Thus it is clear that certain ideas run through the passages where the reconciliation words are used in the New Testament. Common to all are the thoughts that it is the sin of man which represents the barrier to communion with God, and that this must be dealt with if reconciliation is to take place. It is this which gives point to the idea that God can be said to be reconciled to man, for it is manifestly impossible for God to regard man in quite the same way before the barrier is removed as He does after that takes place. At the same time the reconciliation is always God's work, and in several ways we have the truth stressed that it is the love of God that is the dominant factor in bringing reconciliation about.
(Morris, Leon. The Apostolic Preaching of the Cross. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1965. Print. 236)