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providence, but we speak not fully in harmony with the Word of truth--love is peculiarly
sacred to redemption.
"God commendeth His love toward us in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died
"For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son."
"Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us, and sent His Son to be
the propitiation for our sins."
"The Son of God who loved me and gave Himself for me."
These and similar passages will immediately come to mind. So in Rev. 1:, "He
loveth" is followed by "and loosed us from our sins by His blood." The A.V. reads
"washed" (lousanti), but later Greek texts read "loosed" (lusanti), which reading is
supported by the test of numerics. Adding this occurrence, the word "to loose" occurs
seven times in the Revelation. Once used of sins, twice of seals (5: 2, 5), twice of angels
(9: 14, 15), and of Satan (20: 3, 7).
To realize the meaning of this term we might look at one or two references outside the
book of Revelation, viz.:--
"For this purpose the Son of God was manifested that He might destroy the works of
the devil" (I John 3: 8).
"The elements shall melt . . . . . All these things shall be dissolved . . . . . the heavens
being on fire shall be dissolved" (II Pet. 3: 10-12).
"Having broken down the middle wall" (Eph. 2: 14).
We must be ready to find the word used in its secondary as well as its primary
meaning, and not imagine that it is necessarily a truth that we must always translate one
Greek word by one English word. John 1: 27 and 2: 19 show how one writer uses the
word, first in its primary meaning "loose," secondly in its more figurative meaning
"destroy," and a rigid concordant or etymological system would be insufficient. To
loose, to melt, to dissolve, to destroy, these are the words that are used to convey
something of its meaning. What fulness there is in those triumphant words of praise,
"Unto Him Who loveth us and LOOSED us from our sins." Vitally linked with this
expression is the word translated ransom, "to give His soul a ransom (lutron, the loosing
price) for many" (Matt. 20: 28), or redemption in Heb. 9: 12. What a prospect is in store
for the redeemed! Sin's claims dissolved, melted, gone.
"Dead to sin" is a somewhat parallel though fuller expression. We say fuller for two
reasons. "Dead to" involves something more than "loosed out of," and "sin" is deeper
than sins. We shall find a better opportunity for a thorough investigation of this
difference under the series Things that Differ. It may be as well, however, to point out
that the word hamartia as used by Matthew (the Gospel of the kingdom) always has the
plural, or the present manifestation in view, never SIN is reckoned with in other ways.
Here in Rev. 1: the redeemed give thanks for being loosed from sins, and that "by His
blood." From the first recorded offering in Genesis to the last mention of redemption in
Revelation, throughout all dispensations (Patriarchal, Mosaic, Mystery), the blood of
Christ is prominently placed with respect to forgiveness and redemption. When theology