This is why Jesus came: Jesus is our Minister of Reconciliation. We are not held accountable for our sin because Jesus paid the price. In response to this, we, who have been reconciled, are responsible for sharing the means of reconciliation with those who have not yet accepted Christ as their Savior. This is the message of the Church.
Many Christians feel that it is their job to make people aware of their sin and to tell them of the judgment of God upon evil. They feel that they must scare people to Christ—make them believe they are going to hell, so that when they see the flames burning beneath them, when they feel the singeing of their hair, then they will repent of their evil.
But they have not carefully considered verses like this. The approach of the apostles and of Jesus was not one founded upon judgment, but upon reconciliation. Certainly, we may have to warn people of coming judgment if they refuse this message of reconciliation, but that’s not the place to start. Instead, we should start by reminding people that God has said, “We don’t need to talk about judgment, for I’ve taken care of that.”
As we go to people, we should do so assuming that they are hurting from sin, just as we were. Then, we need to talk about a God who understands that, who wants to relieve them from that hurt and has done something about it. Finally, we need to tell people that God is not interested in anyone going to Hell. He has opened His arms and invited us to come to Him, through Jesus Christ, and be restored.
This is the message of Advent.