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Spoiler Alert (Cox Chapel)

Nov 26, 2017 - Rev. Kevin Sinclair

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How do you feel about surprises? We generally enjoy surprises in a good story, and we hate when someone spoils the ending of a movie or a book. However, in life, we don’t want surprises – we spend a lot of energy to avoid any unwanted surprises in our finances or our career.

In Matthew 25, Jesus has told three parables about avoiding wasting our time, talents, and life as we await the coming Kingdom of God. In today’s parable, Jesus jumps ahead and spoils the end of the story by telling the audience that a life of greed and selfishness that ignores “the least of these” will end in an eternal fire. This is not a story that we often want to talk about with its hellfire, demons, and death. Too often we think that the lesson is simply that believing the right thing will prove us faithful.

However, a key point to this parable is that God always has a surprise ending for us. What is heaven for some people may be hell for others. C.S. Lewis writes in his Chronicles of Narnia series that the warm light of heaven was a hell of blinding heat for those who lived their lives in greed, hatred, and violence.

Christians often spend a lot of energy to figure out the ending – Who is right or wrong? Who will be in or out of the Kingdom of God? This parable reminds us that predicting the ending is not our job, because God always gives us a surprise ending. Instead, we are to live a life of love and compassion, trusting in Christ the King to establish God’s Kingdom.

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