In my last post, we started digging into 2 Corinthians 5:20 and figuring out what it means to us. We started by breaking out the various components of the definition of an “ambassador,” applying each component to our own situations. You really need to read that last post [HERE] to get the full effect. Today, I want to cover the remaining points that I believe are most critical in this verse.
Just to make sure you remember our working definition of “ambassador,” I want to include it here for reference:
An ambassador is a dignitary whose full-time job is to live for a period (usually years) in a foreign land, intentionally building relationships with the people native to that land and purposefully representing to those people the desires of his king.
So what are the critical points here? What aspects are key to our success as ambassadors for Christ?
First, let’s talk about the fact that an ambassadorship is a full-time job. It is not one that is only done on the weekends or in the evenings. Ambassadors are always on call. They must always be ready to meet with anyone, not postponing any opportunity to advance their king’s desires.
If we are to be Christ’s ambassadors, then we must be the same way. Being an ambassador for Christ is also a full-time job. Whether in church on a Sunday or on the job site on Monday, we are to represent the desires of our King to those around us.
Part Time Not Available!
This job cannot be taken on a part-time basis. Sure, many of us have been taught that full-time ministry is the responsibility of our local church’s staff or missionaries in a foreign field. Unfortunately, this lie has been accepted by many – even by some in church leadership themselves!
The truth is that we are ALL full-time ministers. We’re all called to be full-time ambassadors for Christ, fulfilling the responsibilities of this job at all times. We are to be ambassadors at church. We are to be ambassadors at work. We are to be ambassadors in the community.
With Intention And Purpose
The second critical point is that the role of an ambassador is an intentional one. It is a job that is done on purpose – actively, not passively. The ambassador is not one that sits around in her office waiting to be called on. She is actively pursuing relationships and working to advance the cause of her homeland.
Unfortunately, many Christians see their job as ambassadors for Christ to be different from this. Many only mention their King on Sundays or in certain crowds when others initiate the conversation. Too many Christians feel they are to be private about their faith, allowing their King to do His own work…without their help.
Folks, this is crazy! As ambassadors, we are to be actively pursuing relationships in every context of our lives – at work, at home, in the community, etc. – for the purpose of pointing others to our King Jesus. We are to be intentionally representing His desires for them to everyone with whom we interact.
There Is Urgency!
Finally, the third critical point I see in this verse is urgency. Look at Paul’s words again:
Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, certain that God is appealing through us. We plead on Christ’s behalf, “Be reconciled to God.”
2 Corinthians 5:20
Notice a couple of words that convey this urgency to us. “God is appealing through us,” and “We plead on Christ’s behalf. These words, appealing and plead, should make us realize that time is of the essence. We are not guaranteed tomorrow and neither are those who are lost without Jesus.
No Time To Waste!
Since this is true, we do not have time to waste. We need to be acting and we need to be doing it now! There is no more time for us to concern ourselves with building our own fame and renown or pleasure and wealth for the purpose of our enjoyment. Instead, we are to be focused on that which God says is urgent and of primary importance.
This is not about leading a poor lifestyle, but about putting our first priority on fulfilling our jobs as ambassadors and leaving the rest to God. He promises to take care of the rest of it (Matthew 6:33)!
How often do you find yourself being passive in this job?
Based on these critical points, what action step do you need to take first?
Who can you encourage to take the same challenge?
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