PRAYER PARTNERS AROUND THE WORLD (PPATW) - FOR THOSE WHO PASSIONATELY SEEK


2 Corinthians 5:11-21
11 Since, then, we know what it is to fear the Lord, we try to persuade others. What we are is plain to God, and I hope it is also plain to your conscience.
12 We are not trying to commend ourselves to you again, but are giving you an opportunity to take pride in us, so that you can answer those who take pride in what is seen rather than in what is in the heart.
 13 If we are “out of our mind,” as some say, it is for God; if we are in our right mind, it is for you.
14 For Christ’s love compels us, because we are convinced that one died for all, and therefore all died.

 15 And he died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised again.
*16 So from now on we regard no one from a worldly point of view. Though we once regarded Christ in this way, we do so no longer.
*17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!
* 18 All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation:
*19 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.
*20 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.
*21 God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.


reconciliation = as when former enemies agree to an amicable truce. the process of making consistent or compatible


INTRODUCTION

if you have ever done any counseling where there are two parties that have conflict with each other, it is a great joy when you can help reconcile the differences and re-unite the two in right relationship. A ministry of restoration and reconciliation is not just the call for counselors, but every believer has been given the opportunity as an Ambassador of Jesus Christ, to reconcile sinners back to God. Tonight, let’s look at this wonderful opportunity we have in the ministry of reconciliation.

*Are you a minister of God? How do you answer this question? Is the minister simply someone who stands in the pulpit on a weekly basis to expound the Word of God? Are Christians in general ministers of God? Do you pray that God will send forth laborers into His Harvest? Are you one of the laborers? Or do you expect God to send someone else? Do you feel a responsibility of making known the gospel of Christ and winning others to Him?

I.  Knowing the Consequences—v.11 we persuade men out of the knowledge we possess of the terror of the Lord. We realize even though hell is an outdated message to some, that it is still a relevant message for the sinner. We persuade men to surrender to Jesus Christ because we don’t want them to face an eternal separation from God.


II.  Love Compels Us—(constrains) v.14 we share Christ out of a two-fold love that we have in our hearts. First we share Christ out of a love for Him and His wonderful work on the cross. We share it took amazing grace to save us, and because He loved us so much, we share His gospel with others.But not only our love of Christ, but His love for the lost, compels us to share the message. Because it is His desire that none should perish we preach the good news. Because He desires that all would come to repentance, we carry His message into the highways and byways.It was the vocation of Christ to bear witness to the truth; it is our vocation to bear witness to Him. The first incentive for evangelism is loving obedience to God and His Christ, and the second is loving concern for men. Are we sharing with our neighbors the "bread from heaven" (John 6:32). 

III.  Convinced of the Work of Calvary—v.14-15

This ministry of reconciliation is birthed out of our conviction that Jesus died for all. He died for the entire world, God sent His Son, God gave His Son, that through His death we might have life everlasting. We share the message that just as we identify with His Death, since He is alive forevermore, we identify with His life. This message of reconciliation is that as through one man all sinned, through one man Jesus Christ, we are all made righteous.

IV.  The Blessed Opportunity—v.17 probably one of the greatest verses in all of scripture. This ministry of reconciliation shares that even though your past is one of separation from God, your new life in Christ is one of reunion with God. Your old life of the flesh is dead, and your new life in Christ, is a life of Spirit. You no longer walk around with guilt and condemnation, but you walk in the righteousness or right standing with God.

V.  The New Standing—v.18-19 God was in Christ and reconciled the world to Him through Christ. Jesus took our sins, the sin bearer, carried them to Calvary, bore our suffering and shame, and presented it to the Father. We are now accepted in the beloved. No greater love has any man
*than this, than that he would lay down his life for his friends. God commended His love for us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.

*VI.  Our Ministry and Mission—v.20-21Ambassadors for Christ- we don’t see ourselves as just church folks, members or weekend warriors. We see ourselves as constantly on the mission field. Everywhere we go we have this treasure in earthen vessels. You don’t have to go to the other side of the world, but across the street, on the jobsite, at school or anywhere you have the opportunity to share the message of salvation. Freely you have received, freely give.

VI.  Our Ministry and Mission—v.20-21 Ambassadors for Christ- we don’t see ourselves as just church folks, members or weekend warriors. We see ourselves as constantly on the mission field. Everywhere we go we have this treasure in earthen vessels. You don’t have to go to the other side of the world, but across the street, on the jobsite, at school or anywhere you have the opportunity to share the message of salvation. Freely you have received, freely give.

CONCLUSION

The Ministry of Reconciliation was committed to us by God. If we don't move His Word, it simply won't move. We are God's legs, arms, and mouth. One of the signs of a truly committed Christian is whether or not he or she shares God's Word with others. If someone didn't share God's Word with you, where would you be today? it is such a joy to see someone who you helped in a marital struggle doing well years later or who you helped to reconcile them in any type of relationship that they were separated from. Imagine how much joy there will be in heaven when you see someone who you reconciled to God through the message of Jesus Christ. The ministry of reconciliation isn’t reserved for just a select few, we all are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, that we might show forth the praises of him who hath called us out of darkness into His glorious light.