Search
  • Pastor Olson

You have a message of peace to share with the world

It is amazing to me how zealous our congregation was in the early years to share that message of joy with this community. One day a week, every week, members gathered together to canvass new areas of this community, sharing with everyone they could the message that meant so much to each of them. Do you still have that joy? Are you still an ambassador of Christ? If so, then we have a ministry to share! How can we be ambassadors to this community in today’s world?



“Grace be unto you and peace from God our Father and from our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Amen.”


2 Corinthians 5:17-20a


17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come! 18 All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: 19 that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting men’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation. 20 We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us.


Dear Friends,


Intense fighting developed on February 22, 1946 as troops encountered 30 Japanese soldiers. Eight Allied troops were killed, including 2 Filipinos. The Filipino and Americans sent for an additional 20,000 rounds of small arm ammunition, but it wasn’t needed. In early April, 41 members of the Japanese garrison on Lubang island came out of the jungle, unaware that the war had ended. They had been needlessly at war for over a year after peace had been declared.


God declared peace between himself and a sinful world when he raised Jesus from the dead. For nearly 40 years our mission as a congregation has been to tell everyone that the war has ended so that people might really start living again. It seems that those who began this mission must have understood that and so named this church “prince of peace.” The word “prince” has as its root meaning the idea of “first.” Jesus is the Prince of Peace. The Bible calls him that long before he was born of the virgin Mary. He is the first, the beginning, the starting place of peace. If you understand that about your Savior, then you must understand what St. Paul means in these verses for our consideration today. You have a message of peace to share with the world … starting right here in Martinez. It is the same message you have been sharing for almost 40 years now:


YOU ARE AMBASSADORS OF CHRIST

1. with a message to enjoy

2. with a ministry to share


An ambassador is a representative of another. You represent Christ in this community. That’s not going to mean much to you unless you understand what Christ has done for you. Many still don’t understand that God has made peace with sinful man. Many still live as enemies of the cross of Christ. They continue to wage war on everything God has said and done. They don’t know that God established peace with the world on that Good Friday afternoon and announced it to the world on Easter Sunday by raising Jesus from

the dead and declaring to the world: “Peace be with you!”


God had given us life for a singular purpose. He gave us life so that we might be selfless. He gave us life so that we might become great by becoming smaller than everyone around us. He gave us life so that we might appreciate all that God has done and promised to do from the moment time began. He gave us a message to enjoy, a message of peace.


By nature our eyes are closed to all of this. We were born with a chip on our shoulder that claimed God was holding out on us – we deserve better than what we have. Somehow, we figured that we had to elevate ourselves at the expense of others. We still daily face the temptation to live selfish, self-serving lives and completely miss the whole purpose of life. We were born hating God’s rules and quickly began making our own rules. We’ve driven God far away and reshaped a god who is supported by the strings that we use to hold him up. We cause our god to pat us on our backs and to applaud our useless, self serving lives. It isn’t surprising really that our world is falling apart because everyone else is just like you. The world in which we live is at war with the God of the Bible even though God has declared peace with us for Jesus’ sake!


Why are we so foolish! God has smiled on us and called us friends! God has washed our sins away and called us family. God has conquered death and given us everlasting life. Don’t throw that away to chase after dreams that have no lasting value! Enjoy the message of peace!


St. Paul wrote, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!” Because of Christ you have a new life! You are free to live life to the full. Maybe you’ve heard the story of a strong young man who was put on the auction block to be sold as a slave. Bids were coming in, but one bid stopped all bidding. He bid ten times the value of the man. The rich man paid for the slave and went up to his new slave and said, “I bought your freedom. You may go anywhere you’d like and do anything you’d like.” The young man was stunned. He threw his arms around the master and wept for a long time. Finally, composing himself, he said, “Thank you sir, but I want to serve you all the days of my life.”


In a similar way God has set you free from slavery to sin and has given you a new life. If you understand what God has done for you, you know how you want to live your life. Redeemed by the blood of Christ, you want to please God with your life. He has given you a message to enjoy. The message has compelled you to be an ambassador of Christ.

It is amazing to me how zealous our congregation was in the early years to share that message of joy with this community. One day a week, every week, members gathered together to canvass new areas of this community, sharing with everyone they could the message that meant so much to each of them. Do you still have that joy? Are you still an ambassador of Christ? If so, then we have a ministry to share! How can we be ambassadors to this community in today’s world?


St. Paul wrote, “All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation.” Remember that the word “reconciliation” means “peace.” God has made peace with us through Christ and now invites us to participate in “the ministry of reconciliation.”


What is this ministry of reconciliation? St. Paul explains: “that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting men’s sins against them.” 40 years ago, this small group of Christians seemed to get it. They understood that God had made peace with the world for Jesus’ sake washing the sins of all people away. Their ministry, our ministry, is to share that message of peace with God for Jesus’ sake with everyone in the world!


You don’t have to travel to Tibet to be an ambassador of Christ. You are doing that every day right where you live. You are representing Christ to everyone you have contact with throughout the week. Everybody who knows you ought to know that you are that guy who wants them to know that the war against God is over. Peace has been established by Jesus Christ when he took our place on the cross and rose again on Easter morning!

God “has committed to us the message of reconciliation!” “US” means everyone here today! No longer can we say that representing Christ in the world is someone else’s job – it is your job and it is my job! St. Paul said, “We are therefore, Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us.”


God is making his appeal to the world through you. He wants the world to stop fighting against him because he has declared the war over and the victory won for Jesus’ sake. I guess we could do nothing and let others tell the world the good news if we are too lazy, too busy, or just plain ungrateful for all that God has done for us. But God has more confidence in us than that. God is making his appeal to the world through you! You are Christ’s ambassadors! What an honor!


An ambassador represents a whole nation to a foreign people. You represent Prince of Peace Lutheran church wherever you go and whatever you do. Let people know what Christ has done. He has borne the guilt of our sins and risen from the dead to declare peace between God and man. There is no reason why there should be any enemies of God out there. Jesus has made peace. That is a message for you to enjoy personally. That is a ministry for you to share relentlessly. May it be our passion until we see our Savior on our own resurrection day! When others ask you who you are, may each of us know that we are ambassadors of Christ! What a message! What a ministry!


Amen.

18 views
ABOUT US

Pastor:  Jonathan Neumann

706-860-1600

Email: pastorjonathanneumann@gmail.com

Preschool Director: Jeanne Thomas

706-860-1655

Email: princeofpeacepreschoolga@gmail.com

ADDRESS

© 2020 by PRINCE OF PEACE