Summary: A sermon for Christ the King Sunday

Christ the King Sunday

Proper 29

Jer 23:1-6; Ps 46; Col 1:11-20; Luke 23:33-43

"What kind of King"

"And when they came to the place which is called The Skull, there they crucified him, and the criminals, one on the right and one on the left. And Jesus said, "Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do." And they cast lots to divide his garments. And the people stood by, watching; but the rulers scoffed at him, saying, "He saved others; let him save himself, if he is the Christ of God, his Chosen One!" The soldiers also mocked him, coming up and offering him vinegar, and saying, "If you are the King of the Jews, save yourself!" There was also an inscription over him, "This is the King of the Jews." One of the criminals who were hanged railed at him, saying, "Are you not the Christ? Save yourself and us!" But the other rebuked him, saying, "Do you not fear God, since you are under the same sentence of condemnation? And we indeed justly; for we are receiving the due reward of our deeds; but this man has done nothing wrong." And he said, "Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom." And he said to him, "Truly, I say to you, today you will be with me in Paradise."" Luke 23:33-43, RSV.

Grace and peace to you from our Lord and Saviour, Jesus who is the King. Amen

Our gospel lesson seems out of place as it describes the crucifixion of Jesus. It is more of a Good Friday text, not the kind of text one would see on Christ the Kind Sunday. But is it?

Jesus came as a different kind of King. Not the kind that most people thought of.

A poem says it well:

Title: They Missed Him

They were looking for a lion,

He came as a Lamb, and they missed Him.

They were looking for a warrior,

He came as a Peacemaker, and they missed Him.

They were looking for a king,

He came as a Servant, and they missed Him.

They were looking for liberation from Rome,

He submitted to the Roman stake, and they missed Him.

They were looking for a fit to their mold,

He was the mold maker, and they missed Him.

What are you looking for? Lion? Warrior? King? Liberator?

What are you looking for?

They were looking for their temporal needs to be met,

He came to meet their eternal need, and they missed Him.

He came as a Lamb to be sacrificed for your sin.

Will you miss Him?

He came to make peace between God and man.

Will you miss Him?

He came to model servant hood for all mankind.

Will you miss Him?

He came that we might have true liberty.

Will you miss Him?

He came to give you eternal life.

Will you miss Him?

When we submit to the Lamb, we will meet the Lion.

Join with the Peacemaker, and we will meet the Warrior.

Work with the Servant, and we will meet the King.

Walk with the Submitted, and we will meet the Liberator.

Concern ourselves with the eternal, and we will have the temporal.

If Jesus is not fitting into the mold you have, then come to the mold

maker and get a new one. Submit to His plan for your life and you will

see the eternal need met first; then all the other things you have need

of will be taken care of as well.

--Author unknown (1)

They missed him. People saw the Christ through their own eyes and missed him. They wanted a warrior and he came as the king of peace. They wanted a lion , he came as a lamb. Jesus was not the kind of king that most people thought. He came as a suffering king and many missed him.

So I do think our text is appropriate for today, because Jesus came as the suffering Messiah and they missed him.

All of our lessons this morning speak of this king who many missed.

In our lesson from Jeremiah, the kingdom of God is described in terms of justice and righteousness. This kingdom is described as something different than usual something different than the world is used to. In Isaiah 61:1-4 the kingdom of God is described in this manner: "He has chosen me and sent me to bring good news to the poor, To heal the brokenhearted To announce release to captives, And freedom to those in prison He has sent me to proclaim, That the time has come, When the Lord will save his people..." or as Jesus says In Mark 1:15 "The right time has come, and the Kingdom Of God is near Turn away from your sins and believe the Good News!"

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