Dear Reader, when you talk to a Jehovah’s Witness, you will notice that if you start to talk about redemption, they get quite defensive about it … and replace it, with the word “ransom”.

“Oh yes” they will say “we believe that Christ is our ransom” and they point to the scriptures that say

“Even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many.” (Matthew 20:28)

“Who gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time.” (1 Timothy 2:6)

Ah yes! One verse from Christ himself, under the kingdom of heaven dispensation, and one verse from Paul preaching the kingdom of God.

So what’s the difference?
A ransom gives temporary security while a redemption gives permanent and eternal security.

JW’s wrongly believe you can lose your salvation, so they go for the weaker word of “ransom”. Yes, it is the price that was paid by Jesus Christ for a start, but then Christ’s ransom is also the redemption.

Mathematically speaking, a ‘redemption’ is a subset of ‘ransom’ but not the other way around, that is, all redemptions are ransoms but not all ransoms are redemptions.

Ransom = temporary salvation … you can lose it.
Redemption = permanent salvation … you can’t lose it.

Even in the Old testament the distinction is made between the two words as follows:

“None of them can by any means redeem (permanent) his brother, nor give to God a ransom (temporary) for him:” (Psalm 49:7)

“I will ransom (temporary) them from the power of the grave; I will redeem (permanent) them from death: O death, I will be thy plagues; O grave, I will be thy destruction: repentance shall be hid from mine eyes.” (Hosea 13:14)

If you pay a ransom for a person he can revert back to his previous owner by being bought back again.

If that person is redeemed, there is no going back to his previous owner as the tie has been permanently and irrevocably cut.

Harley Hitchcock


 Jehovah's Witnesses 

- are they?


Australian Bible Ministries, PO Box 5058 Mt. Gravatt East 4122 Qld, Australia