EDITORIAL ADVISORY BOARD: God's central message is of reconciliation

2013-03-31T00:00:00Z EDITORIAL ADVISORY BOARD: God's central message is of reconciliationBy Paul Appold nwitimes.com
March 31, 2013 12:00 am  • 

"Alleluia! Christ is risen! He is risen, indeed!"

In many churches today, throughout the world, these words will be the greeting from the pastor as the worship service begins. They are words of ultimate joy for Christians, and truly all people, because they remind us Jesus Christ has won the victory, over sin, death and the devil. His resurrection from the dead is His crowning achievement to bring people back to Him.

In the past few weeks I have been captivated by the miniseries titled, “The Bible” on the History Channel. Mark Burnett and Roma Downey have done a wonderful job accurately depicting the accounts of the Bible and summarizing them into a beautiful 10-hour mini-series. Of course, there have been major parts that were left out for the sake of time, but it has done a fine job of showing God’s compassion for all people.

Any time we try to summarize the Bible, it is difficult. It is such a vast book with so much to say. But, if there was one word that would represent God’s will for people, I believe it would be “reconciliation.”

God is on a mission to reunite people with Him. In truth, this is the reason His Son Jesus Christ was sent into this world. His birth, life, ministry, death and resurrection were all about reconciliation.

Some people have said “The Bible” was very violent. I agree there are parts that are extremely violent. However, God’s desire is always clear. He created this world and all of the people in it. He wants them back in a loving relationship with Him.

Sometimes today when people have strayed apart, it takes a great act of love to bring them back. We might call it “tough love.” That’s exactly what God has done for us in Jesus Christ. He suffered death for us. He was buried for us. And today we celebrate that He has risen from the dead for us. We have been reconciled to God through faith in Jesus Christ.

This reconciliation gives us hope in our life today. We might, at times, think a situation in our life is hopeless. The situation may be very complicated, but Easter gives us hope. Since Jesus Christ was raised from the dead, there is no situation in life that is hopeless.

Today, on this Easter Sunday, I encourage you to take your troubling situations to God in prayer. He is the One who loves to bring reconciliation to people’s lives. I pray  this will happen in your life as well. Maybe it can happen today.

Have a wonderful Easter!

The Rev. Paul Appold is pastor of Trinity Lutheran Church in Lansing. The opinions are the writer's.

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