The primary reason for Jesus coming to this world was to reconcile man to God. It was the purpose and goal of God the Father to establish a means by which man would be able to step aside from sin and come into a place where God is prepared to help man be reconciled to Him.
The Way of this reconciliation is through Jesus Christ. It was His life, death and resurrection that enabled the reconciliation to occur. And even more, God through Jesus Christ established the path for us to not only be reconciled to Him but to also walk a path that would lead to perfection in Jesus Christ.
So let us look at this a little more and see what this reconciliation is all about and what it means beyond the basics of this reconciliation.
Enemies Of God
The first thing we must understand is that man in his worldly, fleshly and sinful state is an enemy of God. There is no neutral ground in the walk with God, you are either a friend or a foe, believer or non-believer on the side of God or an enemy.
Jesus made this point abundantly clear when He said in Luke 11:23:
Whoever is not with me is against me, and whoever does not gather with me scatters.
There is no clearer message in these words than that if you are not on the side of God you are an enemy of God. And anyone who has not yet made a decision to be with The Lord is standing on the opposite side of the fence and thus are enemies of The Lord.
We have all been there before coming to The Lord. But we are thankful that God in His infinite mercy shows us forgiveness and by His grace gives us the chance to be reconciled to Him in Jesus Christ.
Justified By His Blood
And we see in the words of these few verses of Romans 5 the method of this reconciliation. In verses 9-10 we see the following.
9 Since, therefore, we have now been justified by his blood, much more shall we be saved by him from the wrath of God. 10 For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, now that we are reconciled, shall we be saved by his life.
It was by the blood of Jesus poured out for us, the righteous for the unrighteous and the holy for the unholy, that we were reconciled to God.
The perfection of the sacrifice of Jesus and the blood of His sacrifice so far outweighs anything else that it is truly able to wash away all the blemishes with which man is tarnished through sin. This is how it works.
Under the old covenant law animal blood sacrifices were offered for the sins of the people. Death is the result of sin as Paul writes in Romans 6:23, “The wages of sin is death.” We “earn” death because we sin. Actually it is probably better put as we build up a debt throughout our life by sinning and that debt can only be paid by our death. The judgement following sin is to die and we pay off our debt of sin against God when we die.
But nobody wants to die. God doesn’t even want us to die. He wants man to be purified from sin and to do what is right. But death is the only way that the debt of sin could be paid and satisfied. As the writer of Hebrews in chapter 9:23 says,
Indeed, under the law almost everything is purified with blood, and without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of sins.
So God established the death of animals as the means of receiving forgiveness of sin and being cleansed from sin under the old covenant. But those sacrifices could not make a person perfect or permanently cleanse a persons conscience from sin. Those sacrifices could not change a person and transform them into the image of God.
And that is where Jesus comes in and the plan of God for reconciliation.
Walking The Path To Life
God established the process of the death of animals in place of the person to atone for sin. And extending this into the new covenant God provided a perfect death in Jesus Christ who died but did not deserve or earn the wages of sin because He did not sin. That is why His sacrifice is perfect. Jesus did not sin and so He should never have died and thus death could not hold Him.
Then God established His Grace which allows people to replace their own death with the death of Jesus and to “put on the death” of Christ as their own. He established this by faith so that when a person is baptised they die with Christ as they go down into the waters and are raised new creations, resurrected with Jesus Christ as they are lifted out of the waters of baptism.
And all we need to do to receive this grace and this reconciliation is to believe it. Faith is the key o this amazing gift from God for when we believe, we receive God’s grace and are reconciled to Him.
Now the point of this reconciliation is not the end of the journey but only the beginning. The law was unable to make a person perfect in the sight of God because it showed up sin for what it was. But in the grace of God we are given perfection as a gift through faith and in God’s grace.
However the road does not end there for this is just the beginning. God wants His people not to just be perfect through faith but through the way we think, act and behave. God wants His people to be able to make the right decisions and be obedient to His words and His ways.
And that takes time. And it takes more input from God.
This was the purpose of the teachings of the new covenant that Jesus gave firstly to His disciples, and through them to all who come to Jesus through their work.
This is the beginning of the walk we must take in Jesus Christ. We start our life walking in sin like the rest of the world. Then when we come to Jesus we begin walking in hope of a better future. We learn how to walk in the spirit which gives us the ability to overcome the passions, lusts and desires of the flesh that lead to sin. And when we grow in these ways we learn how to walk in love as God loves. We learn to walk with others in the love of God for that is what He wants us to do.
It is because of the love of God and His desire for His people to learn to live in love in harmony with Him and with each other that He offered us the reconciliation that is only possible through the blood of Jesus Christ. So learn His ways and be reconciled to Him and ask, seek and knock on His door to find the fulness of what He has to offer.
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