Monday, October 29, 2007

Your Time Has Come (My Hour Has Not Yet Come Pt 2)

In my last post, I delved into the meaning of the Lord’s statement “My hour has not yet come,” exploring the connection to the meaning of the miracle in John 2. I desire to study John’s Gospel both orderly & topically, therefore I desire to ponder further the fact that God has an appointed time for everything to occur.

Eccl. 3:1 To everything there is a season, a time for every purpose under heaven:

Mark 1:14b-15 …Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God, saying, "The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand! Repent, and believe in the gospel."

Mark 13:31-37 "Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will by no means pass away. But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. Take heed, watch and pray; for you do not know when the time is. It is like a man going to a far country, who left his house and gave authority to his servants, and to each his work, and commanded the doorkeeper to watch. Watch therefore, for you do not know when the master of the house is coming-in the evening, at midnight, at the crowing of the rooster, or in the morning lest, coming suddenly, he find you sleeping. And what I say to you, I say to all: Watch!" (& take heed)

Rom. 13:11-12 Knowing the time, that it is time for you to awake out of sleep, for salvation is now nearer to us than when we first believed. The night is far gone, and the day is near. Let’s therefore throw off the works of darkness, and let’s put on the armor of light.

John 7:2-5 Now the Jews' Feast of Tabernacles was at hand. His brothers therefore said to Him, "Depart from here and go into Judea, that Your disciples also may see the works that You are doing. For no one does anything in secret while he himself seeks to be known openly. If You do these things, show Yourself to the world" For even His brothers did not believe in Him.

Jesus fleshly brothers demonstrate the fleshly nature of unbelief

John 7:6 Then Jesus said to them, "My time has not yet come, but your time is always opportune.”

The time had not yet come for Jesus to go to Jerusalem & take up His cross, but He’s declaring here that His brothers’ time was “always opportune.” Opportune for what? For a trip into Jerusalem? No, Jesus is instead calling them to do as He states in Matt. 16:24-“If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me.” The denial of our own depraved will & the reception of His perfect will is what it means to “take up (our) cross.” (Jesus’ cross is the cause of our salvation; this cross is the effect of our salvation.). Jesus was, in point of fact, saying thus:

My time (to take up My cross) has not yet come, but your time (to take up your cross) is always opportune.”

After we understand what Jesus meant by “My time has not yet come” (see part 1), it becomes clear what he is insinuating: that it is time for them to deny themselves & do as He was doing; testifying to the depravity of man. Jesus suffered in a small way before He suffered in a large way. As a minimum, our cross amounts to following His example in our evangelical message to the world at large. All of Christ’s sermons had a common theme that stirred animosity among the masses- He told them the ugly truth of their sin against God & the punishment that such depravity demands. Many will tell us that we should express only the “love of Jesus” when we preach, reflecting their uninformed understanding of His ministry. They think of Jesus & imagine a benign individual who only blessed in benevolence. As they say this, they prove their ignorance of the record of His sermons. I once heard an English professor at secular college tell the tale of giving her students the Sermon on the Mount as an assignment to read & write about. She was surprised that it was wholly a polemic to her students- most wrote strongly against the words of Christ, while a minority wrote strongly in favor. However, no one was neutral. Jesus was not a politician. He was not concerned with strengthening His numbers as John 6 testifies. His miracles brought thousands in (John 6:2 & 26), & His sermons turned thousands away (John 6:66). The ugly truths of sin & punishment were offensive to majority of His audience in that day & the world is no different today. It surely gave the Lord no pleasure to grieve souls in that day, & I find no joy in doing today either. Still, we are to follow Christ & preach necessary unpleasantry to the masses as the Spirit would dictate. This is our cross to bear for Him- the cross of suffering rejection for the sake of the Gospel.

John 7:7 “The world cannot hate you, but it hates Me because I testify of it that its works are evil.”

