Father Santosh Madanu: Solemnity of Christ the King

Sermon delivered on Christ the King Sunday C, November 24, 2019 at St. Augustine’s Anglican Church, Westerville, OH.

If you prefer to listen to the audio podcast of today’s sermon, click here.

Lectionary texts: Jeremiah 23.1-6; Psalm 46; Colossians 1.11-20; Luke 23.33-43.

Christ the king Sunday celebrates the full authority of Christ as King and Lord of the universe.

The Jewish word messiah and the Greek word “Christ.” Both mean “the anointed one,” refer to Jesus the expected King of Jews and the world.

Pope Pius IX instituted the feast of Christ the King in 1925, to be celebrated throughout the universal church, in his encyclical Quas Primas. He connected the increasing denial of Christ as king to the rise of secularism throughout much of Europe. Some of the Christians began to doubt Christ’s authority and existence, as well as the Church’s power to continue Christ’s authority. Dictators in those times often attempted to assert authority over the church. And the feast of the Christ the king will make the faithful their due to honor and love to Jesus Christ as their Lord and savior.

The institution of Christ the King feast make the secular world to realize Christ Jesus would reign in our hearts, minds, wills and bodies. And respect the church’s right to freedom. Christ Kingship is one of humility and service.

The kingdom of Heaven is not democracy. God does not take opinion polls, nor can he be recalled or voted out of office, we are dealing with a loving and just king. Many forms of governments like Nazi Germany, Communism, Socialism, Democracy and the Russian Revolutions etc have proved imperfect with their leader’s selfish policies.

When once men recognize, both private and public life, that Christ is king, the Society will at last receive the great blessings of real liberty, well-ordained discipline, peace and harmony. It enables the citizens to obey the law of the land. It is good to have Nationalism and love for one’s own country but ultimate loyalty is due to Christ and His kingdom.

42 Jesus called them together and said, “You know that those who are regarded as rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them. 43 Not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, 44 and whoever wants to be first must be slave of all. 45 For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” (Mark 10: 42-45)

JOHN 18:33-35. ARE YOU THE KING OF THE JEWS?

33Pilate therefore entered again into the Praetorium, called Jesus, and said to him, “Are you the King of the Jews?” 34Jesus answered him, “Do you say this by yourself, or did others tell you about me?” 35Pilate answered, “I’m not a Jew, am I? Your own nation and the chief priests delivered you to me. What have you done?”

JOHN 18:36-37. MY KINGDOM IS NOT OF THIS WORLD

36Jesus answered, “My Kingdom (Greek: basileia) is not of this world (Greek: kosmou—from kosmos). If my Kingdom were of this world, then my servants would fight, that I wouldn’t be delivered (Greek: paradotho – from paradidomi) to the Jews. But now my Kingdom is not from here.” 37Pilate therefore said to him, “Are you a king then?” Jesus answered, “You say that I am a king. For this reason I have been born, and for this reason I have come into the world, that I should testify to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth listens to my voice.”

The kingdom of Jesus is tied to his suffering and death. His coming at the end of time to judge the nations with Justice balanced with His radical love, mercy, peace and forgiveness.

1 Tim 6:15 “ This will be made manifest at the proper times by the blessed and only Sovereign, the king of kings and the Lord of Lords.”

The kingdom is humble: Jesus inaugurates a kingdom that grows through humble acts of service. Our St. Augustine Church serves the poor, educates the young, welcomes everyone, visits the prisoners and pray for the sick and loves others. Because our power and strength is power of the Cross and strength of Jesus’s love. So therefore let us surrender totally to the Lord King of the Universe.

We are blessed with freedom to worship in private and Public Square. There are millions of people in the Middle East countries have no freedom to worship, either they have to worship God set by their religious country or die.

Quran explains if you believe Jesus is God, you go to hell, where it also mentions that Jesus speaking to Alla saying”by no means have I had no right to tell them to worship me”

Quran denies neither Jesus was killed nor rose.

I claim Jesus is the Christ the king from the evidences of His Lordship.

The following reference will prove that Jesus is taking the very nature of God and very Name of God

John 1:1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word waswith God, and the Word was God. 2He was with God in the beginning.…

John 1: 18No one has ever seen God, but the one and only Son, who is Himself God and is at the Father’s side, has made Him known.

John 8:57-58 Then the Jews said to Him, “You are not yet fifty years old, and you have seen Abraham? Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I am.”

Exodus 3:14 God reveals Himself His name is “I AM”

John 20:27-28 Jesus Claimed to be God

Then Jesus said to Thomas, “Put your finger here and look at my hands. Reach out your hand and put it into My side. Stop doubting and believe.”28Thomas replied, “My Lord and my God!” 29Jesus said to him, “Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.”…

1Peter 3:14-15 always be ready with the reason for the faith and hope in Jesus Christ.

14But even if you should suffer for what is right, you are blessed. “Do not fear what they fear; do not be shaken.” 15But in your hearts sanctify Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give a defense to everyone who asks you the reason for the hope you possess. But respond with gentleness and respect

Jesus as a just God and King, he paid the price of sin through His suffering and death for us. And freed us from the slavery of sin and hell and thus justified every one with His infinite mercy.