The Ministry of Reconciliation

Questions for personal reflection and group discussion 

Sarah Bartley - August 13, 2023

The Ministry of Reconciliation

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Read 2 Corinthians 5:14-6:2

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:[a] 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[b] for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.

As God’s co-workers we urge you not to receive God’s grace in vain. For he says,

“In the time of my favor I heard you,
    and in the day of salvation I helped you.”[c]

I tell you, now is the time of God’s favor, now is the day of salvation.

  1. Can you think of some spaces in the world that are in desperate need of reconciliation? What about some spaces in your own world?
  2. What did it look like for the Corinthians to need reconciliation? Do you remember the context in which Paul is writing?
  3. This passage gives us a vision for the new creation that has come in Christ. As  people ‘made new’ in Christ, what does this passage point to as our responsibility?
  4. We heard on Sunday that reconciliation with God and reconciliation with those around us are tied up in one another. How does this passage point to this reality?
  5. What are some ways in your own life that you see a need to be reconciled with God, so that he can bring reconciliation with others?
  6. On Sunday we talked about the church as a ‘sandbox’ in which we can develop our muscles of reconciliation. What does this mean? How can we seek to ‘develop our muscles’ here?
  7. What did you sense God saying to you through this passage?