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LUKE DRAWS A CONTRAST

BETWEEN THE RELIGIOUS
LEADERS WHO DID NOT
ACKNOWLEDGE JESUS AND
THE PEOPLE WHO REPENTED
THEIR REJECTION OF HIM.
THE TAUNTS RECALL
JESUS’ TEMPTATION IN
LUKE 4:3 -11;
JESUS IS BEING TOLD TO HOLD ON TO HIS
LIFE INSTEAD OF GIVING IT AWAY. HIS
FAITH IN HIS GRACIOUS FATHER SAVED
HIM FROM ADHERING TO THEIR
TAUNTING. WHEN WE HEAR THEM SNEER
AT HIM AS CHRIST OF GOD, LET US
RECALL THAT THIS IS THE VERY WORDS
OF PETER IN
LUKE 9: 20;
THEN HE SAID TO THEM, “BUT WHO DO
YOU SAY THAT I AM?” PETER SAID IN
REPLY,
“THE MESSIAH OF GOD.”
CHOSEN ONE: SEE 9:35 “…
FROM THE CLOUD CAME A VOICE
THAT SAID, “THIS IS MY CHOSEN
SON; LISTEN TO HIM.”
VERSE 37:
KING OF THE JEWS:
IN LUKE 19:38. THEY
PROCLAIMED:

“BLESSED IS THE KING
WHO COMES IN THE
NAME OF THE LORD.
PEACE IN HEAVEN AND
GLORY IN THE HIGHEST.”
ONLY IN LUKE IS
JESUS EXPLICITLY
GIVEN THE TITLE
KING WHEN HE
ENTERS JERUSALEM
IN TRIUMPH.
LUKE HAS INSERTED THIS TITLE INTO THE
WORDS OF PS 118:26 THAT HERALDED
THE ARRIVAL OF THE PILGRIMS COMING
TO THE HOLY CITY AND TO THE TEMPLE.
JESUS IS THEREBY ACCLAIMED AS KING
(SEE LK 1:32) AND AS THE ONE WHO
COMES
(SEE MAL 3:1; LK 7:19).
THE PENITENT
THIEF, ALSO
KNOWN AS THE
GOOD THIEF OR
THE THIEF ON
THE CROSS, IS
ONE OF TWO
UNNAMED
PERSONS
MENTIONED IN A
VERSION OF
THE CRUCIFIXION
OF JESUS IN THE
NEW TESTAMENT.
THE GOSPEL OF
LUKE DESCRIBES
ONE ASKING JESUS
TO "REMEMBER
HIM" WHEN JESUS
WILL HAVE "COME
INTO" HIS
KINGDOM.
HE IS GIVEN THE NAME
“DISMAS" IN THE GOSPEL OF
NICODEMUS AND, THOUGH
NOT FORMALLY CANONIZED
BY THE CATHOLIC CHURCH, IS
VENERATED IN SOME
CATHOLIC TRADITIONS AS
"SAINT DISMAS"  (SOMETIMES
DYSMAS; IN SPANISH AND
PORTUGUESE, DIMAS).
THE OTHER IS THE
IMPENITENT THIEF, A
CHARACTER DESCRIBED AS
THE ONE WHO TAUNTS
JESUS ABOUT NOT SAVING
HIMSELF, WHILE THE
OTHER ASKS FOR MERCY.
IN APOCRYPHAL WRITINGS,
THE IMPENITENT THIEF IS
GIVEN THE NAME GESTAS.
”… NOW ONE OF THE
CRIMINALS HANGING THERE
REVILED JESUS, SAYING, “ARE
YOU NOT THE MESSIAH? SAVE
YOURSELF AND US.”
VERSE 39: CHRIST: LUKE’S
CONCLUDES THE CHRISTIAN
CONFESSION OF FAITH WHICH
HE HAS IRONICALLY PLACED
ON THE LIPS OF JESUS’
MOCKERS.
THE OTHER, HOWEVER,
REBUKING HIM, SAID IN REPLY,
“HAVE YOU NO FEAR OF GOD,
FOR YOU ARE SUBJECT TO THE
SAME CONDEMNATION? AND
INDEED, WE HAVE BEEN
CONDEMNED JUSTLY, FOR THE
SENTENCE WE RECEIVED
CORRESPONDS TO OUR
CRIMES, BUT THIS MAN HAS
DONE NOTHING CRIMINAL.”
THEN HE SAID, “JESUS,
REMEMBER ME WHEN YOU
COME INTO YOUR
KINGDOM.”
VERSES 40-43: THE
“GOOD” CRIMINAL
INITIATES THE POSITIVE
RESPONSES TO JESUS. IN
THIS “GOSPEL WITHIN THE
GOSPEL, WE FIND
DRAMATIC EXPRESSION OF
THE THEOLOGY OF THE
CROSS AND LUKE’S
CONCEPT OF SALVATION IN
VERSE 42: JESUS: ONLY IN THE
NAME OF JESUS IS THERE
SALVATION. IN ACTS 4:12, WE
FIND THE FOLLOWING;
“…THERE IS NO SALVATION
THROUGH ANYONE ELSE, NOR
IS THERE ANY OTHER NAME
UNDER HEAVEN GIVEN TO THE
HUMAN RACE BY WHICH WE
ARE TO BE SAVED.”
IN THE ROMAN WORLD OF LUKE’S DAY,
SALVATION WAS OFTEN ATTRIBUTED TO
THE EMPEROR WHO WAS HAILED AS
“SAVIOR” AND “GOD.” THE CRIMINAL
HAS DEEP FAITH THAT THE DYING JESUS
IS TRULY A KING AND CAN DISPENSE THE
PARDON AND MERCY WHICH ONLY A KING
CAN.
VERSE 43: JESUS DECLARES
THE REPENTANT CRIMINAL
FREE FROM SIN.
“IT IS AN ACQUITTAL UTTERED
BY HIM WHO IS “THE ONE
APPOINTED BY GOD AS JUDGE
OF THE LIVING AND THE DEAD.
TODAY, WITH ME: THIS ASPECT
OF SALVATION IS PRESENT IN
JESUS’ TABLE FELLOWSHIP
WITH SINNERS AND HIS
RESTORATION OF UNCLEAN
FOLK TO BE WITH THEIR
FELLOW HUMAN BEINGS.
PARADISE: HE REPLIED TO
HIM, “AMEN, I SAY TO YOU,
TODAY YOU WILL BE WITH ME
IN PARADISE.”
THE GATES OF PARADISE IS
REOPENED BY THE
OBEDIENCE AND FAITH OF
THE NEW ADAM.
Lesson
POPE PIUS XI INSTITUTED THE
FEAST OF CHRIST THE KING IN
1925 TO REMIND CHRISTIANS
THAT THEIR ALLEGIANCE WAS
TO THEIR RULER IN HEAVEN AS
OPPOSED TO EARTHLY
SUPREMACY. CHRIST'S
KINGSHIP IS NOT BASED ON
"HUMAN POWER" BUT ON
LOVING AND SERVING OTHERS.
“… THE SON OF MAN DID NOT
COME TO BE SERVED BUT TO
SERVE AND TO GIVE HIS LIFE
AS A RANSOM FOR MANY.”
MATTHEW 20:28