Reconciled to God

Romans 5:10  •  5 min. read  •  grade level: 7
Reconciliation with God is a rich result of the gospel. It is equally simple and sure. In the nature of things God alone can be the unerring judge of it. He accordingly bears witness to it as a spiritual fact due to the death of Christ, and true of every believer. The guilt and the enmity were entirely in us, as we were naturally. In His love God intervened on our behalf when we lay in our sins, evil, helpless, hopeless. He intervened in His Son Who died for us that we might be justified in virtue of His blood; for He sent Him as propitiation for our sins. No other way could glorify Him or justify us. Here only is love conciliated with justice; but it is God's love and God's righteousness, for in us, ungodly and sinners, was neither. Therefore it is for His glory, and according to His grace, and hence not of works but of faith, that no flesh should glory, but “he that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord.” So speak both Old and New Testaments.
What can be plainer than the testimony of scripture? “For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by (or, through) the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life” (Rom. 5:1010For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life. (Romans 5:10)). The Holy Spirit presents the efficacy of Christ's death unambiguously, that the believer may give to the winds his fears and treat his doubts as of the enemy. God's love is the source of the blessedness; Christ's death guarantees it as not only of grace but righteous. Only so is God just and justifying him that has faith in Jesus. Thus is the alienation met holily. Divine love laid the sins on the head of the sole adequate Victim; on Him, not on the sinner, was our evil judged unsparingly by God; and the glad tidings of that mighty work He sent far and wide, that through Christ's name everyone that believeth on Him should receive remission of sins (Acts 10:4343To him give all the prophets witness, that through his name whosoever believeth in him shall receive remission of sins. (Acts 10:43)).
Only with remission there is far more. As we read here, the believer is “reconciled to GOD.” Not that God was alienated; for He so loved the world as to give His only begotten Son. But He abhorred, and cannot but judge, sin. Therefore must the Son of man be lifted up. “Christ died for us,” that we, not our sins, might be spared; that our sins, not ourselves, might be put away from before God; that we might be reconciled to God, and expiation be made for our sins. Christ has effected both for every believer; yea, He has wrought a work of such God-glorifying and infinite value, that God can righteously send a message of reconciliation into all the world and to all the creation. And on what a wondrous basis! Him Who knew no sin He made sin for us, that we might become God's righteousness in Him (2 Cor. 5:2121For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him. (2 Corinthians 5:21)).
Undoubtedly, when a soul repents and believes the gospel, there is a marked moral change. Faith knows God and Him Whom He sent as never before, and by the Holy Spirit cries, Abba Father; while repentance means a real self-judgment in the sight of God. But reconciliation goes farther, and is the establishing of a new, near, and known relationship of favor with God according to the purposes of His grace and through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus. Now that Christ is come and the will of God done, all that raised a barrier and provoked flesh is gone by our death with Christ; and we are His Who is risen, that we may bear fruit unto God, and serve in newness of spirit, not in oldness of letter.
When Christ appears and the revelation of the sons of God takes place, the creation (which, as the apostle tells us, is now groaning together and travailing in pain together) shall be delivered. It is now in the bondage of corruption as it shared the consequences of Adam's fall, its head. But the Second man, as He now delivers those who believe in Him, will by-and-by deliver creation also into the liberty of the glory we shall then have. Before He comes in power and glory, it is ours, to enjoy already, as creation cannot, the liberty of grace. In that day God will reconcile to Himself through Christ all things (having made peace by the blood of His cross), whether the things on earth or the things in the heavens. But it is all-important to know that, whatever we may once have been in the sad and wicked past, God has now reconciled us in the body of Christ's flesh through death (Col. 1:21, 2221And you, that were sometime alienated and enemies in your mind by wicked works, yet now hath he reconciled 22In the body of his flesh through death, to present you holy and unblameable and unreproveable in his sight: (Colossians 1:21‑22)). Impossible to do more for our souls now than He has already done in Christ, always supposing that we believe in Him and continue in the faith grounded and settled.
Do you believe now, dear reader? Is it your peaceful, settled, assurance from day to day, that you are thus “reconciled to God”? It could be the portion of none without the perfect and accepted work of Christ; whereby, as Heb. 10:1010By the which will we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all. (Hebrews 10:10) tells us, we have been sanctified once for all. Nay more, by that one offering He has perfected forever (i.e. without a break) the sanctified (ver. 14). It is God Who reconciled us to Himself by Jesus Christ (2 Cor. 5:1818And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation; (2 Corinthians 5:18)). It is therefore as complete as is due to His person and His work. Believing that God is thus good to you now in His Son has a powerful effect on the inner man, its affections and its mind, as well as the outer ways and words, the whole life. But reconciliation is God's work in setting us who believe in our right relationship to Him, sins forgiven, ourselves justified and standing in His favor as His beloved children. Without Christ's death for us it was impossible for sinful man to be thus blessed. But if by grace I believe on Him, all is mine, as God's word declares. If then your soul rests on Him, on God's testimony to Him and His work, be assured that you are reconciled to God. What God reveals, we receive without doubt in Christ's name.