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From the Introduction of Reconciling Under the Cross; Resolving Conflict and Restoring Relationship using the Bible by Ted Kober


Reconciling under the Cross is written for anyone who desires to reconcile with someone in a biblically faithful manner. Chapters 1 and 2 are especially written for application in family conflicts (marriage, parent/child, sibling, extended family), work-related disputes (employer/employee, co-workers, customers), disagreements between friends and neighbors or even strangers, and discord in organizations (church, educational institutions, ministries, businesses, etc.). Use the application questions at the end of each chapter to guide you in applying God’s Word as you respond to your conflict.


Christians are called not just to resolve conflict but to reconcile. Jesus says, “So if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there before the altar and go. First be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift” (Matthew 5:23–24). The apostle Paul instructs, “If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all” (Romans 12:18).


This book is also written to equip you who desire to assist others in peacemaking. Sometimes people need help in reconciliation. Chapters 3–16 cover the four roles of a Christian reconciler:


  • Teaching biblical reconciliation
  • Coaching one person at a time to apply biblical reconciliation to a specific conflict
  • Mediating between two or more parties to apply biblical reconciliation to a specific conflict
  • Adjudicating a dispute between parties and applying Scripture, as well as other rules or laws

You’ll find the four parts of this book organized around these four roles.


The book also includes three case studies in the appendixes. These can be used for your own personal study, or they can be used by an instructor assigning homework to students studying reconciliation. Appendix A includes a form for confession and reconciliation called “Proclaiming God’s Forgiveness.”


I use a couple of terms interchangeably. I use conciliator or reconciler throughout this book. Both terms refer to a Christian who assists others to reconcile and resolve conflict. I also use adjudicator or arbitrator (and its other variations). Both terms refer to a conciliator who is appointed to serve as a private judge for parties.


For years, the movement of Christian conciliation has developed and matured with the expertise of a number of gifted individuals, including those who trained and mentored me and worked beside me. Conciliators like Ken Sande, Gary Friesen, Bruce Zagel, Ed Keinath, Dick Thompson, Dwight Schettler, and many more. Be sure to review the resources section at the end of the book. Many of these resources are written by friends and colleagues, and they will enhance your understanding of Christian conciliation.


As a founder of the conciliation ministry Ambassadors of Reconciliation, I have continued to practice and learn about the ministry of reconciliation. This book reflects what I have learned from others as well as from my personal experience over the last three decades.


Reconciling Under the Cross

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