Happy new year! I have my new year’s resolutions written, my goals for the next 365 days. I am looking forward to being more temperate in tobacco and alcohol consumption, and more prudent in my physical fitness. I am reading books on leadership (including the Holy Bible) in order to be more just toward my children and business associates. I am planning events to train me in fortitude, to maintain my integrity in the face of opposition to my personal goals, weather it is unintentional or intentional opposition I must remain steady, I must remain regular in my path.
This post wasn’t release early, in fact it’s a little late. Some readers acquainted with less “contemporary”, dare I say “traditional” church services understand that Sunday marked the New Year. The First Sunday of Advent, which is the advent of the coming of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, marks the first day of the new Church (or liturgical) year. My goals and achievements for this year shall be in closer accord with the liturgical calendar, Christ being my strength and support.
The reading in Church, for any who missed out, is Matthew 24:36-44, which reminds us of how society will be before the coming of Christ, encouraging us to remain steadfast in Christs lessons as we await his impending return. Verse 44 is particularly ominous stating ” 44 So you also must be ready, because the Son of Man will come at an hour when you do not expect him.” (NIV)
“44 Therefore you also must be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect.” (ESV)
“44 Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh.” (KJV)
Take your pick, it’s one scripture, one meaning. What is intriguing here is the call to “be ready”. He was talking directly to his disciples, men who were more ready than any other to see the second coming of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. They had asked how to know when his coming was impending, and he said that it will be like the times of Noah, and consider that of all men in Noah’s time, he was ready. It was because he was ready that G-d revealed Himself to him, and empowered him to build an ark for the salvation of the other who were ready, namely his family. How was it that he was ready? Firstly, he believed in G-d and sought after him. He followed Him in profound ways. From his story we derive the so called Noachide laws, which Jewish society states makes a Non-Jewish man righteous if he should follow them. They are these:
- Do not deny God.
- Do not blaspheme God.
- Do not murder.
- Do not engage in illicit sexual relations.
- Do not steal.
- Do not eat from a live animal.
- Establish courts/legal system to ensure obedience to the law.
As Christian Knights, we can be ready in these ways:
1.Do not deny Jesus Christ, or blaspheme Him. G-d, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, is an entity of love, and it diminishes the image of love to the public when His name is used in the negative form.
2. Hate is as good as Murder. If the person is “dead to me”, when they previously were not, then I have murdered them psychologically. They are a lost cause, they are incapable of communication, but inasmuch as Christ sought you — a person dead to Him — and showed you love to bring you back to life, so should we shower resurrect those “dead” to us through forgiveness, even reaching forth our hands to lift them up as Christ did to Lazarus, and even Thomas.
3. On sexual relations, I will let each man’s conscience dictate.
4. Do not steal. Do not take what is not yours, be it goods, people, hope and peace of mind.
5. Courts of law are the foundation of a civil society. Be active in your legal system, this includes your political system, as that is the process by which laws are made. Frustrated with how the recent election went down? Are you a card carrying, meeting attending member of your chosen political party? Two hours per month, and you could change the course of the political current in your county, you could be the vote that selects candidates to run for office. Get active, and call others to be active, even (or should I say: especially) if they disagree with you! Your good friend attending meetings of a rival political party might be what your city/county/state needs. I currently disagree with Brother Albert Pike on many accounts, but his call for civic action of the charitable brothers of our fraternity encouraged many to spread the cement of brotherly love through our society in incredible ways during the early part of the 20th century.
It is a new year starting yesterday, and I for one am not willing to wait 34 more days to change things in my life, or my society. I am here to prepare for Christ.
Hold fast to faith, uplift all others in hope, be charitable in grace.