|Sin and its consequences.||God’s provision in Christ.|
|Being under the judgement of God.||Justification and forgiveness.|
|Being separated from God.||Reconciliation.|
Let us now look at another significant word describing God’s provision in the gospel.
When our fore parents sinned, they died. In that moment they were aware that their relationship with God had changed; there was now a great gulf between them. It was a gulf that only God could span. It was too massive for man to find a way across. God in His grace took the initiative to make a way.
“For there is one God and one Mediator between God and men, the Man Christ Jesus, who gave Himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time” 1 Timothy 2:5,6.
“He deigns in flesh to appear
Widest extremes to join
To bring our vileness near, and make us all Divine;
And we the life of God shall know
For God is manifest below.”
Charles Wesley in number 60 of Hymns of Eternal Truth.
Here is the revelation of the coming of the God Man – Christ Jesus. He is fully Man and fully God. As both holy God and perfect Man He alone is able to give Himself a ransom for all. He spans the gap, He bridges the gulf. His sacrifice alone is sufficient to bring together holy God and sinful man.
Ephesians 2:13-18 tells us “But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ. For He Himself is our peace, who has made both one, and has broken down the middle wall of separation, having abolished in His flesh the enmity, that is, the law of commandments contained in ordnances, so as to create in Himself one new man from the two, thus making peace, and that He might reconcile them both to God in one body through the cross, thereby putting to death the enmity. And He came and preached peace to you who were afar off and to those who are near. For through Him we both have access by one Spirit to the Father”.
Not only was there a great gulf fixed between God and man but also the New testament describes a distinction between the Jews and the Gentiles. The Jews had been the people of God with all the benefits and privileges associated with that status, but the Gentiles – the non- Jewish world – were considered in comparison to be “afar off”, not “near”.
In the death of Christ, He has brought both together those afar off, and those near, and created one new Man. In this new Man all distinctions are rendered none and void.
“For it pleased the Father that in Him all the fulness should dwell, and by Him to reconcile all things to Himself, by Him, whether things on earth or things in heaven, having made peace through the blood of His cross”.
And you, who once were alienated and enemies in our mind by wicked works, yet now He has reconciled in the body of His flesh through death, to present you holy, and blameless, and above reproach in His sight”. Colossians 1:19,22.
By His grace we have received the reconciliation. Not only that we should be brought near to God again by the work of His cross but also that He has entrusted us to share this great ministry. We have received the reconciliation.
“For if when we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life. And not only that, but we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received the reconciliation.” Romans 5:10,11.
“Now all things are of God, who has reconciled us to Himself through Jesus Christ, and has given us the ministry of reconciliation, that is, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not imputing their trespasses to them, and has committed to us the word of reconciliation.
Now then, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were pleading through us; we implore you on Christ’s behalf, be reconciled to God. For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him”. 2 Corinthians 5:18-21.
Believers have received the reconciliation and are now called to act here on earth as ambassadors for Him. They implore and plead for others on behalf of Christ.
The church must exhibit the life of the one new man. In Christ there is only one man.
“Do not lie to one another, since you have put off the old man with his deeds, and have put on the new man who is renewed in knowledge according to the image of Him who created him, where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcised nor uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave nor free, but Christ is all and in all”. Colossians 3:9-11.