By Howard See
In Psalms 107, the Psalmist extolled God’s mercies and exhorted the redeemed of the Lord. In the first two verses the Psalmist said, “O give thanks unto the Lord, for he is good: for his mercy endureth forever. Let the redeemed of the Lord say so, whom he hath redeemed from the hand of the enemy.” It is evident that the Psalmist considered the mercy of God in delivering Israel from the hand of the enemy, of such magnitude that those who had been thus redeemed should declare their redemption by God’s hand that all might know God’s power, love, and mercy. Their redemption was something about which one could rejoice, praise God, and tell others.
When one considers that their redemption was a physical redemption from the hand of another nation, by contrast the magnitude of our spiritual redemption in Christ Jesus becomes apparent. Paul stated that Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law that the blessing of Abraham might come upon us (Cal. 3:13-14). He further taught that those who lived under the law were redeemed by Christ that they might receive the adoption of sons and thereby become heirs of Clod (Gal. 4:4-7; Cf. Heb. 9:15; 11:39-40; Rom. 8:16-17). Not only have we been redeemed from the law, but our redemption is from sin (Eph. 1:7), from all iniquity (Tit. 2:14), and from the vain conversation received by tradition from our fathers (1 Pet. 1:18-19). If the physical deliverance of Israel was considered sufficient cause for them to declare their redemption, how much more should the greatness of our redemption cause us to shout about that redemption from the house tops (cf. Mt. 10:27; Lk. 12:3). If the people of God today could be made to realize the greatness of God’s love, mercy, and goodness toward them in Christ, their mouths could not be muzzled to keep them from declaring to others what God has done for them. Indeed God so designed the kingdom as to be dependent upon the redeemed of the Lord “saying so.”
The religion of Jesus Christ is a taught religion. The author of the Hebrew letter, quoting Jeremiah, said, “. . .I will put my laws into their mind, and write them in their hearts; and I will be to them a God, and they shall be to me a people: And they shall not teach every man his neighbor, and every man his brother, saying, know the Lord: for all shall know me, from the least to the greatest” (Heb. 8:10-11). One of the great contrasts between the law of Moses and the law of Christ involves the fact that children were born into God’s family, the Jewish nation, under the law of Moses by a fleshly or physical birth. They then had to be taught to know the Lord. Under the law of Christ, however, man is first taught to know the Lord. Faith produced in the hearts of men through the preaching of the Word (Rom. 10:17) leads them to come to the Lord in obedience to his will. They thus become children of God by a new birth (John 3:3-5). For this reason Jesus affirms that those who are taught of the Father are the ones who come unto him (John 6:44-45). John affirms that those in whose hearts faith has been produced by the gospel are the ones given power to become the sobs of God (John 1:11-12). The apostle Paul stated it well in Rom. 10:13-14 when he said, “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved. How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher?” In this context the Apostle demonstrated that “calling on the name of the Lord” for salvation involves hearing the gospel preached, believing the facts of the gospel and obeying the commands of the gospel (cf. vs. 16).
God has placed the responsibility for preaching or teaching the gospel of His Son upon those who are the redeemed. Jesus said to his disciples, “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you” (Mt. 28:19-20). Paul said that “. . .it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe” (1 Cor. 1:21). This responsibility of preaching or teaching God’s truth so that man might be saved has not been placed in the hands of a selected clergy. The New Testament knows of no clergy-laity distinction. Every Christian is to grow in grace and knowledge of the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ (2 Pet. 3:18). Every Christian is to sanctify the Lord God in their hearts and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asks them a reason of the hope that is in them (1 Pet. 3:15). Paul reproved Christians who by reason of time should have been teachers, but who had not grown in knowledge. Rather than being able to teach others as God intended, they still needed someone to teach them the elementary principles of the gospel (Heb. 5:12). When the Christians were dispersed from Jerusalem because of persecution “they. . .went everywhere preaching the word” (Acts 8:4). Paul instructed Timothy saying, “The things that thou hast heard of me among many witnesses, the same commit thou to faithful men, who shall be able to teach others also” (2 Tim. 2:2). Truly the Redeemed of the Lord are to “say so!”
