Recap | Citizens | Ambassadors

This weekend Bill White delivered the second sermon of our “Citizens” series. As we continued to wrestle with the idea of what it means to be citizens of heaven making our way through this world, this weekend we looked at the mission that we have been called to. It is crucial to delineate between that which we are concerned about, and that which we are responsible for. Christ has given all believers resources and opportunities, and we are accountable for the way we handle those situations. We will look at three different passages that paint a picture of what it means to be an ambassador for God.

Starting in 1 Corinthians 9:19-23, Paul addresses how Christians are supposed to handle living amongst different types of people. Paul explains how he works to find common ground with all people, Jews and Gentiles alike, in order to show them the Gospel. Paul shows how, as a Christian, we are not meant to take our freedoms for granted and make ourselves comfortable. We are meant to let go of our freedoms for the sake of the greater mission of the Gospel. Paul can serve anyone and meet them on their terms because he is free in Christ. That is the power that Christ’s freedom offers us all.

In 2 Corinthians 5:17-21, Paul further explains what God’s ultimate mission is. He wants to reconcile the world to Himself and He wants to use us as ambassadors of that ministry. God chose to make us a part of His mission, and He appeals to the world through us. He entrusted us with this message of reconciliation, a message that is so important to Him, He sent His son to die for it. God made Christ to be sin so that the world could be brought back into a relationship with Him.  And He uses our lives and the way we relate to this world to spread the message. As ambassadors, we are not called to fix the world, nor are we meant to be citizens of it. Ambassadors are placed in a foreign land in order to positively display the values of our home. Our job is to represent Christ in this world in such a way that all types of people are drawn to us, and ultimately Him.

The final passage we studied this weekend was 1 Corinthians 5:9-13. Paul tells the people of Corinth to not be isolated and try to withdraw from the sins of the world. It is not the church’s responsibility to judge those outside of the church. But, Paul is clear to say that we are called to separate ourselves from anyone who claims the name of Christ, yet is living a life that contradicts the Gospel. Having hypocrisy weakens our ability to communicate Christ to the world.

As we consider the magnitude of problems facing our world, we must remember what we are responsible for. The Gospel offers strength and comfort to help us be the ambassadors we are called to be, even when faced with tension or persecution. Let us be comforted and go out as members of Christ’s family, willing to love all those around us, no matter how different. Let us be true ambassadors.

-Carly Caldwell

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