A sample text widget

Etiam pulvinar consectetur dolor sed malesuada. Ut convallis euismod dolor nec pretium. Nunc ut tristique massa.

Nam sodales mi vitae dolor ullamcorper et vulputate enim accumsan. Morbi orci magna, tincidunt vitae molestie nec, molestie at mi. Nulla nulla lorem, suscipit in posuere in, interdum non magna.

Christ the King

seperating the sheep and goatsWhat does a ‘king’ mean to us today? And what comes to mind when we think of Christ as our ‘king’?
Australia was recently visited by the British monarch Queen Elizabeth II amidst great fanfare. The media followed her every move and public speech.
If Jesus Christ the King were to visit us today, would he receive a similar fanfare? Chances are there would be riots and protestors with crowds of eager believers clamouring for a glimpse of our Lord.
But is this how Christ the King would come to us anyway? Scripture paints a picture of Jesus’ promised return as a time of great tumult when there will be terrible signs and confusion.
“Then they will see the Son of Man coming in the clouds with great power and glory.” [Mk 13:26]
“For the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the Archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air.” [1 Thess 4:16, 17]
So when will this be? Some ponder endlessly on this elusive question. But Jesus admitted that even he doesn’t know when that time might come: “No one knows about that day or hour, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father.” [Matt 24:36]
So what do we do meanwhile? Today’s gospel is the Parable of the Sheep and the Goats [Matt 25: 31-46] in which Jesus is vividly clear about what he expects of us as we await his eventual return: we are to treat others as if they were Christ himself.
This is a hard teaching. It demands much of us, perhaps too much for some. But Jesus Christ the King is a generous king who wants us to be found obedient, righteous and acceptable when that time comes so that we might share eternal life with him.
In the meantime Jesus calls us to welcome the stranger, feed the hungry, clothe those without, cheer the sick, and put love into action as we honour ‘God with us’ in the here and now [see 1Cor13: 1-13].

Lismore Anglican Parish Bulletin Insert
Sun 20th Nov 2011 9.30am St Andrew’s, 6.30pm St Peter’s
Christ the King!

Parable of the Sheep and the Goats [Matthew 25: 31-46 NIV]
31 “When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, he will sit on his glorious throne. 32 All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate the people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. 33 He will put the sheep on his right and the goats on his left.
34 “Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. 35 For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, 36 I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’
37 “Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? 38 When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? 39 When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’
40 “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’
41 “Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. 42 For I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, 43 I was a stranger and you did not invite me in, I needed clothes and you did not clothe me, I was sick and in prison and you did not look after me.’
44 “They also will answer, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or needing clothes or sick or in prison, and did not help you?’
45 “He will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.’ 46 “Then they will go away to eternal punishment, but the righteous to eternal life.”

? Jesus will return at a time unknown to even him [v36]
? There will be a great separating of the flock [vv32-34, 41, 46]
? In the meantime we are called to put love into action in his name [vv40, 45]
? We are to cultivate an attitude of thankfulness in all things [1 Thess 5:18, Col 3:17, Eph 5:20]
In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you. [1Thess 5:18]