King of Kings and Lord of Lords

King of Kings and Lord of Lords

Friends, I invite you to share your comments on these Afterthoughts at the bottom of this web page. I would love hear what you think! brad+

This past Sunday, we celebrated the end of the liturgical year.

Christ the King Sunday.

It seems fitting that the end of the year be about the Lordship of Christ.

It starts with the prophecy of His coming. Advent

Then to His birth. Christmas

His being revealed to the world. Epiphany

His obedient journey to the cross to be The Sacrifice. Lent

His death, resurrection, and ascension. Easter

His promised gift of the Advocate; the Holy Spirit. Pentecost

But it ends with Christ as the King

Or as we are reminded of through the prophecy during Christmas,

“For a child has been born for us,
a son given to us; 

authority rests upon his shoulders;
and he is named 

Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.”

                                            Isaiah 9:6

He is King.

And, like I mentioned on Sunday,

We can choose who or what we serve,

Just not if we will serve.

Bob Dylan famously wrote a song called Gotta Serve Somebody.

I am advocating for Christ as the One we should serve.

As Paul wrote to the Ephesians from the second reading on Sunday,

“God put this power to work in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly places, far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and above every name that is named, not only in this age but also in the age to come. And he has put all things under his feet and has made him the head over all things for the church, which is his body, the fullness of him who fills all in all.”

At the beginning of my sermon,

I noted how in the Gospel reading from Sunday,

Jesus speaks about separating the sheep and the goats.

To some, this can seem troubling.

Because it speaks of judgement.

Eternal judgment.

But it actually speaks about the Judge.

And the followers of the Judge.

Jesus likens Himself to a Shepherd who is gathering His own.

The sheep (His Church).

Jesus calls His sheep blessed

and to enter into what has been prepared for them by the Father.

The reason for this blessing?

The blessed ones receive the blessing because of who they are.

They have lovingly lived out the example of Jesus (their King)

and the command of the Shepherd (think Maundy Thursday).

“For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you gave me clothing, I was sick and you took care of me, I was in prison and you visited me.”

They have, “Loved one another as He has loved.”

Jesus.

The healer.

The provider of wine at a wedding.

The provider of bread and fish.

The One who called Lazarus from the grave.

The One who spoke to outcasts and outsiders.

And cared for the least of these.

It is good to notice that their “blessedness” is because of who they are

and not from what they do.

Why do I say that?

What is their response to Jesus inviting them into this blessedness?

“Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when was it that we saw you hungry and gave you food, or thirsty and gave you something to drink? And when was it that we saw you a stranger and welcomed you, or naked and gave you clothing? And when was it that we saw you sick or in prison and visited you?’”

Their care for others was a response to the care of Christ shown to them.

It showed that they viewed Him as Lord.

It showed they understood the purpose of their redemption.

It showed that a changed life is born out of a changed heart.

This is the life of the faithful,

Of those who have been called according to His purpose.

Us.

You and me.

The Church.

In community.

Together.

Let it be so.

brad+

2 Comments

  1. Summer

    “Their care for others was a response to the care of Christ shown to them.”

    This reminds me that all that we do comes from all that we have received from Jesus. Our response of grace, mercy, compassion, forgiveness…love all come from Jesus’ pouring out of grace, mercy, compassion, forgiveness, love and care onto and into us.

    Thanks be to God.

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