Reflection on the Gospel of John 18:33-37; Christ the King Sunday  November 21, 2021

Gospel of John 18:33-37

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.” (38 Pilate asked him, ‘What is truth?’)

Let us Pray: Lord, we pray for your Kingdom to come here now, bringing a kingdom of justice, righteousness, hope, love, peace, mercy and grace for all. Lord, we ask that you rule in our hearts, lead in this world and govern over your kingdom. This we ask in the Name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit  Amen

“I am the Alpha and the Omega,” says the Lord God, who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty. (Revelation 1:8).

This Sunday honors Jesus Christ as King, but soon the religious leaders will shout, “We have no king but the emperor!”

In these times of fake news and conspiracies, it is so refreshing to hear Jesus solemnly proclaim that he was born and came into the world to testify to the truth. Jesus is the King of truth and everyone who is of the truth hears His voice. One of truth, justice, compassion and love. The defender of the poor. The King who prays. He did not come as a king in robes of royalty or with a fine palace and a royal court. Instead, Jesus came as the King of Truth in simplicity and with a band of everyday folks called apostles. He never wanted to be King. But he didn’t want a lot that happened to him. He took it on out of love. A lot of people were confused about Jesus. They had heard about his being a king, supposedly, but he didn’t dress like a king, he didn’t talk like a king, he certainly didn’t act like a king. So perhaps he wasn’t a king, not really. If not a king, then what? Maybe we can dismiss him as a good teacher. Then we can pick and choose the nice bits he said and agree with them but ignore the harder stuff. If he’s not a king, do we have to obey when we don’t fancy it. We can keep our own little kingdoms. That certainly would make things easier. But for many the mention of Him being king were not ready to move aside. The religious folk certainly had a kingdom to protect. They had been maintaining the faith of the children of Abraham for centuries and they were not about to let some jumped-up messiah carpenter from the ill-educated north start rocking the boat. The uncomfortable truth is that Jesus is king, whether we like it or not. If we welcome him with rejoicing or if we fight to keep the power, we think is ours, he is king. If we gladly bow in worship or if we turn our backs and ignore the commands we don’t like, he is king. If we freely offer all our gifts and possessions back to the one who gave them or if we aggressively guard them as a dog his food bowl, He Is King. King and servant. Christ the King Sunday is a good ending of one church year to begin another. We’ll see more of what it’s all like in the weeks of December. The time of anticipation of His coming.  Meantime we want to live in this reign of God and pray and live – your kingdom come.

Let us Pray: Holy Father, we praise and adore you for your Son, Christ Jesus, our Beautiful Savior, the King of Creation. We thank you for his holy life, his innocent suffering and death in our place, and his glorious resurrection that bestows life, forgiveness, health, and salvation on us. Though we are your poor unworthy servants, you have made us the sisters and brothers of your beloved Son and heirs of your Kingdom. Blessing and honor, praise and adoration be yours, Holy Father, for the sake of your Son, in the power of your Spirit. Amen

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