“‘As far as the east is from the west, So far has He removed our transgressions from us.’ Psalms 103:12 https://www.bible.com/bible/114/PSA.103.12
I’ve always particularly been fond of the Casting Crowns song, “East to West”… It plays off of this Psalm… and equates the immensity to the distance from one scarred hand to the other…in other words… those scars… those wounds….are a tangible reality of how much God loved us.
God. God incarnate. He Has Come…He is Here… He will come. That in essence, is the mystery of faith, and the liturgical year in a nutshell. In another week, the Latin Rite church will begin advent, a season of Preparation. The church will take on a more penitent, somber (though not as much as lent) persona. The Priest will don purple, a color of penitence. The Gloria, will not be sung again except on the feast of the Immaculate conception, and then not again until Christmas.
The readings of tomorrow will be incredibly apocryphal, including the Gospel, which is perhaps one of the most black and white readings you can find. There will be a clear judgment. There will be the saved…and there will be the damned. The Great Judge, will judge the people.
We like to paint Jesus as this almost hippie esque person. The “Buddy Christ”… always loving…always caring…always there. While this is true… its OUR CHOICE to accept this mercy and grace. It is a mercy and grace only he can give.
Everything in scripture, and the next 4 weeks…not only points to the first coming, but the second and final coming of Christ. We get hung up on the word “Apocalypse”… and instantly think end of the world, but that’s not what apocalypse means at all…rather, it means a reordering, a perfection of Man, Time, Space… so that we return to the perfect order that we began with, a sovereign King, and we his sheep, the sheep of his flock.
Now, what does this have to do with a song about forgiveness of sins? Well as I was sitting there watching my children… I began to think of my very many many sins. Lets face it, if you know me..by all accounts… I’m a complete screw up. However.. the purifying, sanctifying aspect of that, is my two children. When I stand before the throne..I hope I can weigh their witness.. against my many transgressions. That said, one can easily think there is no hope at all. Where is the line that was crossed… and how does one get back across it.
The simple answer is, we are all doomed. Everyone of us, if we rely on our own means, and our own understanding – Thank GOD… I can rely on him. Only the Sovereign king of the universe could fix my brokeness, and that love is as immense as the east is from the west.
When I think of Christ the King….aside from the “classic” thoughts of a beatific glorified man, I think of someone whose benevolence can only be sized like the distance of east to west. That thought doesn’t make me despair, but rather I find comfort.
Jesus Christ, Yesterday, Today and Forever.