When Jesus gave his followers the last commission at the end of the Book of Matthew which is often referred to as the “Great Commission,” he began by saying “all authority has been given to me.” He also said, “As the father has sent me, so I send you.” God sent Jesus to be the mediator, the representative who would reconcile sinful man to a holy God. His task was accomplished when he said “it is finished” before he died on the cross. We now have been given the task of being God’s spokesman for this wonderful message. Paul makes this perfectly clear in 2 Corinthians 5:20, he says, “Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us. We implore you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God.”

Paul seems to be arguing that he is and that we are God’s ambassadors, and we are such during a time of war. There is a battle going on between God and mankind. Isaiah 59:2 says, “Your iniquities have made a separation between you and your God, and your sins have hidden his face from you so that he does not hear.” The only hope for mankind is reconciliation with God. Christ came, and Christ sent us, to proclaim that reconciliation. The war is over! God is now at peace with us, he has presented us with His peace plan. It’s the plan in which God completely forgives our “iniquities” and our “sins” and offers a new and fresh relationship with Himself, if we will just receive it.

Notice the emotion connected with the plea. It says “we implore you.” This is a passionate plea. Now you have to see that Paul is not calling us to reconcile ourselves. The passive voice of the verb must be translated as “be reconciled.” It’s to receive God’s offer, not to make a contrary offer. There’s no negotiation in God’s offer of peace with us. This is a passionate offer of peace because peace with God is the result of reconciliation. The atoning, substitutionary death of Christ brings reconciliation and peace with God. Beautifully, the promise of this peace was made long ago by the prophet who condemns us for our sin. Isaiah also says, “But he was wounded for our transgressions; he was crushed for our iniquities; upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace, and with his stripes we are healed.” As Ambassadors, we must always show respect to all whom we address. And as Ambassadors we’ve been entrusted with the most wonderful message in the world. We must be faithful to this commission.

“For our appeal does not spring from error or impurity or any attempt to deceive…we have been approved by God to be entrusted with the gospel, so we speak, not to please man, but to please God.” 1 Thessalonians 2:3-4