Jeremiah 23:1-6. A prophecy of judgement on the unrighteous rulers of God’s people, and a promise of a new, righteous leader from David’s line.
Luke 1:68-79.: Zechariah’s song proclaiming God’s fulfilment of the promise to send a righteous ruler from David’s line, and celebrating his son, John, as God’s prophet.
Colossians 1:11-20. In Christ, who is supreme over all, and the visible image of God, we have been transferred from the realm of darkness into the realm of God’s reign.
Luke 23:33-43. While dying on the cross, Jesus assures the penitent thief that he will be with him in paradise that day.
Rev Tania writes:
As Year C closes this week, we are invited, once again, to celebrate the reign of Christ. The readings, though, make it impossible to get too triumphalist about it. The message is clear: this King is no power-monger, no tyrant, no self-aggrandising leader.
Rather, Christ embodies what the Scriptures call the Good Shepherd to God’s people, the servant leader, the self-giving Messiah. This vision of God’s reign is both challenging and inspiring in a world where religions try to claim God’s kingdom for themselves, while warring on each other, and where power is all too often abused and hoarded.
The bible readings bring together two central aspects of Christ’s life and activity. On the one side there is the proclamation of Christ as the incarnation of God, the supreme ruler over, and creator of, all things.
Both Jeremiah and Zechariah proclaim the Coming One who is God’s righteous ruler, in the line of David, who will judge the unrighteous leaders of Israel and replace them with a just reign.
The cross narrative from Luke 23, offers the other side of this reigning Messiah. God’s reign is most profoundly expressed and revealed through the cross. It is in the self-giving, gracious, life-bringing act of dying that Jesus wins the nations and establishes God’s reign in the world. This is radically different Monarchy – and it is one that the world desperately longs for.
May we be challenged to live under the authority of the Servant King as we worship together this week.
Blessings as we seek to know Christ and make Him known!