Friends, in today’s Gospel, Jesus acknowledges that he is “lord even of the sabbath.”

And the claim of the first Christians was Iesous Kyrios—Jesus is Lord. This was bound to annoy both Jews and Gentiles. The Jews would be massively put off by the use of the term Kyrios in describing an ordinary human being. Moreover, the implication that this man was the Messiah of Israel—when he had died at the hands of Israel’s enemies—was simply blasphemous.

And for the Greeks, this claim was subversive, for a watchword of the time was Kaiser Kyrios—the Emperor is Lord. A new system of allegiance was being proposed, a new type of ordering and lordship—and this was indeed a threat to the regnant system.Christians should enter the public arena boldly and confidently, for we are not announcing a private or personal spirituality but rather declaring a new King under whose lordship everything must fall. If Jesus is truly Lord, then government, business, family life, the arts, sexuality, and entertainment all come properly under his headship.

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