from this very text, that even after humanity fell from God’s presence, God promised, and also acted in way that demonstrated an ultimate plan of redemption for humanity. For instance, in Genesis 3:20, the LORD God, made garments for His fallen children and clothed them, which pointed to restoration in the future. To the serpent He also said, “…he will crush your head, and you will strike his heel” (Gen. 3:15).
When the Jewish people eventually find themselves under the oppressive rule of Pharaoh, in Egypt, God promises to rescue them. In Exodus 3:7,8, God says, “I have indeed seen the misery of my people in Egypt …So I have come down to rescue them from the hand of the Egyptian…” In Psalm 50:7-15, God addresses His people on the meaning of sacrifices. The people performed their sacrifices, but they apparently misunderstood the purpose. Their misunderstanding was grounded in false assumptions about the nature of God and what He required. Sacrifices were not intended to supply God with something He lacked. We need to be reminded that God’s perfect moral nature demands that the penalty for sin be death; however, a person could offer an animal to God as a substitute for himself, symbolizing the
person’s faith in the merciful, forgiving God.
Many religions of the world teach the same concept: deities require sacrifices in order to be satisfied. Whether it’s vowing to avoid certain foods, killing an animal, or performing certain deeds, the devout work must meet certain standards. But in Christianity, we admit that our sacrifices and obedience are not good enough for our great and holy God – only through the faithful Son, Jesus Christ, can we be saved
or delivered from our sins. Rejoice, therefore, in the perfect sacrifice Jesus, setting us free from the treadmill of ceremonial law keeping and into a life relying on Christ’s once-for-all sacrifice to make us right with God! Have you been to Jesus, to receive your gift of salvation? Have a blessed week!
The Very Rev. Michael Mukhwana