“Reconcile” is an accounting term. It means to “balance out,” and to “make even.” A lot like when you balance your checkbook, you are “reconciling” your check register with the actual amount in your account using whatever receipts that you may have that haven’t cleared your account yet, and writing in the ones that your bank shows that you forgot to write in. Did you know that God is in the business of reconciling?
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come. All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation; that is, in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation. Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us. We implore you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God. (2 Corinthians 5:17-20 ESV)
What Needed to be Reconciled?
Why didn’t we reconcile ourselves to God? Could we? Nope! By reconciling us to Himself, God has done all of the work that needed to be done by providing Christ as a sacrifice for our mistakes. Nothing else needs to be done—God “saved” us from the payment of wrath that was stored up for us (that we deserve) as a result of the sins and mistakes that we’ve made.
For the wages (payment) of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Rom 6:23 KJV)
…if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved. For the Scripture says, “Everyone who believes in him will not be put to shame.” For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of all, bestowing his riches on all who call on him. For “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord (Jesus) will be saved. (Romans 10:9-10 ESV)
God Doesn’t Send Anyone to Hell. They Send Themselves There
So, if God has already done everything that needed to be done reconcile us to Himself, why will people still go to hell?
There is only one way to answer this question: people will spend an eternal (unending) torment in the lake of fire (Rev 20:15) because they did not put their trust in Christ alone while they were alive on the earth. Read the passage below.
God loved the world this way: He gave his only Son so that everyone who believes in him will not die but will have eternal life. God sent his Son into the world, not to condemn the world, but to save the world. Those who believe in Him won’t be condemned. But those who don’t believe are already condemned because they don’t believe in God’s only Son. This is why people are condemned: The light came into the world. Yet, people loved the dark rather than the light because their actions were evil. People who do what is wrong hate the light and don’t come to the light. They don’t want their actions to be exposed. But people who do what is true come to the light so that the things they do for God may be clearly seen. (John 3:16-21 ESV)
Those who do not believe [put their trust] in Christ are condemned. It’s not because they did wrong that they are going to hell. People do wrong BECAUSE they never came to the light (Jesus). The source of their problem is not their actions; their actions are the result of their beliefs, and in this case, their beliefs will cause them to spend eternity in a devil’s hell.
Salvation is a FREE GIFT!
You can’t earn it by acting good enough so quit trying. If man could have acted good enough to obtain right standing with God, then God would not have sent Jesus. God’s Word says:
For when we were still without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. For scarcely for a righteous man will one die; yet perhaps for a good man someone would even dare to die. But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. (Romans 5:6-8)
When we deserved it the very least, God rescued us through Christ. To receive God’s free gift of eternal salvation, simply put your faith in Christ alone (that means no one else other than Him) by believing in your heart that God raised Christ from the dead and confess Him to be the Lord of your life (Romans 10:9-10).
In the next post, I’ll discuss why it is important for you to believe that God raised Christ from the dead. Read The Importance of the Resurrection.