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  • July 11, 2014 - Reflections

    By Jean S. Horner
    The other day while walking down a corridor in a public building, I saw what appeared to be someone walking toward me. On coming closer, I found it was my own reflection in a huge mirror. For a moment it frightened me. Somehow a full-length reflection of one’s self is a startling thing. ...

Come! The Savior’s Invitation

By George D. McKinney Jr.
Mar. 31, 2013

Only one week before His death, Jesus had been greeted by crowds of worshippers at a triumphant entry into Jerusalem. It was Palm Sunday. A King came riding on a donkey.

“Hosanna” and “Hail to the King” rang out across the Judean hills, but Jesus would not seize the moment. He rejected the offer to be made a political king. He knew who He was.

“My kingdom is not of this world,” Jesus declared. “I just want to rule in your hearts with love, truth, mercy and peace. My kingdom is neither headquartered in Rome nor Jerusalem. My kingdom is within you.”

Since neither Rome nor Jerusalem could seduce Jesus, they formed an unholy alliance under Satan’s power and tried to destroy Him.

The scene was set for the final drama. Judas betrayed Jesus. The disciples deserted Him. Peter denied Him. The Roman soldiers captured Him.

Jesus was spat on. He was beaten. He was mocked. He was crowned with a thorny crown.

Pilate examined Jesus and declared, “I find no fault in Him.”

He was tried illegally at night and tried again. False witnesses were called to testify. The mob demanded death.

Jesus was made to carry His cross, and an African by the name of Simon of Cyrene helped Him with His cross.

There, on a hill called Calvary, they nailed Jesus’ hands and His feet with spikes. The cross, with His pain-riddled body, was lifted up.

They didn’t remember Him saying, “If I be lifted up, I’ll draw all men unto Me.”

Christ’s promise held true. “If you lift Me up, from that perspective I will draw black, white and brown folk. I’ll draw the educated and the illiterate. I’ll draw the little folk and the big folk. I’ll draw the politician. I’ll draw all unto Me.”

A strange physical phenomenon happened when Jesus died. There were earthquakes; rocks cracked. At noonday there was an eclipse of the sun. Darkness covered the earth.

In the temple in Jerusalem there had been a curtain separating the Holy Place from the Most Holy Place, where the High Priest could go in only once a year. When Jesus died, the curtain was rent. It was cut.

God seemed to have taken some big scissors and cut the curtain as if to say, “From now on, everybody can come into the Holy Place. Everybody can come. You don’t have to be Church of God in Christ, Assemblies of God, Baptist, Lutheran or Methodist. Just have a hungry soul. Just have faith in Him.”

I see God putting the sign over every church door: “Whosoever will, let them come. Come as you are. Wretched one, come. Sinner, come. Poor or rich, come. Come to the Living Water. Come to the Fountain of Life. Come to the wellspring of healing and reconciliation with God.”

The curtain was rent in twain, opening God’s mercy seat to all of the world. Have you found that mercy? Have you accepted the greatest invitation of all?

BISHOP GEORGE D. McKINNEY JR. is founder and senior pastor of St. Stephen’s Cathedral Church of God in Christ in San Diego.

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