Reconciliation

Paul explains the power and purpose of the Gospel.

2 Corinthians 5:18-21

18 Now all these things are from God, who reconciled us to Himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation, 19 namely, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and He has committed to us the word of reconciliation. 20 Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were making an appeal through us; we beg you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God. 21 He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.

It is important for us to understand what Paul is communicating here because it applies to us.  He is qualifying everything he previously said by making sure they understand it isn’t something that he came up with, rather it is what God says.  Furthermore, we see that as a result of Paul’s reconciliation to God through Christ, his job is to point others in the direction of reconciliation as well.  Does this sound familiar? In Matthew 28 we read, “16 But the eleven disciples proceeded to Galilee, to the mountain which Jesus had designated. 17 When they saw Him, they worshiped Him; but some were doubtful. 18 And Jesus came up and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. 19 Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”

The great commission is not just something we are told to do, it is something we get to do and only something we are able to do as a result of our reconciliation with God through Christ.  I just heard my pastor preaching about this yesterday and he likened it to when we see a really good movie or find a really great store.  We tell our friends about it and try to get them to go, don’t we?  Certainly we can’t force them to go, the decision is theirs, but we can explain to them what we experienced and tell them it is at least worth checking out.  This is our great commission!

I do my best to explain this to others.  The world distorts the scriptures and what it means to have a relationship with God through Christ. Religion gets in the way and man’s ideals force us to think we have to behave a certain way for entry into God’s Kingdom or that we have to belong to a certain social club to gain audience with the King.  If you’ve done any reading of some of the first four gospels in the beginning of the New Testament, you can easily see that this is what the Pharisees and Sadducees had done with the Jewish belief system.  They made it into a contest of holiness and Jesus came down and threw them into a tailspin because they were missing the point.

Will you check it out?  Will you take your turn in talking with the King and receiving His reconciliation so you can be adopted as His son or daughter?  In my bible study the other night we discussed this Jewish concept of being adopted.  In their customs back then (not sure if it still holds true today) a blood son or daughter can be disinherited by their parents but an adopted son or daughter cannot.  An adopted parent makes the decision to adopt and therefore cannot change their minds.  This is exactly how God sees us when we accept His invitation to enter into a relationship with Him.

He paved the way, now He is just waiting for you to respond.  From my experience, it’s worth a shot.  It’s worth checking out if it’s true or not.  If it isn’t, well then you have nothing to lose, but if it is then you have everything to gain.

 

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