Feed Them on Justice
This week churches around the world are marking the end of another liturgical year and celebrating Christ the King or the Reign of Christ Sunday. For us it is also Aotearoa Sunday, which really reminds us of how slow we were in this land to live out the reign of Christ with ngā iwi ō Aotearoa and the first Anglican Church in this land. And it is Stir-up Sunday – all of this stirs us up, I hope.
What is the deal with Christ the King or Reign of Christ Sunday? One of the people I read says it is a day to affirm God’s reign over empires that do not hunger and thirst for God’s righteousness. It is a day to remind ourselves that the reign of Christ as described in the Beatitudes and the Sermon on the Mount is what we are invited to work toward. And no political entity can ever bring that about.
As we end our church year this Sunday is an opportunity for us as God’s people to look back and ask how did we the church live out God’s reign, what have we done to further the kingdom of God here and now and where do we see in our ministry?
As we look forward to a new year and Advent we can take time to consider that God’s kingdom will come in this little child born in a manger and to ask what will we do to be citizens in this kingdom. What are some of our aspirations as we look ahead?
As we finish our time with Matthew, we are offered his version of Jesus final piece of teaching – the story of the sheep and the goats. Being part of Matthew’s community should change how we see ourselves, each other and all people. Christ the King does not mean we can lord it over people, but follow Christ’s way of servanthood. And we are offered Ezekiel’s great line – “feed them on justice.”