Reconciled by His life
For if while we were enemies, we were reconciled to God through the death of his Son, much more surely, having been reconciled, will we be saved by his life. Romans 5: 10
Paul certainly does have a way with words, yes? Romans is truly one of the great book/letters of the Bible, Old or New Testament. Paul has a keen sense of his own pathway to reconciliation with God which moved through the resurrected Jesus of Nazareth. Paul’s life as a man of pride, violence, and judgment was turned on its head when he was forced to see himself for who he truly was: a persecutor. Paul was an enemy of Christ and, even while an enemy, Christ died for him, too. So, when Paul was blinded on his way to Damascus and, ultimately, saw the forgiving nature of God in Christ, he was reconciled and saved by the resurrected life of Jesus.
Reconciliation moves us beyond sin, beyond our sense of not belonging, of anger, disappointment, and brings us back into relationship with God and one another. Rowan Williams is fond of saying that we were meant for God and we are meant for each other. We are exploring, in our Monday Lenten series (with First Church) on mass incarceration, the idea that we are all human; we are all made in the image of God and none of us can fall so far that we are not seen, loved, and known by God in Christ. We are called, as Christians, to pray for justice and work for systems that view people as Christ-people, equal, and all reconciled to the One God who gave His all for us. Christ’s coming means that we humans are all caught up in the reconciling nature of God…we may just not know it yet. One of the great gifts that we can give to another is to recognize he or she is a child of God, saved and redeemed by the same One who loves us.