I recently spent a weekend away with a group of friends, some of whom I’ve known deeply for decades and some of whom I knew less intimately at the time. I read today’s verses while I traveled, in anticipation of this study, and I was struck by how often the topic of reconciliation occurred in the stories we shared. 

We have all experienced disagreements in our friendships, families, or professional relationships. Sometimes we resolve our differences and find a new level of understanding and growth. Sometimes our pride stands in the way. Sometimes we reach a compromise; sometimes just a ceasefire. Sometimes conflict leaves us bitter and resentful.

The truth of it is that we are messy, messed-up people. We bring all of our biases and past battle scars into every relationship, and that’s a recipe for discord. We are also inherently sinful people, and at our best, we still make mistakes. Relationships—and reconciliations—are complicated and hard. 

Before Jesus, our relationship with God was broken. We were strangers, considered enemies of God (Romans 5:10). Isaiah 59:2 says, “But your sinful acts have alienated you from your God; your sins have caused him to reject you and not listen to your prayers.” If I think of this from a worldly view, this sounds like a relationship beyond repair. From an eternal view, this is eternal damnation. 

But God. He mercifully sacrificed His Son, Jesus, on the cross to reconcile us to Himself. Jesus made “atonement for the sins of the people” (Hebrews 2:17). 2 Corinthians 5:17–18 explains, “So then, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; what is old has passed away—look, what is new has come! And all these things are from God who reconciled us to himself through Christ, and who has given us the ministry of reconciliation.” When we accept the gift of salvation through Jesus, we are reconciled to God (Romans 5:10). We can make peace with God through the blood of the cross (Colossians 1:20). 

I love how it’s said in 2 Corinthians 5:21, “God made the one who did not know sin to be sin for us, so that in him we would become the righteousness of God.” We can’t earn this. We don’t deserve this.

After we accept His gift of salvation, it’s also our responsibility to tell others how they can reconcile with God. The scary description of our lives “before Jesus” is also the harsh reality of life “without Jesus.” Friends, share the Good News. Let’s make heaven crowded. 

Week 3 Challenge:

Reflect on the events in Jacob’s life you have read so far. Would God have delivered Jacob without Jacob’s shrewd behavior? Did Jacob miss out on the blessing of God through self-reliance and deception? How did Jacob’s children display the same tendencies of self-reliance and deception?

Week 3 Reading Plan

Week 3 Memory Verse

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Sara Lindsey

Sara Lindsey

Sara Lindsay is a West Texas girl. She adores her husband of 16+ years and delights in the daily chaos of raising and discipling their four young children. She is a physician, specializing in MRI imaging. Sara is an encouraging friend, intentional at developing authentic relationships. She has a heart for supporting women and families, and she is passionate about Bible translation.

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