Solemnity of Christ the King, November 24
With Christ Jesus As My Eternal King and Lord and Savior, Do I Truly Serve His Kingdom by the Way I Live My Life, by the Way I Profess My Faith?
In today’s Second Reading, we read in Saint Paul’s Letter to the Colossians, “He delivered us from the power of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.”
On this Thirty-fourth and last Sunday in Ordinary Time, we celebrate the Solemnity of Christ the Lord, King of the Universe, a day in which we honor Jesus Christ as universal “King of kings and Lord of lords”, holding dominion over all creation.
And we are reminded in today’s Gospel that His Kingdom is not of this world, for it is a place where God’s Love and Mercy reigns supreme, especially when we listen to the conversation which takes place on Calvary between Christ and the one criminal who was repentant, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.” And, our Lord, in complete agony, replied to him, “Amen, I say to you, today you will be with me in Paradise.”
Even hours earlier, when Jesus stood before Pilate, our Lord responded to Pilate’s inquiries that His attendants would fight to prevent Him from being handed over if His Kingdom were of this world.
In all that our Lord taught us throughout the course of His three-year ministry concerning the life which awaits each of us who leave this world in His friendship, God’s Kingdom is one in which Jesus’ Sovereignty is supreme, for His is a Kingdom of truth and life, a Kingdom of holiness and grace, a Kingdom of true justice, love and peace.
And by virtue of our Baptism into the Life, Death and Resurrection of Jesus Christ, His is the Kingdom of which you and I become co-heirs and fellow citizens with all the saints – all those who have gone before us marked with the sign of faith and have left this life in the state of grace.
For those who have been following these daily meditations since they started over ten years ago, we have reflected numerous times on God’s unfathomable Love and Mercy which He has for His children. We have reflected on God’s Word with regards to faith, hope, and our dependence upon our Creator and Savior and the intimate relationship we should be living with Him.
And our Scriptures, both today and throughout the year, bring us that awesome awareness that this God whom we call our own, this God who is our Good Shepherd and who laid down His life in the Person of His Divine Son for His sheep, this God who owes us nothing but offers us everything! – is a God who, as the Book of Revelation tells us, is the “King of kings and Lord of lords.” For, our Lord declares to us in no uncertain terms – “‘I Am the Alpha and the Omega,’ says the Lord God, ‘the one who is and who was and who is to come, the almighty.’”
And Paul reminds us in our Second Reading today, Jesus Christ truly is “…the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. For in him were created all things in heaven and on earth, the visible and the invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers; all things were created through him and for him. He is before all things, and in him all things hold together.”
Just as Paul was catechizing the early Christians as to the Divinity of Jesus Christ and His Kingship, so, too, he catechizes each one of us today. And our need for catechesis is no less now than it was some two thousand years ago.
As we view the world today from a Christian perspective and without being judgmental, but rather observing everything objectively and without prejudice, we find, in untold societies throughout the world, cultural and ethnic hatreds, violence, religious intolerance, starvation and disease for millions of people!
We find governments which approve and promote a culture of death and immoral lifestyles – all contrary to the will of God – human behavior which runs counter to all that God’s Kingdom represents! For we live in a world and a culture today which prefers to separate itself from the will of God, especially when we witness societies and governments embracing a culture of death in which abortion is legalized and euthanasia becomes more and more acceptable in many areas of the world.
We live in a world and a culture today which prefers to re-write the definition of marriage, no longer recognizing the special gift which God gave to His creation, no longer recognizing the unique complementarity which exists between a man and a woman – for the purpose of fulfilling God’s plan of a loving relationship which generates new life.
We live in a world and a culture today which seems to thrive on the concept of selfish and ego-centric thinking, a way of life in which there is no longer an absolute Truth, and in which society makes new gods and new truths in promoting its own self-interests.
And we live in a world in which terrorism and violent disorder are perpetrated in the distorted belief that hatred, ethnic and religious cleansing is God’s will. In other words, these violent acts are committed in the name of a God whom they do not understand – all resulting from an absolute perversion of Divine Truth orchestrated by Satan, himself!
In the midst of all that is occurring around the world today, you and I are called to live out our life of faith as true Christians. This is where you and I are to become faithful witnesses in what we profess to believe. We are each called to love God and to love each other; and, in so doing, we are each called to embrace His Commandments and the Beatitudes which our Lord taught us.
