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The Reconciled Become Reconcilers

Big Mouth  •  Sermon  •  Submitted
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The Reconciled become Reconcilers

Intro

When Janene and I were getting ready to get married, all of her friends put a shower on for her and I was asked to fill out this questionnaire. And one of the questions was, what is your favorite smell? And I thought, well this is easy, the FEED YARD.
And when they asked Janene what she thought I said, she said my hair.
Man, we have to be careful about the things we say!
And so in this series we have been talking about we use our words to build up community.

And today we are finishing up the series, yes, its the last one… Talking about how we use our mouths.

Ambassador -

An ambassador is the President’s highest-ranking representative to a specific nation or international organization abroad. An effective ambassador has to be a strong leader—a good manager, a resilient negotiator, and a respected representative of the United States. A key role of an ambassador is to coordinate the activities not only of the Foreign Service Officers and staff serving under him, but also representatives of other U.S. agencies in the country. At some overseas posts, personnel from as many as 27 federal agencies work in concert with embassy staff.
Speaking the words of reconciliation is integral to God’s reconciliation to the world.
The reconciled speak words of reconciliation to others.
Reconciliation - is a change in relationship
2 Corinthians §6 Ambassador (2 Cor. 5:16–6:2)

The God who in Christ reconciled the world to himself uses the apostle as a mouthpiece to announce the good news and to summon people to accept the message.

Good Illustration

Someone recently passed this story on to me. It is a story about two brothers. They lived on adjoining farms, but they had a deep quarrel. They had often shared their resources, but that practice stopped; and there was nothing left but bitterness. One morning a brother we will call John answered a knock at his door. It was a carpenter. The carpenter asked if there was any work to do. John said that there was something he could do. He took the carpenter to where the two properties met and showed him how the other brother had taken a bulldozer and created a creek where the meadow used to be. John said, “I know he did this to make me angry. I want you to help me get even by building a big fence so I won’t have to see him or his property ever again.” So the carpenter worked hard all day. When he reported back to John, John noticed there was no fence. The carpenter had used his skill and built a bridge over the creek instead of a fence. John’s brother saw the bridge and was quite moved that his brother would do such a thing. The two brothers met in the middle and embraced. They saw the carpenter packing his tools and asked him to stay a while and do more work. The carpenter replied, “I’m sorry, but I have other bridges to build.” Does he have one to build in your life?

GOOD ILLUSTRATION

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ILLUSTRATION

Why to Seek the Lost

Tony Campolo, Let Me Tell You a Story (Word, 2000); submitted by Debi Zahn, Sandwich, Illinois
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On July 4, 1854, Charlie Peace, a well-known criminal in London, was hung. The Anglican Church, which had a ceremony for everything, even had a ceremony for hanging people. So when Charlie Peace was marched to the gallows, a priest read these words from the Prayer Book: "Those who die without Christ experience hell, which is the pain of forever dying without the release which death itself can bring."
When these chilling words were read, Charlie Peace stopped in his tracks, turned to the priest, and shouted in his face, "Do you believe that? Do you believe that?"
The priest, taken aback by this verbal assault, stammered for a moment then said, "Well…I…suppose I do."
"Well, I don't," said Charlie. "But if I did, I'd get down on my hands and knees and crawl all over Great Britain, even if it were paved with pieces of broken glass, if I could rescue one person from what you just told me."
The IVP New Testament Commentary Series: 2 Corinthians A Ministry of Reconciliation (5:18–21)

Paul was similarly appointed by God to administer the gospel on Christ’s behalf (hyper Christou; compare Eph 3:2). It is as though God himself were making a personal and direct appeal through Paul (v. 20).

Reconciliation is both an accomplished fact (v. 18) and a continuing process (v. 19). Although it is a done deed as a result of Christ’s work on the cross, it nonetheless must be personally appropriated. This is where Paul and the gospel ministry fit into the picture.

The IVP New Testament Commentary Series: 2 Corinthians A Ministry of Reconciliation (5:18–21)

But what we recount in song Paul proclaimed in earnest. For all that remains for humankind to do is to receive what God has effected. Yet how can they receive it unless they have heard about it? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them (Rom 10:14–15)? “How beautiful … are the feet of those who bring good news!” (Is 52:7). The demand for heralds remains a pressing one today. For the need is still as desperate and the news just as vital.

I am told that when President Bush was governor of Texas he had to deal with a lot of conflict. According to the sources I heard on the news one night in December (I tried to check this our with different sources and was unable to confirm it.) He came into office with a legislature that was in the opposite party. Early in his term he met with the opposition leader of the legislative branch with the hopes of building a cooperative coalition for the future.
The meeting was a failure. There was no trust and no agreement. There was plenty of conflict.
At the end of the session as Bush got up to leave he suddenly reached over and grabbed the opposition boss with both hands on his neck and gave him a big kiss on the cheek.
The man was completely stunned. He got red faced and stammered "What did you do THAT for!".
Bush said, "If I can’t get your cooperation and help, I’m at least going to get a kiss!"
The opposition leader broke up laughing and that was the beginning of friendship and the end of conflict.
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