The nation watches in horror as families pick up the pieces in the wake of the Orlando shooting. One of the big questions buzzing around asks whether it was a hate crime against the LGBTQ community or an act of terrorism from ISIL against the USA. Either way, it is a hate crime.
I listen to these news reports while meditating in 2 Corinthians 5:11-21 in preparation for the sermon this weekend. Paul says,
16 From now on, therefore, we regard no one from a human point of view; even though we once knew Christ from a human point of view, we know him no longer in that way. 17 So if anyone is in Christ, there is a new creation: everything old has passed away; see, everything has become new!18 All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ, and has given us the ministry of reconciliation; 19 that is, in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting the message of reconciliation to us. 20 So we are ambassadors for Christ, since God is making his appeal through us; we entreat you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God. 21 For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.1
…a ministry of reconciliation…
That is easier said than done. Our nation is divided over politics. Our churches are divided over theological ideologies. Our families are divided over various issues. We are often divided internally and “beside ourselves” over all of the above.
What does it mean to re-concile? Note the definitions of conciliate.
To re-concile is to make this true once again: to re-do it.
The only way that we, who view each other “according to the flesh,” can ever hope to be reconciled is when we constantly remind ourselves that we have been reconciled to God through Jesus Christ.
For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God. (2 Corinthians 5:21)
Again, easier said than done.
Lord, give us the wisdom to know how to be reconciled to one another. Give me the wisdom to know the words to say this coming weekend.
- The Holy Bible: New Revised Standard Version. (1989). (2 Co 5:16–21). Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers. [↩]