The world could not hate them because they were not yet following Him in deed & testifying of the base nature of man. For us to preach the grace of Christ, we must first convey the depravity of man, so man could perceive the depth & necessity of Christ’s grace.

John 7:8 "You go up to this feast. I am not yet going up to this feast, for My time has not yet fully come.”

There are other appointed times in God’s Kingdom as well.

Matt. 8:28-29 When He had come to the other side, to the country of the Gergesenes, there met Him two demon-possessed men, coming out of the tombs, exceedingly fierce, so that no one could pass that way. And suddenly they cried out, saying, "What have we to do with You, Jesus, You Son of God? Have You come here to torment us before the time?"

The demons have an appointed time to suffer their punishment.

Rev. 14:6-7 Then I saw another angel flying in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach to those who dwell on the earth-to every nation, tribe, tongue, and people saying with a loud voice, "Fear God and give glory to Him, for the hour of His judgment has come; and worship Him who made heaven and earth, the sea and springs of water."

Christ will have an hour of judgment. Perhaps the demons in Mark 8 are referencing this same hour.

Luke 13:35 "See! Your house is left to you desolate; and assuredly, I say to you, you shall not see Me until the time comes when you say: 'Blessed is He (Jesus) who comes in the name of the Lord!'” (this last part is a statement of worship)

We are desolate & without hope until the point in time we recognize & worship the Lord Jesus Christ

John 4:20-24 "Our fathers worshiped on this mountain and you Jews say that in Jerusalem is the place where one ought to worship." Jesus said to her, "Woman, believe Me, the hour is coming when you will worship the Father neither on this mountain, nor in Jerusalem. You Samaritans worship what you do not know; we worship what we do know, for salvation is of the Jews. But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for the Father is seeking such to worship Him. God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.

The Father desires true worship- that based in spirit & truth; worship founded upon the fleshly nature &/ or the fabricated falsehoods of our own intellect are as without meaning as “dust in the wind.”

Ecc. 3:1-2 To everything there is a season, A time for every purpose under heaven:
A time to be born, And a time to die; A time to plant, And a time to harvest that which is planted.

There was, is, or will be:

A time for birth -for us (Ecc. 3:2) & the Christ (Gal. 4:4)
A time for death -for us (Heb. 9:27) & the Christ (John 17:1)
A time for spiritual re-birth -the planting of His seed within us unto new life (Matt 13)
A time for the harvest -the celebration of this new life as the Lord receives His own unto Himself

Mark 4:28-29 "For the earth yields crops by itself: first the blade, then the ear, after that the full corn in the ear. But when the grain ripens, immediately he puts in the sickle, because the harvest time has come."

May we continue to “ripen” as the harvest time approaches.

Rev. 14:14-16 Then I looked, and behold, a white cloud, and on the cloud sat One like the Son of Man, having on His head a golden crown, and in His hand a sharp sickle. (Jesus) And another angel came out of the temple, crying with a loud voice to Him who sat on the cloud, "Thrust in Your sickle and reap, for the time has come for You to reap, for the harvest of the earth is ripe." So He (Jesus) who sat on the cloud, thrust in His sickle on the earth, and the earth was reaped.

The harvest of those who truly accept & worship Jesus Christ in spirit & in truth.

Rev. 14:17-20 Then an angel came out of the temple which is in heaven, he also having a sharp sickle. And another angel came out from the altar, who had power over fire, and he cried with a loud cry to him who had the sharp sickle, saying, "Thrust in your sharp sickle and gather the clusters of the vine of the earth, for her grapes are fully ripe." So the angel thrust his sickle into the earth and gathered the vine of the earth, and threw it into the great winepress of the wrath of God. And the winepress was trampled outside the city, and blood came out of the winepress, up to the horses' bridles, for a distance of two-hundred miles.

The harvest of those who do not accept & worship Jesus Christ in spirit & in truth.

1 Tim. 2:5-6 For there is one God and one Mediator between God and men, the Man Christ Jesus, who gave Himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

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