2 Corinthians 5:17
This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun!
A new person, the old life gone, a new life begun….
For those of us who have gone through this transformation I think it easy to forget what it was like b.c. (before Christ). And because of that we forget what it is like for those who have not yet experienced that change.
We yell at them from the street corner or from social media.
We offer judgement with no mention of redemption….
We fail to tell the prodigals of this world the way back, we only point out where they are….
In his classic book “Basic Christianity” John Stott says
“We are not bringing people to a collection of religious ideas or a catalog of rules. We are bringing the Good News. Not an invitation that tells them what they need to do, but an invitation to see what God has done” And what has God done?
In 2 Corinthians 5:17-19 we read
“17 Therefore, if anyone is united with the Anointed One, that person is a new creation. The old life is gone—and see—a new life has begun! 18 All of this is a gift from our Creator God, who has pursued us and brought us into a restored and healthy relationship with Him through the Anointed. And He has given us the same mission, the ministry of reconciliation, to bring others back to Him. 19 It is central to our good news that God was in the Anointed making things right between Himself and the world. This means He does not hold their sins against them. But it also means He charges us to proclaim the message that heals and restores our broken relationships with God and each other”.
I believe God’s expectations for us and His intentions for those who are lost are clear.
Here are things to remember when we are reaching out to the lost.
First- The bad news. “You see, all have sinned, and all their futile attempts to reach God in His glory fail”. Romans 3:23
Second- The Good News. God has pursued us that all might be brought into restored and healthy relationship with Him through Jesus Christ
Third-He has given us the same mission, the ministry of reconciliation to bring others back to Him
When our comments are uninvited, harsh, and impersonal, when there is no compassion, mercy or grace we push people away from the light, we fail in our mission.
In Matthew 4:16 we read
“In these places, the people who had been living in darkness
saw a great light.
The light of life will overtake those who dwelt in the shadowy darkness of death”.
We understand that the Light is Jesus Christ and those living in darkness must be introduced to Him.
To bring the Good News that God has done everything that is necessary to make all things new.
If anyone is in Christ
The old is gone
The new has come
Let us pray that our family, our friends, those in our workplace, in our world would be drawn to that light through our actions, and our words.
That He would make all things new!
All Scripture with the exception of Matthew 4:16 taken from “The Voice” Bible copyright Thomas Nelson publishers
Matthew 4:16 New Living Translation copyright Tyndale House Publishers