Working with the Word

Focusing the Gospel

Key words and phrases:  let him save himself, save yourself, Save yourself and us, you will be with me in Paradise

To the point: If you are King … save yourself” the soldiers jeered at Jesus on the cross. So did the rulers and one criminal crucified with Jesus taunt him about saving himself. But they misunderstood what “save yourself” means. The rulers, soldiers, and one criminal thought being saved meant that Jesus should come down from the cross, avoid any more suffering, certainly avoid death. But Jesus shows us through his words to the other criminal what being saved really means: “you will be with me in Paradise.” Salvation is less a matter of being saved from, than a matter of being saved for.

Connecting the Gospel …

… to the first reading: Paul expresses in the Second Reading what we have been saved for: the inheritance of holiness, membership in the kingdom of the beloved Son, a share in Christ’s fullness, reconciliation with all things, and peace.

… to experience: What we are celebrating with this solemnity is not a style of government (earthly kings and kingdoms), but the victory of Christ over all things—even death. Christ the King makes possible among us a reign of goodness, mercy, forgiveness, justice, reconciliation, peace.


**From Saint Louis University

Kristin Clauson