Christ’s Ambassadors (16-06-21)
Bible Reading: 2 Corinthians 5:17-21
If anyone is in Christ, they are 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 people'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.
There seems to be lots of television programmes about makeovers. Whether it is your garden, your house, your diet or your face, there is a programme that will give you a makeover. There are also crime dramas where someone is put into a witness protection programme and given a new identity and a new location.
In all of these programmes the changes are usually just cosmetic. It is still the same house but with different décor. It is the same garden, it has simply been revamped, and like all gardens, without a lot of care it will revert back to its wild state. The protected witness has a new name but is still the same person deep down.
In contrast to this, Paul is saying that when we become Christians, the change that God brings about in us is far from being just cosmetic, it goes right to the very core of our nature. Externally we may look the same, but internally we have changed from a caterpillar to a butterfly. We have gone through the chrysalis stage by dying to our old selves and we have emerged as a butterfly.
All of this is possible because Jesus has died for us and reconciled us to God through faith. Our old nature has died with Christ on the cross and we have been given a new nature; we have become a new creation. When we are tempted to revert back to our old ways, it is good to remind ourselves that we have been set free from the old life and can choose to live a new life.
As it soars around the garden, or basks in the sunlight, what do you think a butterfly might say to a caterpillar it saw grazing on a leaf? Would it not encourage it to go through the chrysalis stage so that it too could enjoy the freedom and the beauty that it has discovered as a butterfly?
Is that not what it means for us to be Christ’s ambassadors?
Thank you, Lord Jesus, that through faith in you I am a new creation.
As I live in the new life that you have given to me,
help me be your ambassador and lead others to faith in you.
O for a thousand tongues to sing