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What is Reconciliation?Do you often find yourself tired? Wouldn't you like to have complete peace and rest? Peace is a wonderful thing. But God's peace is even more wonderful than we can imagine. Does God have perfect peace? Could anything cause God not to have perfect peace? God hates evil, and He hates man's sin. So how can He have peace about letting sinners into His heaven? How can he reconcile the awful truth of our sin?
God sees all of humanity in just two representative men. Each of us is either in Adam, or in Jesus Christ. When we're born, we're in Adam. When we accept the death of Jesus Christ for our sin, then we're in Christ.
There is a big problem with being in Adam.
1 Corinthians 15:22 says, "For as in Adam all die, so in Christ all will be made alive."
We all begin in Adam, and Adam acted for us when he sinned. When he was separated from God by his sin, we too were separated from God. We do not have peace with God, so we have a need for reconciliation with Him.
Romans 5:12 says, "Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all men, because all sinned."
1 Corinthians 15:45 says, "The first man Adam became a living being; the last Adam (Jesus Christ) became a life-giving spirit."
Jesus is a life-giver. He freely gives eternal life to us when we're spiritually dead. God sees believers in a new position "in Christ." We're no longer in Adam, separated from God. We can have peace with God, because He has reconciled us to Himself.
1 Corinthians 12:13 says, "For we were all baptized by one Spirit into one body--whether Jews or Greeks, slave or free--and we were all given the one Spirit to drink."
Galatians 4:4-5 says, "4 But when the time had fully come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under law, 5 to redeem those under law, that we might receive the full rights of sons."
God adopted us, as a result of our position in Christ. We are given a position as full adult sons and daughters, including all its privileges. We can have peace because we're in the family of God.
Galatians 4:6 says, "Because you are sons, God sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts,
the Spirit who calls out, 'Daddy, Father."
We have assurance of this privileged position. This assurance gives us peace.
Romans 8:23 says, "We, who have the first fruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies."
Full manifestation of this will be experienced at the resurrection.
Romans 8:14-18 says, "Those who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God. For you did not receive a spirit that makes you a slave again to fear, but you received the Spirit of sonship. And by him we cry, 'Daddy, Father.' The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God's children. Now if we are children, then we are heirs--heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory. I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us."
We are not just friends with God. We are actually His own children. To those of you who have children, has your child ever disappointed you? Have they ever been in sin? But haven't you still loved them? Aren't they still your child? In the same way, our sin disappoints God. But He still loves us, and we're still His child. We can rest peacefully in the fact that we're still His children.
We are sanctified, set apart, and made holy and special. Great glory is coming for us. That glory will easily make up for our earthly sufferings. We can have peace because we know what's in store for us in eternity.
First, we are made holy by our position in Christ.
Hebrews 10:10 says, "We have been made holy through the sacrifice of the body of Jesus Christ once for all."
1 Corinthians 1:2 says, "To those sanctified in Christ Jesus and called to be holy, together with all those everywhere who call on the name of our Lord Jesus Christ."
We are also made holy in our daily walk with God.
Romans 6:13 says, "Do not offer the parts of your body to sin, as instruments of wickedness, but rather offer yourselves to God, as those who have been brought from death to life; and offer the parts of your body to him as instruments of righteousness."
We have power over sin in this life.
Finally, we will be made ultimately holy when we are in the presence of Christ Himself.
Ephesians 5:27 says, "and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless."
God has reconciled us to Himself. We now have peace with God, because of the removal of the wall of sin that separated us from Him.
2 Corinthians 5:14-21 says, "For Christ's love compels us, because we are convinced that one died for all, and therefore all died. And he died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves, but for him who died for them and was raised again. So from now on we regard no one from a worldly point of view. Though we once regarded Christ in this way, we do so no longer. Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come! All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting men's sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation. We are therefore Christ's ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ's behalf: Be reconciled to God. God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God."
We have been reconciled with God. He no longer counts our sin against us. We have peace with God, and He has peace with us. Believers are new creatures in Christ. We are His ambassadors. We are to represent Christ to the world. People should notice something different about us. We are now righteous sons and daughters of God Himself.
Is it fair that God placed our sins upon Jesus Christ. No, it isn't fair. It is only because of God's grace. We rightfully should have stayed spiritually dead because of our sins. But God gives us so much. He gives us life, and then He gives us more.
Romans 8:32 says, "He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all
how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things?"
1 Corinthians 4:7 says, "What do you have that you did not receive?
1 Corinthians 15:10 says, "By the grace of God I am what I am... yet not I, but the grace of God that was with me."
What do you have that you did not receive? God owns everything, but He gives to us in grace, and He expects us to be good stewards of His gifts, and to share our grace with others. There's not peace like that of being the recipients of grace.
What do you have that you did not receive? Grace makes us relax, because we have complete freedom from mental attitude sins. We have no anger, pride, hatred, jealousy, or envy. We have no lust, worry, self-pity, doubt, or guilt. Grace frees you from slavery to these things, and it lets you relax. Grace relieves all pressures and stress. It gives us happiness and a relaxed mental attitude. The Christian life is one which is relaxed and objective. It is not based upon emotions, experiences, entertainment, or fanfare.
Matthew 11:28-30 says, "Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light."
You will find rest for your souls. What do you have that you did not receive? But God exchanged our sins with Christ's righteousness. What a bargain! What a privilege to enjoy peace with God. What a relief to know that God is at peace toward us.
Owen Weber 2009