The Psalmist indicates that those redeemed of the Lord should declare their redemption because of their appreciation for God’s power, love, and mercy extended to them in deliverance. Our appreciation for what God has done for us should certainly be sufficient to cause us to want to share our joys and blessings in Christ with others (Eph. 1:3). Just as the goodness of God leads to repentance (Rom. 2:4), the goodness of God should cause the redeemed of the Lord to “say so.”
The love that we have in our hearts for other people should cause each Christian to declare the message of God’s redemption. God has always required that man love other men (Mt. 22:37-39). Proper love for others will cause us to want them to be saved. But their salvation is dependent upon their hearing, believing and obeying the gospel (Rom. 1:13-17). When the redeemed of the Lord fail to “say so,” those whom they could have taught may never hear the gospel. Hence, faith cannot be produced that they might be led to obedience. The redeemed of the Lord will be held accountable in the judgment for their failure to declare their redemption (cf. Ezek. 3:1821). Jesus said, “Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them” (Mt. 7:12). Necessarily implied in the Lord’s statement is the fact that if we are thankful that someone took the time and put forth the effort to declare God’s message of redemption to. us, then we likewise ought to declare the message of redemption to others.
There are many reasons some of the Lord’s redeemed ones do not “say so.” Some are lacking in love for the Lord. Jesus said, “He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me” (John 14:21). In verse 24 Jesus said, “He that loveth me not keepth not my sayings.” Inasmuch as the Lord has placed the responsibility of declaring the message of redemption upon the redeemed, a failure to “say so” indicates a lack of love for the Lord. Others, lacking proper love for their neighbors, fail to declare their redemption. Still others are ashamed of the Gospel. They will talk to others about everything but their redemption (cf. Rom. 1:16). Many put other things first and simply make no arrangements for time or opportunity to teach God’s plan of redemption to others. Many others are worldly minded (cf. 1 John 2:15). They are not truly interested in spiritual things and consequently are not really concerned about those who have not yet been redeemed. Truly the redeemed of the Lord must lay aside every hindrance, and be busy declaring God’s
message of redemption (Heb. 12:1-2; 2 Cor. 7:1; Gal. 5:7).
All of the ways by which to declare the message of redemption are ineffectual unless the redeemed conduct themselves in such a way that Christ can be seen living in them (cf. Gal. 2:20). Jesus said, “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven” (Mt. 5:16). One of the greatest hindrances to human redemption is a failure of many who have been redeemed to be an example of righteousness. Peter emphasized the influence of a righteous life on others in discussing the husband-wife relationship (1 Pet. 3:1-6). This is one way in which all of God’s redeemed ones not only can “say so” but must “say so” if their redemption is to lead them to heaven. The redeemed of the Lord may also declare their redemption to others through the use of attractive, well written tracts.. Almost every local church makes good tracts available for use. There is power in the printed Word. The distribution of the printed Word is certainly one way that all can declare their redemption.
Peter declared that each redeemed person has the responsibility of growing in knowledge through study that they may be able to,,answer the questions asked of them concerning their lope in Christ (1 Pet. 3:15). Faithful Christians are to be able to teach others (Heb. 5:12; 2 Tim. 2:2). Each redeemed person should prepare himself in order to be able to sit down in the home of non-Christians and declare unto them the message of redemption. Those who have the ability should prepare themselves to declare God’s redemption through the teaching of Bible classes or in public preaching. Remember that God gives us responsibility on the basis of our ability. God knows what our ability is and holds us accountable for not using the full extent of the ability which he has given us (Mt. 25:14-30). May we each one say with the Psalmist, “Let the redeemed of the Lord say so,” and then do it.
Truth Magazine XIX: 28, pp. 441-442
May 22, 1975