Because of sin, we have three problems:
Broken Creation (death, disease)
Internal (Because we are sinners, we don’t trust God and we’ve built our lives around things other than Him)
External (We have set ourselves up against God; He is rightly offended and opposed to us. He cannot let sin go undealt with and remain just)
What we need is reconciliation. We need for creation to be restored to its original design and we need to be reconciled to God. God’s response is to provide a way for us to be reconciled to him—first through Abraham and the Law and then, ultimately, through Jesus. (Genesis 12:1-3)
Jesus’ life was about reconciling all things back to God. (Colossians 1:19-22)
For Christ’s love compels us, because we are convinced that one died for all, and therefore all died. And he died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised again. So from now on we regard no one from a worldly point of view. Though we once regarded Christ in this way, we do so no longer. Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here! 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 people’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.
-2 Corinthians 5:14-20
As new creations in Christ, we are given new minds that want to learn about God and know Him and new desires that draw us to God and the things of God. This is what propels the church of God forward.
Be sure to listen to the sermon for a broad summary of how the Gospel spread from Jesus’ closest friends all the way to us in Columbia, SC!
So how does our church go about the ministry of reconciliation?
Midtown’s Philosophy of Ministry:
Gatherings and LifeGroups are our primary programs
The Bible calls us into:
A healthy church culture will embody each of these things which is why that’s our aim for LifeGroups.
Elements of LifeGroup time:
Discuss the sermon
Engage the heart
Catch up on life
Review the mission
According to feedback from LifeGroups, the area that we are the weakest in is mission so we are starting an initiative called “Every Group Around the Pool.” We want every LifeGroup gathered around the baptistery as someone they led to Christ gets baptized.
We have been given the ministry of reconciliation, and we find ourselves in a long line of believers who have faithfully proclaimed and ministered and watch God bless it by saving and redeeming and reconciling men and women to himself.