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Substitution

Substitution

I Paul, have written it with my own hand, I will repay it. Philemon 1:19


Read John 19:23-30

Onesimus owed some kind of debt to Philemon. In all probability he had discussed this with Paul. In spite of this debt, Philemon would still probably be willing to receive his former servant back again. But the question remained: How would Onesimus be able to repay his debt?

Have you ever been confronted with that question? How many sinful acts have you committed today? How many sinful thoughts and feelings arose in your heart? What do you desire and long for in life? Were you disrespectful while the Bible was being read or during prayer? Man stands guilty before God’s countenance. How will he pay for his guilt?

Paul wrote in his letter to Philemon that he was willing to pay Onesimus’ debt. But Christ did far more; He was willing, from all eternity, to take upon Himself the sin and guilt of His people. This too has been written in God’s Word. We read in the Bible that Christ has paid man’s guilt in full. The Saviour suffered and died; He cried out, It is finished, which meant a full payment had been made. The Lord Jesus did not pay the price for sin with silver and gold, but with the price of His own precious blood because He loved the justice of His heavenly Father. He paid this ransom price also because He loved his Church with an everlasting love. In eternity past God had worked out a plan for salvation. Onesimus was undoubtedly surprised when Paul offered to pay his debt. How much greater is the miracle that Christ was not only willing, but also has paid for the guilt of all His children.


Thought: We are only truly blessed when we believe that Christ has paid our debt.


Psalter 230:1,3 (based on Psalm 85) Lord, Thou hast greatly blessed our land, Thou hast brought back our captive band, Thy pardoning grace has made us free And covered our iniquity. O will Thy anger never cease, Forever shall Thy wrath increase? Revive and quicken us once more, And Thy salvation’s joy restore.

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