Christ the King/Reign of Christ Sunday

I've spent two days this week at SMU Perkins School of Theology. It's Ministers Week, and the guest presenter is NT Wright, a theologian and retired Anglican priest. Dr Wright's final post before retirement was Bishop at Durham Cathedral (sidenote: Christy and I visited many cathedrals when we lived in England nearly two decades ago; Durham was my favorite). I mean, check it out:

How can you even work in that place? I am sure there are many amazing hiding places in there! Anyway, Bishop Wright now teaches theology at St Andrews University in Scotland. He's written a couple of books I've enjoyed: Simply Christian and Surprised by Hope. He is a prolific author. I've enjoyed listening to him.

Returning to Perkins always warms my soul (hey, it's hot today already-- a new DFW record!). When I arrived here to study, in 1995, I had very little training and scarcely any biblical knowledge. Perkins shaped me in a profound way. I remember this seminary as a holy place where I made new friends, most of whom are pastors today. I remember the sense of community here. And of course at my first semester at SMU I met Christy. So there's that. Amazing!

As I write this, I am sitting at one of the desks in Bridwell Library, a quiet storehouse of ideas. Well it's supposed to be quiet. At the table next to me a couple of coed students are whispering and giggling. One of them seems to actually trying to study; the other not so much. Hey-- it's a theological library!! I'm old.

Anyway, I always loved sitting at one of these great wooden desks, piles of books spread out, glowing in the light of the desk lamp. Not much has changed in 21 years! It's fitting that I am here this week, in this theological library, because this Sunday is Christ the King/Reign of Christ Sunday. We'll reflect on the lordship of Christ over all things-- the church, the world, the universe and everything within it. Thinking of Christ in a cosmic sense has a different scale than a rabbi from Nazareth! So this Sunday, come in expectation:

  • Like the wisemen: "Where is the child that is born King of the Jews?" (Matthew 2:2)
  • Like the crowds on Palm Sunday: "Blessed is the King who comes in the name of the Lord!" (Luke 19:38)
A prayer for the Reign of Christ, from the Book of Common Prayer
Almighty and everlasting God, whose will it is to restore all things in your well-beloved Son, the King of kings and Lord of lords: Mercifully grant that the peoples of the earth, divided and enslaved by sin, may be freed and brought together under his gracious rule; who lives and reigns with you, and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever, Amen.

See you Sunday.