“Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ,
as though God were entreating through us;
we beg you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God.
He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf,
that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.”
(2 Cor. 5:20-21, NASB)
Six baptisms today. Five twenty-somethings, one thirty-something. Four young men between 20 and 29. All professing new faith in Christ and a desire to follow Christ for the whole of their lives. And then, glory upon glory, a young woman, who attended worship for the first time last week, trusted Christ this week in the picnic that followed the baptism. What a great celebration of Pentecost!
What a privilege we have to be ambassadors for the king of Kings. This story captures both the privilege and power of an ambassadors position but also the source of our boldness. He is the King. We are his ambassadors. Begging-ambassadors with boldness.
The ambassador is clothed with all the authority of the king who sends him. On one occasion the king of Syria, Antiochus Epiphanes, invaded Egypt. Rome desired to stop him and sent an envoy called Popillius to tell him to abandon his projected invasion. Popillius caught up with Antiochus on the borders of Egypt and they talked of this and that for they had known each other in Rome. Popillius had not the vestige of an army with him, not even a guard. Finally Antiochus asked him why he had come. Quietly Popillius told him that he had come to tell him that Rome wished him to abandon the invasion and go home. “I will consider it,” said Antiochus. Popillius smiled a little grimly; he took his staff and drew a circle in the earth round Antiochus. “Consider it,” he said, “and come to your decision before you leave that circle.” Antiochus thought for a few seconds and then said: “Very well. I will go home.” Popillius himself had not the slightest force available—but behind him was all the power of Rome.
Jesus is our King. He has all authority in heaven and earth (Mt. 28:18). He commands us. We tell the world his message. We are his ambassadors. Let’s go with boldness and tell the greatest news ever announced. Let’s beg people, to be reconciled to God.
The Letter to the Hebrews. 2000, c1975 (W. Barclay, lecturer in the University of Glasgow, Ed.). The Daily Study Bible series, Rev. ed. Philadelphia: The Westminster Press.