Tuesday, 29 March 2011

What Do You Mean I'm an Ambassador?

Have you ever had the experience of reading a passage in the Bible that you have read numerous times and all of a sudden it took on new meaning?

I had just such an experience when I read 2 Corinthians 5:20 that says, “We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us.” As an ambassador I am representing someone else. I am to represent his/her position in a way that would convey what they would want to say in a way that they would want to say it.

These are the kinds of phrases in Scripture that tend to cause me great discomfort. Such phrases are just shy of giving us a command but the message is clear. I can’t pretend like I didn’t understand it. Perhaps if I could remember how to diagram sentences, the actual meaning, grammatically speaking, would be altered. Who am I kidding? First of all I could never diagram sentences and secondly there is nothing I could do to this sentence to change its implications. In every situation in which I find myself I am to represent God. I am to say what He would say, in a way He would say it. I am to act in a way that He would act, given the opportunity.

So hypothetically speaking if my wife did something that disappointed me I would show her grace. If she did something that hurt me, I would overlook it and turn the other cheek. If she acted in an unloving or disrespectful manner toward me I would act in a forgiving and loving way toward her. And if in some way she was to say or do something that would offend God, I would gently restore her. Am I missing something here?

Why does God do this? Surely there are things in the Bible that are less clear. Couldn’t He have been at least a little ambiguous? He could have said, “to some people you are to be Christ’s ambassadors.” This would have left it open to my discretion. I assume that this principle also applies to the moron who cuts me off on the highway; the clueless person with a basketful of groceries in the express checkout lane; and the salesclerk who is too busy texting her friends to wait on me.

I know Scripture says that we are but aliens in this world, if I’m able to put this principle into practice my wife will think she is married to one.

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