Twenty-ninth Sunday in Ordinary Time
“Unity in diversity” is perhaps the most descriptive word for European Christian civilization, and it finds its roots in the Christian revelation of the Blessed Trinity: One God, Three Persons. Unity, diversity. So Christianity is not about a sort of “cosmic meltdown” in which all being disappears before a tyrant god. The Christian God is infinitely careful, and respectful of the freedom of His creatures.
And this applies to the (relative) freedom of this world, a world with various authorities who have their authority from God. If at times they do stand in the place of God, they just as certainly are not God – and have their authority from Him. Still, it is a real authority for all that. And so it is with governments and governing of all sorts, from the home to the imperial palace. The Lord Jesus Himself, Son of God, submitted to the authority of His earthly parents, and obeyed and urged obedience to the religious and civil leaders of His time. But – He also freely criticized the leadership when they needed it, speaking the word of God to the various Caesars of His world, speaking it fearlessly.
All things belong to God, but He has chosen to delegate authority in various degrees throughout His Creation. Let us be rooted and anchored in the “things of God” and render our deepest love and allegiance to Him. And let us obey His will in living as ordered members of an ordered universe, rendering to Caesar that bit of obedience which this world can claim of us. Obedient to earthly authorities, but not uncritical – as was the Master.