Bible Text: 2 Corinthians 5:11-21 | Preacher: Pastor Steve
An outsider sees the possibilities we don’t see
An outsider does what we couldn’t do
An outsider pays for what we couldn’t afford
God is in the extreme makeover business transforming lives
2 Corinthians 5:17-21
(17)This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life
(18-19)And all of this is a gift from God, who brought us back to himself through Christ. And God has given us this task of reconciling people to him. For God was in Christ, reconciling the world to himself, no longer counting people’s sins against them. And he gave us this wonderful message of reconciliation.
(20-21)So we are Christ’s ambassadors; God is making his appeal through us. We speak for Christ when we plead, Come back to God! For God made Christ, who never sinned, to be the offering for our sin, so that we could be made right with God through Christ.
We are Ambassadors
Our message: Be new! Be reconciled! Be saved!
…so we are Christ’s ambassadors…
An Ambassador is a person sent from one sovereign power to another; and is supposed to represent the person of the sovereign by whom he is delegated.
Proverbs 13:17 A wicked messenger falls into trouble, but a faithful ambassador brings health.
The Testimony of an Ambassador
Acts 26:1-18 …I will deliver you from the Jewish people, as well as from the Gentiles, to whom I now send you, to open their eyes, in order to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins and an inheritance among those who are sanctified by faith in Me.
Our Call: I now send you!
Purpose: to open their eyes, in order to turn them
a. from darkness to light, and
b. from the power of Satan to God,
Hope: that they may receive forgiveness of sins and
Sanctification: an inheritance among those who are sanctified by faith in Me.
The Wardrobe of an Ambassador
Ephesians 6:10-20 …Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil
…take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand
…for which I am an ambassador in chains; that in it I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak
Deuteronomy 30:15-20 Now listen! Today I am giving you a choice between prosperity and disaster, between life and death. I have commanded you today to love the LORD your God and to keep his commands, laws, and regulations by walking in his ways. If you do this, you will live and become a great nation, and the LORD your God will bless you and the land you are about to enter and occupy. But if your heart turns away and you refuse to listen, and if you are drawn away to serve and worship other gods, then I warn you now that you will certainly be destroyed.
You will not live a long, good life in the land you are crossing the Jordan to occupy. Today I have given you the choice between life and death, between blessings and curses. I call on heaven and earth to witness the choice you make. Oh, that you would choose life, that you and your descendants might live! Choose to love the LORD your God and to obey him and commit yourself to him, for he is your life. Then you will live long in the land the LORD swore to give your ancestors Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.
Ministry of Reconciliation
Reconciliation is possible because of forgiveness and our obedience. God initiates reconciliation, but we have to respond.
Acts 16:31 Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and you shall be saved.
Salvation is by faith and faith alone. Unless a person believes and receives, they’ll never have reconciliation with God.
What holds us back?
1 Corinthians 11:30: But each one is tempted when he is drawn away by his own desires and enticed. Then, when desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, brings forth death
Proverbs 5:21-23 For the LORD sees clearly what a man does, examining every path he takes. An evil man is held captive by his own sins; they are ropes that catch and hold him. He will die for lack of self-control; he will be lost because of his incredible folly.
2 Corinthians 5: 20-21 So we are Christ’s ambassadors; God is making his appeal through us. We speak for Christ when we plead, Come back to God! For God made Christ, who never sinned, to be the offering for our sin, so that we could be made right with God through Christ.
Romans 8:26-27 In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express. And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints in accordance with God’s will.
Ask the Holy Spirit for Help and Insight
Are the events caused by:
an ongoing pattern of unwise behavior
satanic warfare (evil)
the lack of wisdom or godlessness
life in a world that deals with self-centeredness
Confess Sin: 1 John 1:6, 7, 9
Decide to Change Behavior: Romans 12:1-2; Hebrews 12:1; James 4:7,8
Fight evil: Ephesians 6:10–18; Luke 11:3, 13; Romans 8:26, 27
Confront with Spirit-filled Authority: 1 Peter 5:5; 2 Timothy 3:16, 17; 1 Corinthians 5:11
Worship the Lord: Job 2:11–13; Psalms 22:1–5, 12–18; Hebrews 4:14–16
Fall in love with Jesus: Mark 12:29-30 And you shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.