The Rev. Samuel Adams explained some history as we celebrated Christ the King Sunday yesterday. It is a new feast day, established in the Roman Catholic Church by Pope Pius XI in 1925. Originally it was celebrated on the last Sunday of October, but was moved to the last Sunday of the liturgical year in 1970 when it was adopted by the Anglicans, Lutherans, and many other Protestants along with the Revised Common Lectionary.
We read from Ephesians 1 where we heard that “God has put all things under His (Christ’s) feet and has made him the head over all things…”
Sam admitted that when we look at the world around us, it is hard for us to recognize that Christ is King and in charge. But on this Sunday we are reminded that there is no cultural or world power that takes supremacy over Christ, not the stock market, the next political cycle, our pending retirement or the lake house. We should not be fooled by even good things, because in the end, they are never the ultimate; Christ is.
We need to view the world as something that we must participate in, but we don’t have to be held captive by its promises and demands. Because Christ is ruler of all, we are free, and we’ve been given Christ’s own life to share in.
St. Paul in his letter to the Ephesians clearly states that as the church, we must realize who we are. The sovereign Lordship of Jesus Christ is made explicit in us, even if it is denied by the rest of the world. For us this means:
1. We are freed from the world’s claims and hold on us
2. We don’t have to be slaves to productivity demands and consumerism
Sam told the story of a personal friend in Austin, TX who has started a “Green Home Improvement store”. They’ve been successful and are looking to expand, but Sam’s friend has decided to close the store on Black Friday so that his employees can spend additional time with their families. The business is successful enough and they don’t need to compete with other retailers to gain even more profit.
When we recognize Christ as the King in our lives, we see the world from a different perspective. Sam says it gives us freedom that sometimes makes our lives look crazy to others. But if Jesus is our Lord, it all makes sense.
I want my life to have only one Lord, Jesus Christ.
The photo is of Christ the Pantocrator Mosaic “Ruler of All/Sustainer of the World” at the Hagia Sophia, Istanbul.
Blessings, my friend,