Ministering Reconciliation

Ministering Reconciliation

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.  (2 Cor 5:18-19)

This passage of the Bible informs us that God has given to us the ministry of reconciliation, which is a continuation of the ministry of our Lord, Jesus Christ.  The ministry of reconciliation is the message of the Gospel.

. . . 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.  21 And you, who once were alienated and enemies in your mind by wicked works, yet now He has reconciled 22 in the body of His flesh through death, to present you holy, and blameless, and above reproach in His sight— 23 if indeed you continue in the faith, grounded and steadfast, and are not moved away from the hope of the gospel which you heard, which was preached to every creature under heaven, of which I, Paul, became a minister.  (Col 1:20-23)

Jesus told us in John 14:6 that no one can be reconciled to God without Him.  Salvation is through Jesus Christ. 

Once we accepted Jesus as our Savior, we were then drafted into service to the Kingdom of God; and we became servants of Christ.  (1 Cor 4:1; Col 1:7)  As Christ’s servants, our charge is to share this good news with everyone whom we meet! 

“All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. 19 Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Amen.  (Mat 28:18-20)

Considering all that Jesus has done and continues to do for each one of us, we are honored to willingly give Him our lives in order to serve Him.  When we share His Good News, we’re ministering reconciliation!

HOW Does a Soul Prosper?

HOW Does a Soul Prosper?

Beloved, I pray that you may prosper in all things and be in health, just as your soul prospers.  (3 Joh 1:2)

How does a soul prosper?  What is a soul?  According to the Bible, we each have three parts:  a body, a soul, and a spirit.  (see 1 Thes 5:23) 

Each one of us is a spirit; we live in our own body; and we each have a soul.  Mankind was made in the image of God (Gen 1:26); and God is a Spirit (Joh 4:24).  Therefore we, too, are spirit-beings. 

We can see that we each have a soul that is distinctly separate and different from our spirit:

For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.  (Heb 4:12) 

Even though the spirit and the soul are joined together, they are still separate parts of every individual.  So, we live in a body (2 Cor 5:6, 8) that has a soul.  The soul is where the emotions, the will, and the intellect dwell. 

Did you see that according to 3 John 1:2, the level or degree to which we prosper, and/or obtain the health and healing of God is directly related to the level or degree that our soul (the thinking, reasoning part of us: The Mind) is prospering?

Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.  (Rom 12:2)

So our circumstances and situations can be changed once we have changed the way that we think about them!  How may we change our thoughts?  When we renew our minds with God’s promises contained in His Word, we change the way that we think about our situation.  And what naturally follows is that our emotions and will then follow where our thoughts take us.

God has given each one of us the gift of grace (Eph 2:8).  By God’s gift of grace, we may obediently and intentionally place our soul upon the path of prosperity.

You Shall Not Diminish

You Shall Not Diminish

Then out of them shall proceed thanksgiving and the voice of those who make merry;
I will multiply them, and they shall not diminish; I will also glorify them, and they shall not be small.
 (Jer 30:19, emphasis added)

In the verse above, the Lord says that His people shall not diminish. Diminish means to weaken; fade; or shrink.  Rather, the Lord says that HE will glorify them!  The Lord is saying that He will elevate, approve and celebrate His people!

The Lord’s plan for all of mankind is to give us life and not only that, but an ABUNDANT one! 

I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.  (Joh 10:10)

The Lord tells us that He is pleased when His people prosper, and that trusting in Him will bring us prosperity.

Let them shout for joy and be glad, who favor my righteous cause; and let them say continually, “Let the Lord be magnified, Who has pleasure in the prosperity of His servant.”  (Ps 35:27)

But he who trusts in the Lord will be prospered.  (Pro 28:25b)

Beloved, I pray that you may prosper in all things and be in health, just as your soul prospers.  (3 Joh 1:2)

The Lord’s blessings are upon His people:

Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!  (Ps 118:26a)

Then the multitudes who went before and those who followed cried out, saying:  “Hosanna to the Son of David! ‘Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord!’
Hosanna in the highest!”
  (Mat 21:9)

You can see from this handful of Bible verses that God certainly has put ample promises in His Word that are intended to bless, benefit, and prosper us.  Therefore, we shall not diminish.

Forget Not

Forget Not

Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all His benefits: Who forgives all your iniquities, Who heals all your diseases . . . (Ps 103:2-3, emphasis added)

We, as God’s children, mustn’t forget all of the benefits and blessings of our salvation.  The verse above mentions two of these blessings:  forgiveness and healing.  These are supernatural benefits of our salvation.

This is my comfort in my affliction, for Your word has given me life.  (Ps 119:50, 52)  The Word of God gives us life—life in every facet and dimension of our lives.  He is the one who actually upholds and sustains our lives!  (Ps 3:5; 71:6; Isa 46:3b, 4)

There are so many blessings that God pours out upon us, that we can become oblivious and even numb to them!  We need to wake up and start noticing what God has done and is doing constantly for us.  Look around you and perceive your blessings.

And the covenant that I have made with you, you shall not forget, nor shall you fear other gods.  (2 Kgs 17:38)  God does not forget the covenant that He made with man.  He wants us to remember it, too.  Not only that, but He says that He will NEVER forget us!  (Isa 49:15) Nor do we ever need to fear other gods or the gods of other people.

So we should find it pretty easy to REMEMBER and to meditate upon the fact that the Lord is:

  • Our reward (Gen 15:1)
  • Our Rock (Ps 18:2; 31:3; 71:3)
  • Our very present help in trouble (Ps 46:1)
  • Our open heaven (Joh 1:51)
  • Our Comfort (Ps 86:17; 2 Cor 1:3-4)
  • Our Deliverer (Ps 18:2; 40:17; 70:5)
  • Our Redeemer (Ps 19:14; 78:35; Pro 23:11)
  • Our Prince of Peace (Isa 9:6)

The list above is very abbreviated.  I could go on and on; and still not cover every blessing that the Lord bestows upon those who love and serve Him.  Remember these blessings and be thankful.

Light or Darkness

Light or Darkness
  • Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; who put darkness for light, and light for darkness; who put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter! (Isa 5:20)
  • And God saw the light, that it was good; and God divided the light from the darkness.  (Gen 1:4)
  • Then I saw that wisdom excels folly as light excels darkness. (Ecc 2:13, emphasis added)

These passages from Scripture (shown above) remind us that God calls the light good, and He wants the life that’s within each one of us to emanate from the Light Who is Jesus Christ within us.  (Jo 1:4; 8:12)  Jesus Christ is the Light and He is good.  We must make the decision about whether we want to obey the Lord, and to allow His light within us to shine!

  • Therefore take heed that the light which is in you is not darkness. (Lk 11:35)

Even as Jesus was sent into the world as a light for all of mankind, He wants us now to show forth His light so that more people may receive salvation through Jesus Christ.

  • For it is the God who commanded light to shine out of darkness, who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.  (2 Cor 4:6)

So how may we shine the light of salvation into the darkening world around us?  Yes, the Bible gives us answers to that as well!

  • If you extend your soul to the hungry and satisfy the afflicted soul, then your light shall dawn in the darkness, and your darkness shall be as the noonday.   The Lord will guide you continually, and satisfy your soul in drought, and strengthen your bones; You shall be like a watered garden, and like a spring of water, whose waters do not fail.  (Isa 58:10-11)

By doing good works, by sharing the Good News of the gospel with all people, and by living obediently to the Word of God, we shine the Light of Jesus Christ and His salvation into the darkness.