2 Samuel 23:1-7 Now these are the last words of David: The oracle of David, son of Jesse, the oracle of the man whom God exalted, the anointed of the God of Jacob, the favorite of the Strong One of Israel: The spirit of the LORD speaks through me, his word is upon my tongue. The God of Israel has spoken, the Rock of Israel has said to me: One who rules over people justly, ruling in the fear of God, is like the light of morning, like the sun rising on a cloudless morning, gleaming from the rain on the grassy land. Is not my house like this with God? For he has made with me an everlasting covenant, ordered in all things and secure. Will he not cause to prosper all my help and my desire? But the godless are all like thorns that are thrown away; for they cannot be picked up with the hand; to touch them one uses an iron bar or the shaft of a spear. And they are entirely consumed in fire on the spot. [NRSV]
Revelation 1:4b-8 Grace to you and peace from him who is and who was and who is to come, and from the seven spirits who are before his throne, and from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the firstborn of the dead, and the ruler of the kings of the earth. To him who loves us and freed us from our sins by his blood, and made us to be a kingdom, priests serving his God and Father, to him be glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen. Look! He is coming with the clouds; every eye will see him, even those who pierced him; and on his account, all the tribes of the earth will wail. So it is to be. Amen. “I am the Alpha and the Omega,” says the Lord God, who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty. [NRSV]
John 18:33-37 Then Pilate entered the headquarters again, summoned Jesus, and asked him, “Are you the King of the Jews?” Jesus answered, “Do you ask this on your own, or did others tell you about me?” Pilate replied, “I am not a Jew, am I? Your own nation and the chief priests have handed you over to me. What have you done?” Jesus answered, “My kingdom is not from this world. If my kingdom were from this world, my followers would be fighting to keep me from being handed over to the Jews. But as it is, my kingdom is not from here.” Pilate asked him, “So you are a king?” Jesus answered, “You say that I am a king. For this, I was born, and for this I came into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone who belongs to the truth listens to my voice.” [NRSV]
The cross-section of kingdoms of David, Herod, Jesus and the Lord God in heaven make for a day for us to look at authority, praise, faithfulness, divinity, humanity and to sort out who truly is our king.
The final words of King David speak of God’s power and trustworthiness. God is like the sunrise on a cloudless morning or the glistening of the dew upon the grass. These are beautiful images but the heart for us is our connection is in God’s covenant with the People of God.
God’s ability to hold up both ends of faithfulness, God’s part and our own, is what is the witness of God’s awesome power.
COVENANT is the greatest power. (This is God’s exercise and witness of loving grace.)
Secondly, we see the SACRIFICIAL self-lessness of God that cannot be compared to any earthly kingdom.
As Jesus stands before Gov. Pilate, plainly says his kingdom is above all kingdoms, and yet does not save himself that the world might be saved through him.
Finally, in the Holy of Holies at the very throne of heaven, Jesus seated at the right hand of God, carries the marks and signs of his suffering and selflessness for all people to REMEMBER and know, by his stripes, we are made whole.
COVENANT, SACRIFICE, REMEMBRANCE — Jesus is King!
- Reason for our Thanksgiving
- Reason for our Praise
- Reason for our Repentance
This Sunday is the last Sunday of the Christian year. We end our calendar and fiscal years in December, but today is the conclusion of another year in the reign of Christ.
What is the state of the church?
- We have celebrated the completion of paying off the indebtedness for our building
- We have prayed over dozens of prayer quilts
- We have given thousand$ in food, clothes and other assistance to those in need.
- We have sacked hundreds of meals for children
- We have gathered to worship, pray, sing and praise for 52 more Sundays
- We have baptized persons in faith and welcomed new members
- We have honored and remembered members who have died and gone ahead to heaven
- We have read and studied for hundreds of hours in Sunday School, classes and studies.
We have a final question to answer:
What does it mean for me to know Jesus is ‘my’ king.
- What is my end of the covenant? Have I been faithful to God’s call in my life?
- Have I given sacrificially of my prayers, attendance, gifts, service, and witness?
- Do we this day, choose to repent of our faults, failures, & excuses and
- today REAFFIRM the Jesus is my king? Is our King?
If so, repeat these:
- Lord have mercy on me, a sinner.
- Forgive my thoughts, words and deeds that have hurt you, others and myself
- I repent for the times my words and actions said NO when you asked for a YES.
- I am your servant, You are my King.
- He Lives! Jesus Christ lives in me, in us, today!