ONE: The Ministry of Reconciliation
ONE Message Series
2 Corinthians 5:16-19 and Galatians 3:26-28
The Ministry of Reconciliation
“So from now on we regard no one from a worldly point of view” (2 Cor. 5:16).
When you are introduced to someone for the very first time what questions do you typically ask them? Why those questions? What other things lend to your first impression of that person?
In 2 Corinthians 5, Paul claims “…from now on we regard no one from a worldly point of view.” What do you think he means by that? What does that look like? What is the alternative to seeing others from a “worldly” point of view?
Just a few sentences before that Paul mentions “…those who take pride in what is seen rather than what is in the heart.” How does that relate? Is Paul saying that we ought to size others up based not on the exterior but on the interior? How is that even possible? How do we really know what is in another person’s heart? What is Paul getting at?
Paul goes on to say that God “…gave us the ministry of reconciliation.” How does that relate to what Paul has already said about regarding others from a worldly point of view? Where do you see the people of God already at work in this ministry of reconciliation? Where do you wish you saw the church more specifically involved in reconciliation? Where are we missing the mark on this?
Where are you already engaged in a ministry of reconciliation that acknowledges the dignity of each human created in the image of God? Where do you personally find reconciliation most difficult? What are the barriers to reconciliation?
In Galatians 3, Paul seems to get a bit more specific. “There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ.” Where do you see need for greater reconciliation within the church as it relates to these specific categories? What about for you personally?
A ministry of reconciliation is desperately needed in our day. Pray for it on behalf of yourself and the church. Then ask God how you might immediately begin to participate in what He is already doing.