Reconciled through the Gospel

By Erin Bird

The word “reconciliation” is being used a fair amount in our culture these days, often paired with the word “racial.” The racial tension in many portions of our country is at a fever pitch, leading many to talk about the need for the races to be “reconciled.”

But what does the word “reconcile” truly mean?

The Oxford Dictionary on my Mac defines “reconcile” as a verb meaning “to restore friendly relations between.” When it comes to race, there clearly are not “friendly relations” existing among some people of various races. There are white people who distrust Blacks, Hispanics, and/or Asians, and there are Black people who distrust Whites, Asians, and/or Hispanics. And there are Asian people who distrust people of other races, and there are Hispanics that have racial distrust as well. So you can see why these broken racial relationships lead some people to rightly call for “racial reconciliation.”

But the word “reconcile” isn’t relegated just to the racial realm. It can be used in all sorts of areas of life.

  • If you are married, and you have have a big blow up with your spouse, you need to be reconciled.
  • If a friend betrays you by gossiping about you, you might hope for reconciliation.
  • Or if you are a parent and  one of your children walks away from a relationship with you,  a huge part you longs to be reconciled with your child.

Reconciled to God
The Gospel story from Scripture tells us that we had a broken relationship with God. When Adam and Eve ate the forbidden fruit as seen in Genesis 3, their relationship with God shattered, and every human born since has been born relationally-separated from their Creator. But God did not wait for Adam and Eve’s descendants to apologize and return to Him. Rather, He made the first move by coming to earth Himself and repairing the broken relationship by paying our penalty for us. Through the cross, He sought to “restore friendly relations between” Him and humanity.

This is the deepest form of reconciliation anyone could experience! Which means, if you have had the joy of a broken relationship being reconciled, whether with a spouse, friend, child, parent, boss, or whoever, that reconciled relationship actually points to Gospel reconciliation.

So this week may you find joy in knowing that God has “restores friendly relations between” you and Him through the death and resurrection of Jesus!