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Paul’s Message “Be Ye Reconciled to God.”

by Highland Community Church Bulletin

From the Highland Community Church Bulletin of  June 13, 2021

     The New Testament never speaks of God being reconciled to men, but always of men being reconciled to God. There is no question of pacifying an angry God. The whole process of salvation takes its beginning from God. It was because God so loved the world that He sent His Son. It is not that God is estranged from man but that man is estranged from God. It is not God who erected the barriers, but man. God’s message, the message which Paul brought, is an appeal from a loving Father to erring and wandering and to estranged children to come home where love is waiting for them. –William Barclay

     Motive for the Christian life.  Paul goes on to the moving motive of the whole Christian life. Christ died for all. Now to Paul the Christian is, in his favorite phrase, in Christ, and therefore the old self of the Christian died in that death, and he arose a new man, as new as if he had been freshly created by the hands of God. In this newness of life he has acquired a new set of standards. He no longer judges things by the standards which the world uses. He no longer sets on things the values the world sets on them. There was a time he had judged Jesus Christ by human standards, and in those days he had set out to blast the name of Christ from the earth and to obliterate His followers and to eliminate the Christian faith from the world. But not now. Now his standards are different. Now the man whom he had sought to wipe out from the very memory of man is to him the most wonderful person in the world, because it was Jesus Christ who won for him the friendship of God which he had all his life longed for and never found, until he found it in Him. –William Barclay

     Don’t break God’s heart. Suppose that a father sacrifices and toils to give his son every chance in life, suppose he surrounds him with love, and plans for his future with care, and does everything humanly possible to equip him for life. And then suppose the son feels no debt of gratitude. Suppose he never feels the obligation to repay by being worthy of all this. Suppose he fails, not because he has not the ability, but because he will not try, because he forgets the love that gave him so much and takes his own irresponsible way. That is what breaks a father’s heart; therein is the very essence of tragedy. It is when God gives men all His grace and they take their own foolish way and frustrate the grace which might have recreated them that once again Christ is crucified and the heart of God is broken. –William Barclay

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Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God.

2 corinthians 1:3-4