when the time had come

We read in scripture that “when the set time had fully come, God sent his Son…” If you’re like me you’ll be asking why. Behind that is a probably hazy, yet definite sense of what should be. Or how a problem should be solved. There are a number of historical reasons why this time would have been opportune, or strategic in God’s work of salvation for the world. And we can gather how God had worked in preparing his people and the world for this. But we also have to acknowledge that there is much we don’t know. We do know what scripture tells us. That God was indeed on time, that in fact it was the time for God’s Son to come into the world as a full human. To be born and live and die like all the rest of us.

Scripture tells us that there is a time for everything under the sun. And how a timely word is good. We tend to either be in a hurry, or be lagging behind. We’re on our time, on our sense of what we need to do. But God’s Son was born at just the right time, God’s time. And Jesus grew up and lived on his Father’s time. Day after day. Much of his life in humble circumstances working in a trade. And a powerful, though short (by our standards) ministry, after which the time arrived for his glorification in his death and resurrection.

Jesus came and lived on God’s time. I need to do more of that. Sometimes I think I’m out of time, or that my time here little seems to matter. I’m not in sync with God’s time. Only by the Spirit can I learn more and more to walk in God’s time through Jesus. I know in my case, unlike Jesus, God will have to restore the years which the locusts have eaten. Not in ways I might imagine, but in ways only God can understand and know. And none of us knows what a day may bring forth. But we do know that God’s working in Jesus is in time. And if we’re to be part of that working, learning to live according to God’s timing will be important. Again think of the Son of God (meaning Messiah), even God the Son no less, spending nearly the first thirty years of life in relative obscurity. But then the final few years were world changing in God’s salvation working.

I need to live in God’s time in Jesus, not my own. Not the world’s time clock. If I’m to live as Jesus did, and be ready “for such a time as this.” God help us together and individually in Jesus for our part in God’s mission for the world.

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