May 18, 2022·Jordan Fehlen
This week, we read one of my favorite texts in the New Testament, 2 Corinthians 5.
The Apostle Paul pioneered the church in the city of Corinth, but those he left there had lost sight of Jesus. They got wrapped up in status, fame, and self-promotion. They started flocking to teachers and leaders who were well-dressed, smooth-talkers, and self-promoting. They started to question Paul and his authority. Paul wasn’t like those other teachers. He was poor, humble, not flashy — not as hyped up as the Corinthians would have liked.
Because of this, Paul visits them in Corinth to correct them and refocus them back to Jesus and what He did on the Cross. He points them away from self-promotion and toward Jesus’ reconciling work on the Cross.
He writes to them, in chapter 5, verses 16-21…
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. Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here! 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 was 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.
Paul is presenting Jesus’ death on the Cross not only as the definitive work of salvation, but a picture of who God is, and the driving motivation for how you and I live our lives. The Cross isn’t simply about WHAT Jesus did for you, but it’s WHO God is, and a template for HOW you and I are to do everything we do…
The Cross is a WORK
It’s a WINDOW
And it’s also a WAY
Because of what Jesus did, you and I have been reconciled to God. Our sins are no longer counted against us.
If that wasn’t good enough — the Cross also gives us a snapshot of God’s very character and plan. He is a God who gives His very life for the reconciliation of all things.
And it doesn’t stop there — God isn’t just reconciling you, He’s not only reconciling the world… but He invites you and me into that reconciliation project. Not as spectators, but as co-workers or ambassadors.
And it all centers on Jesus and the reconciling work He did on the Cross.
What Jesus did on the Cross is a WORK of salvation; it’s a WINDOW into God’s very nature; it’s a WAY that you and I have been invited to follow.
Pastor Jordan Fehlen