2 Corinthians 5:19 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

2 Corinthians 5:19, NIV: "that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting people's sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation."

2 Corinthians 5:19, ESV: "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."

2 Corinthians 5:19, KJV: "To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation."

2 Corinthians 5:19, NASB: "namely, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and He has committed to us the word of reconciliation."

2 Corinthians 5:19, NLT: "For God was in Christ, reconciling the world to himself, no longer counting people's sins against them. And he gave us this wonderful message of reconciliation."

2 Corinthians 5:19, CSB: "That is, in Christ, God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and he has committed the message of reconciliation to us."

What does 2 Corinthians 5:19 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

In describing and defending his ministry to the Corinthians, Paul is describing God's new work in the world. The old has gone, Paul has written. The new has come (2 Corinthians 5:17). That "new" is Christ. More specifically, all who trust in Christ's death in their place, for their sin, will be given a gift of God's grace: credit for Jesus' righteous life. Being "in Christ" in this way will cause the old separation between themselves and God to be removed. They will be reconciled to Him.

Paul wrote in the previous verse that God reconciled Paul and his co-workers to Himself in Christ in this way and then immediately gave them the ministry of telling others about it. For Paul, this happened when Christ called his name while he was on the road to Damascus (Acts 9).

What is the "message of reconciliation" that Paul and his co-workers had been entrusted with by God? Put most simply, it is this: God is not counting the sins of those who are "in Christ" against them. Those sins once stood between every person and God as an obstacle that could not be moved (Romans 3:23). Christ removed the obstacle by paying the price for each believer's sin with His death. It is unnecessary for us to suffer death for our own sin, or to be permanently separated from God (Romans 6:23). Now all who trust in Christ can be reconciled to God. Paul understood his mission in life to be delivering this message to everyone he could.