Last Sunday Sabbath after Pentecost
The Feast of Christ the King
Last Sunday Sabbath after Pentecost
“Everyone who belongs to the truth listens to my voice.”
Almighty and everlasting God, whose will it is to restore all things in your well-beloved Son, the King of kings and Lord of lords: Mercifully grant that the peoples of the earth, divided and enslaved by sin, may be freed and brought together under his most gracious rule; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.
Daniel 7:9-10, 13-14
As I watched, thrones were set in place, and an Ancient One took his throne, his clothing was white as snow, and the hair of his head like pure wool; his throne was fiery flames, and its wheels were burning fire. A stream of fire issued and flowed out from his presence. A thousand thousands served him, and ten thousand times ten thousand stood attending him. The court sat in judgment, and the books were opened.
As I watched in the night visions,
I saw one like a human being coming with the clouds of heaven. And he came to the Ancient One and was presented before him. To him was given dominion and glory and kingship, that all peoples, nations, and languages should serve him. His dominion is an everlasting dominion that shall not pass away, and his kingship is one that shall never be destroyed.
Grace to you and peace from him who is and who was and who is to come, and from the seven spirits who are before his throne, and from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the firstborn of the dead, and the ruler of the kings of the earth.
To him who loves us and freed us from our sins by his blood, and made us to be a kingdom, priests serving his God and Father, to him be glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.
Look! He is coming with the clouds; every eye will see him, even those who pierced him; and on his account all the tribes of the earth will wail.
So it is to be. Amen.
“I am the Alpha and the Omega,” says the Lord God, who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.
Pilate entered the headquarters again, summoned Jesus, and asked him, “Are you the King of the Jews?” Jesus answered, “Do you ask this on your own, or did others tell you about me?” Pilate replied, “I am not a Jew, am I? Your own nation and the chief priests have handed you over to me. What have you done?” Jesus answered, “My kingdom is not from this world. If my kingdom were from this world, my followers would be fighting to keep me from being handed over to the Jews. But as it is, my kingdom is not from here.” Pilate asked him, “So you are a king?” Jesus answered, “You say that I am a king. For this I was born, and for this I came into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone who belongs to the truth listens to my voice.”
*The Collect well says “the peoples of the earth, divided and enslaved by sin”, something that is not very popular in “modern/progressive” lingo let alone thinking, is nonetheless absolutely true. You have but to look about the world and no know something is dreadfully wrong. Today’s feast is also very uncomfortable for many who believe that one way is just as good as another and then add to that the very language of the feast and they become frightfully ill at ease. We live in a world that has enthroned the ego above all and in this ego centric world capitalism and the worship of profit flourishes like a garden in the tropics. The false gospel of consumerism is heard throughout the world and it like a modern day Pilate ask Jesus “you are a king yea right!”
But Jesus is the King of Kings and we are his servants as well as his friends. Those who listen to truth listen to him and in so doing know the liberation of the soul. His Gospel is the Royal Decree that all are welcome into his Kingdom if they love and serve each other and thus serve him. He has wiped our sin away by his crucifixion which denies evil the final victory and called us to new Life. He is indeed Alpha and Omega our beginning and end and therefore our eternal presence in Him for no longer is time a taskmaster or a tyrant or a reaper.*
* Collect and Readings from the Episcopal Lectionary. Comments by the Rev Andrew Gentry, Vicar of the OnLine Parish of All Saints, a welcoming and inclusive community of the Ecumenical Catholic Church, ecchurch.net
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