We are each called to embrace the teaching authority of our Church, and to respect and comply with the various disciplines and precepts of our faith, which are designed for our own spiritual benefit and for the greater glory of Almighty God, remembering always the petition which we place at the Throne of our Heavenly Father each and every time we pray the Lord’s Prayer given to us by Jesus, Himself – “Thy Kingdom come, Thy Will be done, on Earth as it is in Heaven.”
You and I know how this story will one day end. God’s Love for His children will not be compromised – for, in a time known only to our Eternal Father in Heaven, the “King of kings” will come in all His Glory and will be victorious over all His enemies.
And the Scriptures present us with the choice between two kingdoms – the Kingdom of Light and the kingdom of darkness. The choice is ultimately ours to make! The question which each person must ask him or herself is, “Which kingdom do I serve by the way I live my life? Do I live by God’s Truth, or do I live my own truth?”
To accept Christ Jesus as our Lord and King is to enter into a Kingdom that will last forever – where righteousness, peace, truth, love and true joy shall always dwell. In the end, the decision IS truly our own! It always has been, for that is the gift of free will which God has given to each and every one of us.
In our daily lives, may we always recognize that Jesus Christ is not only our Lord and Savior, our Most Intimate Friend and Brother, but that He is also our God and our King, and that there should be no other god in the life we live.
And may He always be the Lord and Master of your heart and mine, so that we may find ourselves, one day, standing at the right hand of the “King of kings” in all His Glory – giving honor and praise to His Father and ours in God’s Heavenly Kingdom, for that is where our citizenship truly lies!
May God bless you, God love you, and may God always keep you. †
Please Comment, Like and Share, and Suggest to your Facebook friends – to spread the message of God’s Merciful Love.
Por favor Comente, Le Gusta y Comparta, y Sugiera a tus amigos en Facebook – en difundir el mensaje del Misericordioso Amor de Dios.
Scripture for the Day
- “He delivered us from the power of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins. [Christ Jesus] is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. For in him were created all things in heaven and on earth, the visible and the invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers; all things were created through him and for him. He is before all things, and in him all things hold together.” (Colossians 1:13-17)
- Jesus answered, ‘My kingship does not belong to this world; if my kingship did belong to this world, my attendants would be fighting to keep me from being handed over to the Jews. But as it is, my kingdom is not here.’ So Pilate said to him, ‘Then 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.’” (John 18:36-37)
- “Then he said, ‘Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.’ [Jesus] replied to him, ‘Amen, I say to you, today you will be with me in Paradise.’” (Luke 23:42-43)
- “Behold, he is coming amid the clouds, and every eye will see him, even those who pierced him. All the peoples of the earth will lament him.” (Revelation 1:7ab)
- “‘I Am the Alpha and the Omega’, says the Lord God, ‘the one who is and who was and who is to come, the almighty.’” (Revelation 1:8)
- “He wore a cloak that had been dipped in blood, and his name was called the Word of God. The armies of heaven followed him, mounted on white horses and wearing clean white linen. Out of his mouth came a sharp sword to strike the nations. He will rule them with an iron rod, and he himself will tread out in the wine press the wine of the fury and wrath of God the almighty. He has a name written on his cloak and on his thigh, ‘King of kings and Lord of lords.’” (Revelation 19:13-16)
- “…Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the firstborn of the dead and ruler of the kings of the earth. To him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by his blood, who has made us into a kingdom, priests for his God and Father, to him be glory and power forever [and ever]. Amen.” (Revelation 1:5-6)
Prayer for the Day
“O Christ Jesus, Eternal Lord and Savior,
I acknowledge You as King of kings and Lord of lords.
All that has been created has been made for You.
Exercise over me all Your rights.
“I renew my baptismal promises,
renouncing Satan and all his empty promises and evil designs.
I promise to live a good Christian life
and to do all in my power to procure
the triumph of the rights of God and Your Church.
“Divine Heart of Jesus, I offer to You my poor actions
in order to obtain that all hearts
may acknowledge Your Sacred Royalty,
and that thus the Reign of Your peace
may be established throughout the universe. Amen.”Anonymous