Saturday, October 16, 2021

Saturday Sermon


Jesus says to his disciples, who were annoyingly busy fighting among themselves over their respective positions of power in the  coming Kingdom, "For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” (Mk. 10:45)

Christ does so on the Cross, the throne of his sovereignty, by which he exercises dominion over sin and death, opening the gates of heaven to the faithful and inaugurating the Kingdom. I found this, by the Anglican bishop NT Wright helpful:

We have, alas, belittled the cross, imagining it merely as a mechanism for getting us off the hook of our own petty naughtiness or as an example of some general benevolent truth. It is much, much more. It is the moment when the story of Israel reaches its climax; the moment when, at last, the watchmen on Jerusalem’s walls see their God coming in his kingdom; the moment when the people of God are renewed so as to be, at last, the royal priesthood who will take over the world not with the love of power but with the power of love; the moment when the kingdom of God overcomes the kingdoms of the world. It is the moment when a great old door, locked and barred since our first disobedience, swings open suddenly to reveal not just the garden, opened once more to our delight, but the coming city, the garden city that God had always planned and is now inviting us to go through the door and build with him. The dark power that stood in the way of this kingdom vision has been defeated, overthrown, rendered null and void. 


The dark power that stood in the way of this kingdom vision has been defeated, overthrown, rendered null and void. Yes, powerful, though I'd change "garden city" to "heavenly Jerusalem."

That aside, how easy it is to be a porch warrior or for that matter an armchair Christian. Our Savior demands more, we're to take up our cross and follow him, entirely. 

In the end, all will be asked of us. Pray that with James and John we will, by the grace of God, say yes and that by loving as Christ loved us find greatness in the Kingdom of God. And know that the demons, to say nothing of their temporal allies flee before the sign and the life of those who live in Christ crucified.

In Hoc Signo,



Ed Bonderenka said...

Powerful stuff there.

LSP said...

I was struck by that Wright quote, Ed. I have to say.

Paul M said...

Always appreciated NT Wright’s scholarly insights and the way he frames Biblical perspective…thank you for this reminder.

LL said...

Keep your eye riveted to the Cross, LSP.

Jules said...

Petty naughtiness?!

Powerful.Building God's army.

LSP said...

Glad it was helpful, Paul. I need to read more of his work.

LSP said...

Ain't that the truth, LL.

LSP said...

I thought you'd like that bit, Jules!

Wright did some good work, imo, though he comes from the "reformed" side of the fence. That said, "garden city" seems a little jarring. Makes the Kingdom of Heaven sound like a place you go to buy perennials, bulbs, potting soil, shrubs and small trees in pots. Perhaps cast concrete and fiberglass lawn ornaments to boot.

Heaven? Hmmmmm. For some.