In our Christian faith, we have a clear understanding of what it means to be saved. We know that our Messiah set aside His eternal glory, lived a perfect life and died a martyr's horrible death to demonstrate His great love for us and offer complete reconciliation for our rebelliousness. Then, He rose from the dead in triumph over evil, and power over everything. He took His rightful place as Lord over all creation.
Sure, we get it. We believe it. We accept it. We embrace it. But, at the same time, we easily miss it altogether.
If we are willing to see the Passover Story as a foretelling of our deliverance from sin and death (and we should), then we can draw from this
In Exodus 6:6-7 God declares that fourfold purpose:
- I will bring you out from under the burden of the Egyptians and rid you of their bondage
- I will redeem you with an outstretched arm and with great judgments
- I will bring you into the land concerning which I swear to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob
- And I will take you as My people and I will be your God
It's tragic that we, as Christians, have sold God's salvation so quickly: not taking the time to grasp what it is that the Messiah is offering. It's not about stepping out of the path of God's eternal wrath. It is about being drawn into covenant relationship and assuming an identity completely different than what we were before.
Messiah teaches us that that burdens and cares of this world should not bind us (Matthew 6:24-34). This is the first stated purpose of God's deliverance. But this isn't the reality that most Christians live in. In fact, most of us struggle with the struggles and weight of this world in addition to the burden of Christ (however easy and light that yoke of service may be).
Closely tied to this is the promise of redemption: that we are not simply slaves to this world who have put off the yoke of our slavery in rebellion; but we have been totally redeemed and purchased in righteousness by the King of eternity. Redemption is different than emancipation. We are not granted liberty as slaves cast out into the wilderness on our own: else we would die in the wilderness by starvation, poison, or the sword. It is only because we are redeemed, purchased outright, that we are empowered to stand against the forces bent on our destruction.
We were not set free from bondage to wander aimlessly. Nor were we drawn out to set up camp where ever we found rest. We have been empowered with a mission, not to seek any country we may choose for ourselves; but to aim toward the Promise of Covenant that He swore to our fore-fathers. As a gentile, this equally applies to us as much as any of it. If not, then none of it applies. If we do not continue in our relationship with the children of Israel, then we reject the identity, the hope and the protection that we have embraced thus far. We become nothing more than renegade slaves who have escaped the wrath of our master, only to die in the wilderness.
Finally, our deliverance demands that we recognize the final step of our salvation is in His hands. It is not that He offered us salvation and we simply take it up for ourselves. He has paid the price, we reach toward Him, and He completes the work by drawing us to Himself. "I will take you as My people and I will be your God."