Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Martin Luther King, Jesus Christ, and the Dream

This is my planned communion meditation for the Contact Church on Sunday, January 17, 2010.

Nearly 50 years ago, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. spoke these words:

"I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: 'We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal.'

"I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia, the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit down together at the table of brotherhood...

"I have a dream that one Alabama little black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls as sisters and brothers."

Nearly 2000 years ago, Jesus Christ spoke these words:

"All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations..." (Matthew 28:18-19).

When Christ told his apostles to "make disciples of all nations," he was instructing them to welcome people from all ethnic groups into his band of disciples. In fact, the original Greek word for nations could be translated ethnic groups.

Before his death and resurrection, Jesus had said, "And I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all people to myself" (John 12:32). He knew that his death on the cross would bring all kinds of people--Jewish people and Gentile people-- to his side.

Jesus Christ had a dream of bringing together people from a variety of ethnic groups as brothers and sisters in his Father's family.

Tomorrow, we will celebrate the memory of Dr. King, the man who changed America with his message of racial harmony and justice.

But today, as we observe the Lord's Supper, we can look around and see the impact that Jesus Christ has had on our lives. As black people, white people, Latinos, Creeks, and Cherokees, we celebrate the memory of the man who died and was resurrected in order to reconcile us to God and to each other.

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