Vicar’s Reflection: 10th June 2018, 10th Ordinary Sunday
We tend to not highlight the fact that Jesus was accused of being an agent of the devil; nor that his family worried that he was insane. We prefer to focus on Jesus the triumphant and glorified Lord. We want to be triumphant and successful people, so we want the God we worship to be the same. This is partial idolatry because it is not the complete truth. Jesus was a radical, with strange and difficult teachings: “eat my flesh, drink my blood!?” He challenged the orthodoxy of his time: “the Son of Man is Lord of the Sabbath!”. He pushed cultural and personal correctness boundaries: “forgive seventy times seven”. He saw through apparent concern to do the ‘right’ thing exposing it as self-interested hypocrisy. He was a very uncomfortable guy to be around. Who then should we give authority to in our lives? How should we worship and live as Christian people? The Israelites wanted a King to unite them. St Paul recognises that the “earthly tent” of human existence will pass away, but God’s loving purpose will prevail in the end. The Psalmist (138) praises God as the ultimate authority who will bring what is unfinished to completion. Ultimate authority belongs with God and until this is fully completed we must be cautious about giving too much power to lesser authorities; nor be too quick to judge situations and people who challenge, upset or confuse us. God is working His purpose out and Jesus is his local agent. We’d be mad not to follow Him.