Jesus came and preached peace to you who were far away and peace to those who were near. [Ephesians 2:17 NIV]
Jesus mends what we have broken. Sin has always been the divisive tool in relationships and scars the image of God within us. Early in the 1800’s of our country’s history there is the famous Hatfield’s and McCoy’s feud that was not settled till recently. Feuds have been going on since the beginning of human history. Since the Rebellion of man to God’s rule in His Garden, there has been and continues to be a bitter, continuous hostility between families lasting generations. And it usually starts with a bitter quarrel or contentious argument. And shamefully Church history is filled with feuding.
Sin has always been the divisive tool in relationships. Here is the good news. Jesus Christ tore down the divider between men and between God and men. The division that sin has erected has been obliterated by Jesus Christ. He has broken the divide between us and God and He has shattered the walls that separate men from one another. We have been brought near to God and as such we have also been brought near to one another. Jesus mends the relationships we have broken.
Because of the reconciling work of Jesus Christ we who claim Jesus as our Savior must pursue relationships with one another and with the Lord. There is no such thing as a Lone Ranger Christian in God mind. To be a lone ranger Christian is to live in rebellion instead of redemption. You cannot live the Christian life as outlined in the New Testament apart from living in a vital relationship with other believers in a local body. We must pursue relationships with one another, no matter how messy they can be.
Mark Dever [senior pastor of the Capitol Hill Baptist Church in Washington, D.C. since 1994] commented: “We demonstrate to the world that we have been changed not primarily because we memorize Bible verses, pray before meals, tithe a portion of our income, and listen to Christian radio stations, but because we increasingly show a willingness to put up with, to forgive, and even to love a bunch of fellow sinners.”