In the Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe, the First Reading is from the Second Book of Samuel. In today’s short reading, we have the third accounts of the anointing of David as King of Israel. He was anointed by the elders of Israel for three reasons. First, all the tribes of Israel are descended from the same ancestors. Second, David under Saul’s reign showed strength and wisdom on the role of the military commander. Finally, God gave David the role of shepherd king responsible for watching over the flock, protecting them from predators and the role of military commander who leads his people in battle, fighting against their enemies. David agrees to rule with justice, and the people promise loyalty.
The Second Reading is from St. Paul’s Letter to the Colossians. In this beautiful hymn, Paul celebrates the kingship of the cosmic Christ. It begins with an exhortation to give thanks to God for the way he has rescued us in Christ. All things are created in him, through him, and for him. In him, all things continue to exist and have their being. As first born, Jesus has priority and absolute primacy over everything. In Christ, works of creation and redemption are accomplished.
The Gospel Reading is from Luke. Today, we recognize Christ as King of the universe by recalling his passion and death on the Cross. In this Gospel, we hear the story of two men, one who even on a cross mocks Jesus, and the other who humbly asks that Jesus remember him as the coming of his kingdom. As king, we are to serve as Jesus served, to wash the feet of others, to reach out to the poor, vulnerable, and all who need to know God’s love through us. We will do so by making Christ the Lord and king of our lives.