Reign of Christ Sunday is a marker for the end of the liturgical year. It is a way of saying we wrap up a year’s worth of worship by claiming again whose we are. We reiterate our mission – to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world. The emphasis this week is in the middle – “of Jesus Christ.” That is the kind of disciple that we are. We aren’t disciples of our own wisdom; we aren’t disciples following the winds of this world. We are disciples of Jesus Christ.
What the John text tells us is that Jesus is a leader like no other. The rules by which other leaders lead don’t apply to Jesus. To follow Jesus is to learn to be like him. And in this story, it means being willing to embrace a complicated truth over a comfortable lie.
Our worship this day should be about the elevation of Jesus the Christ. There should be praises sung; there should be allegiance declared; there should be confession about divided loyalty admitted. But even in the face of confession of sin, there is above it all a joy that is almost indescribable. We are who we are because of the one we call the Son of God. We are made into a loving and serving community because of the Christ who loved and served the world. We are told the truth about who we are because he is the truth made flesh before us. Let this day, this time of worship, be a true celebration of hope and of joy and the recognition that we can live a life that matters.
Rev. Dr. Derek Weber, Director of Preaching Ministries, served churches in Indiana and Arkansas and the British Methodist Church. His PhD is from University of Edinburgh in preaching and media. He has taught preaching in seminary and conference settings for more than 20 years.