2 Corinthians 5:17-21
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come! 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 men’s sins against them. And He has committed to us the message of reconciliation. 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. God made Him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in Him we might become the righteousness of God.
Jesus came to reconcile mankind to God. When He ascended to the Father, He passed on the baton of His mission to His church. This passage begins with a declarative statement: “If anyone is in Christ, he/she is a new creation.” When a person says, “Yes!” to Jesus, a wonderful process begins where the Holy Spirit begins to work in this person’s heart to transform them into the image of Christ. The church plays a key role in this journey of spiritual maturity (discipleship).
The church is the spiritual incubator where true spiritual transformation is possible. Discipleship is always done in the context of relationships. As we learned yesterday, this is Jesus’ model for discipleship. In Scripture, we see this formula at work: The Word of God (Transformational Truth) when combined with Relational Environments (Spiritual Incubators) produces Transformational Discipleship. When a believer is being discipled properly, he/she will become a new creation in Christ.
Transformational discipleship will lead the believer to embrace the responsibility of the message and ministry of reconciliation. This new creation in Christ will carry on Jesus’ ministry and work in the world. True discipleship causes the believer to embrace the MISSION of Christ. Jesus came to seek and save that which was lost. Jesus came to reconcile mankind to God. Spiritual maturity causes us to reflect His character and His heart for lost humanity.
The Big Question
Are you a new creation in Christ? What has your discipleship journey looked like? What people have been influential in your discipleship journey? In what ways are you being an ambassador for Christ? Who is in your top 3? Who are you pouring into spiritually? In what ways does your life reflect the character of Jesus.
Spend some time in prayer meditating on what God revealed to you today.