There is a lesson that history and the bible keeps teaching us; that earthly power corrupts. Kings and leaders abuse their power, most often to protect their power or in an effort to gain more. Even in our own lives, the power we have over others can corrupt us too.
God answer to this was to send Christ. His kingdom is not of this world, and his power and authority are not corruptible. Jesus didn’t build an army. Jesus didn’t his power to physically remove religious leaders of his day from the temple or even tear it down. Nor did he seek to defeat the power of the ruling Romans. Jesus wasn’t after an earthly victory. But through his death, resurrection, and ascension, he claimed his heavenly victory. A victory to which we, who are baptized in His Name, are all heirs.
But we are not there yet, both as a church and as individuals.
If we are not careful, we too can get caught up by the power of this world. In the Church, we can get and sometimes I think we are caught up in who we think we are having inherited this beautiful building and this storied Anglican tradition. Somewhere along the way, all that stuff can became more important to us than God and Jesus. Even in our families and ourselves, for us who are one or two generations away from the great depression, things had been getting better and better and but now we have been corrupted by buying cheap, consuming more and more, and living beyond our means. In our day to day living, we have forgotten the landowner, the creator of this great world and all the resources we use so wastefully.
There is a way out of this mess, that is why Jesus came in the first place.
First, repent our sin and ask for forgiveness. We have a general confession in almost every worship service we have at church on Sunday. Here, you can receive forgiveness. You can ask for forgiveness in your private prayers. We all make mistakes and when we are ready to change, God is ready to forgive.
Second, recognize that Christ is our true authority in life and be guided by his teachings and his ways. This should be part of our everyday. In our prayers, in reading the bible, and in reflecting on and examining how we act in light of Christ.
God came in Christ so that we would always have a way to forgiveness, a way to return to a right relationship with our God and maker. You can do it today.