On Kingship and Shepherding

Modern-Israeli-shepherd-Bashir-Sheikh-Yousef-2011Today, I am in the mode of celebration.  It is not only that I am celebrating the victory of Manny Pacquiao who defended once again his boxing title and proved to the world that he is the real king of boxing, but it is because of Jesus which the Gospel for today presents t us His kingship in a different way.  What kind of kingship that the Gospel presents to us today?  As I reflect upon the Gospel for today, what struck me most is the icon of the Good Shepherd that is tending and protecting his sheep.  Why shepherding is the image of kingship for Jesus?  For Jesus, kingship is not all about honor, fame, glory, and wealth, but it is all about service with compassion, true charity, and humility.  “Whatever you did for one of the least brothers of mine, you did for me,” and this is what true kingship means for Jesus.  To be a king means to be the “servant of all”, i.e. the readiness and willingness to serve the needs of the least ones.  It is also part of being sensitive to the needs of those who are longing for love and mercy.

The letter of Paul to the Philippians clearly manifested an example on how Jesus showed the word kingship to us: “Jesus did not deem equality to God which something to be grasp at.  Rather, He emptied himself and took the form of a slave to be in the likeness of men”.  This manifestation comes from the letter of Paul to the Philippians conveyed to us the message that the kingship of Jesus is not something to be compared with the world’s definition about it.  Rather, it is a challenge and an invitation for all of us that speaking for greatness in life is not all about power-grabbing, but it is all about humbling and committing ourselves to God’s invitation that all of us must cater the needs of the least ones of our day to day living which also our brothers and sisters in faith.  To be a king is not all about power and authority, but it is all about charity and compassion.

Lastly, a king that Jesus portrayed to us is not about siting on a throne but a king who wants to serve the flock of sheep as a shepherd.

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