Two words, with various prefixes and suffixes, are translated redeem:

  • Lutroō: To ransom, rescue, or deliver
  • Agorazō: To buy

Lutroō: To ransom, rescue, or deliver

  • Matthew 20:28, Mark 10:45 The Son of Man did not come to be served but to serve and to give His life a ransom for many.
  • Luke 1:68 Blessed is the Lord God of Israel, for He has visited and redeemed His people.
  • Luke 2:38 …and spoke of Him to all those who looked for the redemption in Jerusalem
  • Luke 21:28 When these things begin to happen, look up and lift up your heads, because your redemption draws near.
  • Luke 24:21 But we were hoping that it was He who would redeem Israel.
  • Acts 7:35 This Moses whom they rejected…is the one God sent to be a ruler and a deliverer…
  • Romans 3:24 …being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus
  • Romans 8:23 …we ourselves groan within ourselves, eagerly waiting for the adoption, the redemption of our body
  • 1 Corinthians 1:30 But of Him you are in Christ Jesus, who became for us wisdom from God – and righteousness and sanctification, and redemption
  • Ephesians 1:7 In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins
  • Ephesians 1:14 …who is the guarantee of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession
  • Ephesians 4:30 Do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption
  • Colossians 1:14 …in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins
  • Titus 2:14 …who gave Himself for us that He might redeem us from every lawless deed and purify for Himself His own special people
  • Hebrews 9:12 …He entered the Most Holy Place once for all, having obtained eternal redemption.
  • Hebrews 9:15 He is the mediator of the new covenant, by means of death, for the redemption of the transgressions under the first covenant, that those who are called may receive the promise of the eternal inheritance
  • Hebrews 11:35 Others were tortured, not accepting deliverance, that they might obtain a better resurrection
  • 1 Peter 1:18 …knowing that you were not redeemed with corruptible things

Summary of lutroō

  • In a literal sense, Moses redeemed Israel from slavery (Acts 7:35) and some prophets refused physical release from torture (Hebrews 9:15).
  • Zacharias said that God “visited and redeemed” (past tense) when John was eight days old, before Jesus was born. Many attribute this to the “prophetic past tense,” which is a figment of various commentators’ imaginations.  Rather, God visited His people, literally, in the birth of the last and greatest prophet, and God redeemed Israel (rescued, not forgave) by bringing a prediction to completion; the people were rescued from a long silence.
  • Jesus’ death was a ransom (Matthew 20:28, Mark 10:45, Romans 3:24, 1 Corinthians 1:30, Ephesians 1:7, Colossians 1:14, Titus 2:14, Hebrews 9:12, 15, 1 Peter 1:18); redeeming from slavery to sin; having become the place where we meet with God (propitiation, mercy seat, Romans 3:25). To the readers, this rescue was in the past (1 Corinthians 1:30), and in the present (Ephesians 1:7).
  • Redemption was also future (Romans 8:23, Ephesians 1:14, 4:30). Transformation by the Spirit that we see in ourselves is our down payment toward the “resurrection body.”
  • The focus is more on the rescue or release than on the purchase.

Agorazw (agorazō) To buy

  • The root word is agora (agora), the marketplace. Interestingly, another derivative of the same root is agoraios (agoraios), low-life, those who frequent the marketplace.  This sort of pun is also found in Jude 3, “concerning our common salvation,” the word “common” also being translated “unclean.”
  • Galatians 3:13 Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the Law
  • Galatians 4:5 …to redeem those who were under the Law,
  • Ephesians 5:16 Redeeming the time for the days are evil
  • Colossians 4:5 Walk in wisdom toward those who are outside, redeeming the time
  • Revelation 5:9 For You were slain and have redeemed us to God by Your blood
  • Revelation 14:3 – 4 These were redeemed from among men

Summary of agorazō

  • The focus is more on the purchase than on the rescue or release.
  • We purchase time from its downward spiral.
  • Jesus paid our price to justice.
  • The purchase transferred ownership of us to God.