Friday, May 13, 2016


“Redemption” is one of those words that we often use in a theological sense but, interestingly enough, isn’t rooted in theology but in real life slavery. Redemption is literally buying a person out of slavery and then setting them free. It is a life-changing event that changes a person’s reality forever. Take, for example, a twelve-year-old girl named Anesha.
Anesha, who lives in an impoverished area of a developing nation, knows what it is like to be redeemed and have her whole life changed. For when she was a toddler her parents took out a loan to buy some land and seed in order to try and make a living as farmers. Unfortunately, severe drought struck the area and they lost their crops two years in a row, rendering them unable to pay back their debt. The man they had borrowed from was unscrupulous as well as merciless; he compounded the outrageous interest that had been agreed upon and soon the family was way over their heads in debt and was unable to pay off the loan.
With no other options, Anesha’s parents gave up on their dreams of prosperity and moved into the run-down servant’s quarters owned by the loan shark and went to work to try and pay off their debt by working in his fields, cleaning his house, cooking his food, and generally doing everything he demanded seven days a week with very little time off. Anesha and her siblings grew up working for the loan shark as well, for no matter how many hours the family worked, it was never enough to pay for the interest on the loan, let alone the principal.
Anesha knew no other life; she was born into bondage and had worked every day of her life for as long as she could remember. She couldn’t read nor write and knew very little of the outside world. All she knew was that she had to do what the master wanted or she would be whipped, beaten, or punished in some other cruel way. She often thought of running away, but she didn’t know where to run or how to support herself and the thought of what the master would do to her parents, brothers, and sisters kept her in bondage as surely as any steel chains would have.
And then one day the master came and told her that she was now old enough to go and work for someone else and that by being sold she would bring in money to help her parents pay off their debt. So, with little choice in the matter, Anesha soon found herself standing on a table in a crowded back room with many men looking her over. Anesha wondered what they wanted from her and began to cry as she realized how desperate her situation was.
Many of the men leered at her and made suggestive comments while others asked about her strength and work skills. One, though, was different. He looked upon her with eyes full of love and compassion. Anesha felt a peace that seemed to emanate from him that she had never felt before.
The bidding started in earnest, with many making bids, but the man of peace would not be outdone. He eventually won the bidding war, and when Anesha walked over to him, wondering what he would have her do, he bent down and looked her in the eyes and said, "Anesha, you are free. You don’t have to serve me or work for me."
            Tears of joy began to roll down her eyes as Anesha took in what was happening to her. Not only would she no longer have to work in the fields or clean the master’s house, she was set free forever and would never have to worry about being abused or mistreated again.  She went from being a slave to a taskmaster to being free to go where she wanted and work for whomever she pleased. The choices were many, and as she thought about her future, it came to her that what she wanted more than anything was to simply be with the one who had paid the price and set her free.
So Anesha dropped to her knees, and with a tremble in her voice she said, “Sir, could I come and stay with you? I will serve you and try to earn my keep. I just want to be with you and be thankful and try to pay back all that you have done for me.”
The man of peace looked at her with a huge smile and a twinkle in his eye and said, “Daughter – for that is what you will be to me from now on – you can stay with me for as long as you like for there is plenty of room in my house. But you will be neither servant nor slave but will instead be my friend and daughter.”
Anesha went with him and never regretted it. Her new life was so much better than her past one that she couldn’t even put it into words. She served with joy and told everyone she met about what had happened and how her life had changed. And when the man of peace heard about her family and the bondage they lived under, he redeemed them as well.
Today Anesha knows well what it is to be redeemed – to be bought out of slavery, to have an unpayable debt paid off for you, to be set free from a cruel taskmaster. And, if she were here with us today, she would tell you that what she lived through is an example of what each of us goes through in this life. We are born into slavery, with a debt that we cannot pay, and Jesus pays it off for us and sets us free to serve Him willingly with joy and thanksgiving in our hearts.
And even though He has every right to demand our loyalty, after all He died on the cross for our sins and He paid the price that sets us free, Jesus doesn’t force us to serve Him or spend time with Him. Instead, He gives us the choice to serve Him willingly or go back to those things that enslaved us – things like unforgiveness, jealousy, bitterness, hatred, lust, greed, covetousness, arrogance, addictions, and all the other unhealthy behaviors and attitudes that bring sorrow and destruction into our lives.
If you have never been redeemed, if you have never placed your faith in Jesus and asked him to redeem you and set you free from all that selfish garbage that pulls you down, ask Him to be your Savior and to set you free from all those destructive attitudes and behaviors that war against your soul. He will do it – He will set you free and give you a new life in Him that is far removed from your past.
And if you are among those who have been redeemed but have somehow gotten off track and gone back to the taskmaster of selfish sin, destructive addictions, and toxic attitudes, it’s not too late. Turn back to Jesus once again – He paid the price once and for all so don’t stay enslaved to sin but confess it to Him, find forgiveness, and live an abundant life of joy, peace, love and hope in Him.

Let’s Pray Together: Lord Jesus, thank you for redeeming me, for paying the price and setting me free from sin by dying on the cross. Thank you that I am no longer a slave to sin but am free to serve you. Deliver me from these sins and destructive tendencies that I bring before you now… (Continue praying as you feel led…)

Note: While Anesha’s story is fictional, it is a reality lived by many trapped in poverty or even modern-day slavery. To help someone like Anesha escape poverty, sponsor a child at To find out more about modern day slavery, do a Google search to find organizations that are involved in stopping human trafficking.

This devotional is authored and published by Randy Brockett. All publishing rights are reserved but readers are encouraged to repost (please include this copyright info) or share his insights with their family, friends, and congregations. For other devotionals by Randy, see,, and 

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