In a time long since passed, the prophet Isaiah recorded a powerful message from the God of Abraham. The Lord spoke to him, and the divine utterance has been passed down for centuries.
In the book of Isaiah, we read the words of the Lord assuring us that His Word will always prove to be successful. God Almighty promises that when He sends forth His Word, “it shall accomplish what I please, and it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it” (55:11). As believers, we know that God’s Word does not fail. It will always prosper.
We understand also that Saint John described the same Word in his account of the gospel. He explains that the very Word of the living God took on flesh. Christ Jesus was sent to this earth with a purpose.
As the Word incarnate, Jesus was destined to prosper. He took the sins of the world with Him to a splintery, torturous cross. It was there that He was sacrificed in order to reconcile a fallen creation to a loving Creator.
The blood of Christ reestablished the connection that was severed by sin. Those who placed their faith in the Savior could now enjoy a special relationship with their heavenly Father.
God Almighty had sent forth His Word in Christ Jesus, and the Son of God prospered in the task for which He was sent. We, the believers, are now reconciled. The barrier of sin that separated us from our Maker has been washed away by the precious blood of the Lamb.
In this perfect reconciliation, Christ shares with us several accomplishments, outlined in the second letter from the apostle Paul to the Corinthians.
We are now made acceptable. We can come before God with confidence that He will hear us. Wretched sinners, unworthy to approach the throne of heaven, are now granted access because of the greatest act of love the world has ever known.
Sin is unacceptable in the presence of a holy God. With the sacrifice made at Calvary, we are no longer relegated to the outer courts. The writer of Hebrews indicates that we may now “come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need” (4:16).
Christ Jesus has provided a new birth. For those who believe on Him, a fresh beginning is available. We have been re-created in the spiritual sense. In His Word, the Lord promises that “if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new” (2 Corinthians 5:17).
In the beginning, God Almighty spoke His Word into a void and chaotic rock, and creation appeared. New life filled the sky and sea. Earth became the beautiful blue and green globe we are all familiar with.
Likewise, in His infinite grace and love, God sent His Word to this world once again. The Word took on flesh, and brought forth a way for people to be re-created. New life had been offered. In purchasing our reconciliation, the Lord of Lords afforded us a new beginning.
We are given a wonderful example of godly restoration in Paul’s letter to Philemon.
Philemon was a friend and follower of the apostle. He was likely well off financially, as the Bible indicates he had a large home and, at least at one time, servants. Paul writes to this brother in the faith concerning Onesimus, a former servant of Philemon. The letter alludes to desertion and abandonment of duties. Onesimus was also believed to have stolen from his former master.
The apostle now sends the disgraced worker back to his former owner, requesting forgiveness as well as reconciliation. Paul had taken Onesimus under his wing and raised him up in the gospel of Jesus Christ, suggesting in his letter that “perhaps he departed for a while for this purpose, that you might receive him forever, no longer as a slave but more than a slave — a beloved brother . . .” (Philemon 1:15, 16).
Onesimus had become a new creature. He would now serve as a helpful brother in the faith to Philemon. He would no longer be an accused thief or slave to people. He would now be a forgiven soul, a redeemed follower of Christ.
It has become a sad fact that many people today lack purpose. They spend so much time searching, to no avail.
The reality is, they are searching in the wrong places. One more gift provided by the accomplishments of Christ Jesus is sweet purpose. The Lord gave to all of us a reason to live, and not only to live but also to live for Him.
In his aforementioned letter, Paul indicates that God has given to us “the ministry of reconciliation” (2 Corinthians 5:18). Every follower of Christ is called to such purpose. We are to serve as ministers of reconciliation. We are to spread the good news to every corner of the earth. Our heavenly task is to tell the world of the restoration and redemption made available by the grace of God Almighty.
There could be no greater work we could be called to. The Word of God, in relating the reconciliation ushered in by the Lord Jesus, ordains the saved of earth as “ambassadors for Christ, as though God were pleading through us” (v. 20). The notion of God pleading through us must be observed with great reverence.
The Almighty’s plea to His creation came in the form of a fragile babe, born in a stable. This young Savior grew to minister and demonstrate love to the needy. Innocent, He was arrested and tortured. Sinless, He took our sins upon Himself. He willingly took a cross upon His back and died a brutal death.
This was the plea from God to His beloved creation, a plea for hearts to return to Him. As ambassadors, allowing the Lord to plead through us, we must be prepared to go where our flesh dare not. We must be prepared to dive into muddy waters and buoy those souls who are sinking.
As a direct result of Christ’s triumph, we have been afforded blessing upon blessing. We have been reconciled to our Creator through His unending mercy. We have once again been granted access to the throne of grace. We have been tasked with a great purpose, a divine purpose. We are now ambassadors of the Lord, and waiting for us, a lost and dying world in need of hope.
Scripture quotations are from the New King James Version.