The First Message Of The Christ
– Matthew 2:41-51
Even as a child Jesus knew he was the Christ. He knew his mission and he was committed to it. At 12 years of age he began his ministry by addressing the leaders of the temple. He asked questions of them and displayed a wisdom that amazed them. He was indeed an anomaly, but in fact he was the Christ of God who had come to bring the opportunity of peace to mankind.
What was the message he was teaching? We have no record of what he was saying, but if the rest of his ministry is any indication it isn’t hard to figure it out. He was teaching them that the kingdom they were expecting was present and would soon be manifest.
However, even though they were expecting a king to come and a kingdom to be established, they did not realize the nature of that kingdom. Neither did they realize the manner in which the kingdom would be established.
The world had never known a king who built his kingdom upon love. Every world conqueror has built their kingdom by force, and not one of those empires has lasted. Jesus came teaching, “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called sons of God,” and this kingdom of the heart cannot be stopped.
This was a new message. The mindset of man was to conquer through force, but Christ taught us to humble our enemies by serving them in love. The result is that today, 2000 years after his kingdom was begun in the hearts of his followers, there are 100’s of millions of people who would gladly lay down their life for this Jesus who is called the Christ, the Prince of Peace.
Prayer: Lord, grant me the grace to love as you loved and to serve those who would persecute you for your namesake. Amen.
Message: This was a new message. The mindset of man was to conquer through force, but Christ taught us to humble our enemies by serving them in love.
Affirmation: When the love of God is demonstrated, even to those who would be our enemies, then the grace of God is extended to all who will come.
Reflection: What was the message Jesus was teaching the educated religious leaders when he was just 12 years old? Could he have been telling them that they will never win the hearts of the people forcing them to live a law that they themselves could not keep? How did the message Christ presented differ from the message of the Pharisees and other the priests?