“All power in heaven and on earth has been given to me.”
Among the most magnificent passages in the New Testament is the hymn in Paul’s Letter to the Philippians. Jesus Christ is described as one who surrenders equality with God in favor of sharing humanity with us. It’s an awe-inspiring exchange. Who would do it but God alone?
Yet here at the close of Matthew’s Gospel, on the far side of the empty tomb, Jesus returns to his disciples to tell them that all power has been restored to him. He who once emptied himself and bowed as low as a slave has now been lifted up to the highest place. Jesus has become the demonstration of his own teaching. The meek one inherits the earth, the lowly one surpasses the wealthiest, and the despised outcast now rules the world’s kings. In our most morose news cycle, there’s comfort in knowing no name is greater than Jesus. Even better is the revelation that Jesus remains with us until the end of time: your time, mine, and everyone’s. We meet a lot of people who think they’re in charge. Only one authority is worthy of that claim.
Power is an attribute of God, but earthly authorities also wield a hefty amount. How do you use the power that’s in your hands?
LET US PRAY…
Creator, Redeemer, Sanctifier,
We have come to know your love for us
in three illuminating ways.
Let us share your passion for the world you made,
the human community you rescued,
and the Church upon which you shower your grace.
In you, we find our destiny.
While The Gospel at Home takes a break in the summer months, we’ll be drawing our weekly reflections from Exploring the Sunday Readings.
Image credit: Distant Shores Media/Sweet Publishing [CC BY-SA 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons