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Posted by Paul Edwards (Fr. Paul) on Nov 15, 2012 | Comments (0)


Pentecost XXVI Bottom Line Spirituality: Worldly and Godly Thinking

Click here to go to the Bottom Line Meditations for Pentecost 26

Godly Abiding Spiritually in Jesus Changes the Meaning of What we See Worldly When Not Abiding in Jesus.

Luke 23:33-43 "They crucified Jesus"  What is good about "Good Friday"?

The Church year is worldly based rationally on the historical life of Christ. There is the Advent of Purple for the preparation of the coming of Jesus Christ, “O come, O Come Emmanuel.”  It is followed by the White of Christmas, the birth of our Savior, “O Come all ye Faithful.” The Epiphany starts out White and then goes to Green for the insights of Wisdom, “Go tell it on the Mountains.” The Purple of Lent is for the “Forty Days and Forty Nights” that prepare us for the Red of Passion week with the death of God on Good Friday, “Were You there when they Crucified My Lord?” Three days later is the White of the Resurrection and on Sunday it is Easter, “Jesus Christ is Risen Today”. Fifty days later, the colors change to the fiery Red of Pentecost, “Breathe on Me Breath of God”, then to the White of Trinity, “Holy, Holy, Holy” and finally to the Green for Pentecost growth, “Lead on O King Eternal.”

Now for the concluding Sunday, we will call it “Christ the King Sunday”. What scripture verse will we use? “They crucified Jesus.” Oops, that must be the wrong one. It is all about the crucifixion, the darkest day in the Life of Christ. Why in the world would anyone use that scripture?

There are Christians who are confused with the death of Jesus and some angry and fearful that God would do such a thing to His Son. How can anyone understand this?

This scripture is one of the most difficult to understand in a worldly way. It must be understood spiritually, in a godly way. We are rationally looking at the same thing in the same way. To understand it, we must look spiritually at the same thing in a different way. We need to spiritually wonder what difference the death of Jesus on the cross makes when we are out of the Presence of His Love and when we are in the Love of His Presence.

What we must look at differently is “sin” and “Love”.

Sin, in the Law of Moses, is an immoral act against God’s Will. If we do not do God’s will, God will not love us. We must do God’s will to be loved by God.

In the grace of God, “Sin” is separation from God. Jesus was separated from God on the cross. God made Jesus who had no sin to be Sin for us. 2 Corinthians 5:21  The cry of Jesus on the cross, “My God why have you abandoned me”, is the pain He felt in being separated. Yet, God loved Jesus when He was in Sin as much as He loved Him before He was in Sin.

God loves us when we are separated from Him as much as He loved Jesus when Jesus was separated from Him. Jesus’ prayer is that we may be one as He and the Father are one, I in them and You in Me so that …the world will know that You have loved them even as You have loved Me.” John 17:22  Through His grace, God Loves us inclusively and unconditionally.

“Good” comes from the old English/German word “Gut” for “God”. Good Friday means God’s Friday. It is the day Jesus took away the Sin and separation of the World. The purpose of Christ coming into the World was to reconcile us with God, “That is, in Christ, God was reconciling the world to Himself. 2 Corinthians 5:19

This is exactly why the crucifixion is used as the conclusion to the Church Year. This scripture is not better than any of the others. Every one of these events is as necessary as any of the others. If one of them did not take place, none of them would have happened.  

Christ the King Sunday is not better but it is different. The crucifixion on Christ the King Sunday is at the heart of the Church Year. It is the basis for the New Covenant. It is the moment of grace. “For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.” John 1:17  It sets the theme of grace for the coming year. When it is read in church on Sundays it easy to just pass over it and say, “Let’s get on with Advent.” Instead, how about saying, “Let’s take it with us.”

O Come O Come Emmanuel!

 


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