As the Church Year comes to an end, the focus is on the future
and the fulfillment of the promises God has made to humanity during
the course of our history. These promises are summed up in Jesus
Christ the King. His kingship, as we know, is far different from
any type of kingship humankind has experienced. The nature of
Christ's kingship tells us a lot about who God is for us, and
we come to know the nature of that kingship through God's word
found in the Bible as interpreted by the Magisterium of the Church.
In the reading from the second Book of Samuel, the nature of Christ's
kingship is revealed sacramentally in the exercise of David's
kingship as shepherd and commander. Shepherd here probably does
not need any further explanation, but commander would as applied
to Christ, for he is not a military commander but one who makes
demands on each of us to follow him in creating an environment
of peace and justice here on earth that points to God's perfect
and complete control of history at the end of time.
The letter to the Colossians continues to open out the nature
of Christ's kingship in some of the richest language of the New
Testament. His intimacy with his Father makes it possible for
us to claim in faith that every dimension of creation is organically
interconnected with one another because Jesus is the means by
which the Father created the universe of nature and humanity,
and the world that transcends the sensual. He is the personal
principal that integrates every dimension of reality. We human
beings are privileged to be intimately involved with God by our
creation in his image and likeness through Christ, and with the
natural world for which we were given ecological charge by God
in Christ as the servants of his world.
The same New Testament letter and the Gospel passage from St.
Luke first advise us of what our dark side has done, but also
what Christ the King has done for humanity out of love. Our dark
side dislocated us from God's creation both human and natural,
by the ways we have each often alienated ourselves from one another
and from the world that God gave us to manage in his name. But
through the blood of the cross our King has made possible the
reconciliation that the author of Colossians writes about, and
Jesus himself spoke into existence for the fellow crucified with
Jesus who recognized Jesus' true nature, and asked for repentance
and inclusion in that complete and perfect Kingdom Jesus brought
about by the cruel and, unfortunately, too often, usual punishment,
that he refused to reject.
Our God revealed to us in Christ the King is a ruler who rules
by love, caretaking, shepherding, creating and re-creating, and
reconciling, but also demanding; demanding of us to live in his
image and likeness and to steward the creation with which he has
gifted us. Let us now continue in this Eucharistic celebration
to give thanks and praise to the Father through the Son and in
the Holy Spirit for the King we have been given and, in whom we
live in faith, hope, and love.