Jesus the Christ
December 4, 2015
“Where is he who has been born king of the Jews? For we have seen his star in the East, and have come to worship him.” -Matthew 2:2 (RSV)
“Every Christian ought to obey the civil authorities, for all legitimate authority is derived from God’s authority, and the existing authority is appointed under God.” –Romans 13:1 (Phillips)
Perhaps it is just part of the independent nature of the West. Or maybe it is left over from the ‘60’s. Or maybe it is a part of the uniqueness of being young…. or simply part of the American culture. But the reality is that it is a part of human nature. I am talking about our tendency to resist authority, to not want anyone to rule us.
Oh, it’s okay if we have authority over others. We, after all, have within us the capacity to be a benevolent ruler. But for someone else to have authority over us…. Well, that just isn’t going to happen.
We see this sentiment in the classroom, we see it on the street and we even see it in the home. Who is _______ to tell me what to do?!? (fill in the blank—- teacher, parent, friend, police officer, boss, professor, pastor, and even Jesus.)
It feels like we are moving towards a new age of chaos, a time in which the person who can shout the loudest, get the biggest crowd reaction or has the most money gets their way (for instance, can we say Donald Trump?). It seems that we (all of us) want to do what we want to do and look out for the person that stands in our way.
But that’s not entirely true. Every day, I drive to and from work within a relatively common understanding of the rules of the road. I pay for my hamburgers with an agreed upon currency. And I even operate by a fairly common understanding of how to relate to people (i.e.: offering a hot beverage to someone who is upset for you Big Bang fans).
In other words, despite the seeming chaos, maybe… just maybe… God is still in the midst. Maybe… just maybe… God is still empowering some to have authority over us and to lead us. Maybe… just maybe… Jesus the Christ is slowly moving us toward His coming Kingdom. And maybe… just maybe… we should bow down and worship Him this Christmas season and every season in the days ahead.
For Jesus came into the world not just make an impact for a few years, but make an impact in our lives for all eternity. He came not just to be a king, but to be the King of Kings… The Christ… the promised Son of God.
And whether we acknowledge His authority or not, it still exists. And maybe… just maybe… If we will humble ourselves and call on His name… the maybe… just maybe… He will heal our land.
Prayer: Oh God, you who spared nothing but sent Your Son into the world to save us, let us acknowledge your authority and power even in the midst of the chaos. Let us acknowledge Your ability to speak into existence Peace beyond all understanding. And so we beg of You, our God and Creator, let there be peace in our world today. Amen.
Reverend Dr. Steve Van Ostran