READ : Colossians 1:15-20
For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, and through him God was pleased to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, by making peace through the blood of his cross. (vv. 19-20)
They hadn’t seen each other in years. Long ago the visits ceased, the phone lines went quiet, the email ended. To say they were estranged would be to put it mildly. Reconciliation seemed a pipe dream, a long shot, a fat chance.
In this eloquent hymn the apostle Paul tells us that God does for us what we cannot do for ourselves – bring about reconciliation. In Christ God reconciles all things to himself. All things. Redemption does not mean the annihilation of creation but its renewal. Salvation is not escape from the earth but its reclamation. Grace doesn’t destroy nature; it restores nature.
This peacemaking reconciliation is bloody. It costs the Messiah his life, on a tortuous cross. But only in such a way – by nonviolently taking on the taint of sin and absorbing the power of evil – could relationships be restored: with God, with other people, with our true best selves, and with the earth. Cosmic reconciliation . . . the restoration of creation . . . all things renewed. God be praised!
O God, cosmic Redeemer, we stand amazed at your all-embracing love. Enlarge our imagination to better envision the expanse of your reconciling grace.