Summary: Series on the Book of Galatians - Part 3 of 8
Right on Time - Galatians 4:4
"But when the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law..." (Gal 4:4).
"And saying, The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye, and believe the gospel..." (Mark 1:15).
I. The law had done its educational work.
A. It had shown through the Jewish nation that men are terrible transgressors, and despite all of God’s favor and blessings, men still failed to worship God in love.
B. The world now had a picture of the depraved heart of man. (Ro.3:10-18 for a clear description of man’s sinfulness.)
II. The world was full of people spiritually starved.
A. The worship of self, pleasure, gods, philosophical ethics, all had left many empty and barren.
B. The soul was now ready to have its hunger met.
III. The world was at peace under Roman rule.
A. The world was an open door for the spread of the gospel without any restraint.
B. To some degree there was spiritual liberty under Roman rule.
IV. The world spoke Greek as a basic language, making communication possible with many from all over the world.
V. The world had a system of roads helped in a couple of ways.
A. It provided for mass travel which allowed Christian missionaries to reach the farthest parts of the earth.
B. It also brought commercial travelers to metropolitan centers where Christian believers were concentrated.
VI. THE FULNESS OF TIME HAD COME!
"But when the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law" (Gal 4:4).
"Who gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time." (1 Tim 2:6).
"But hath in due times manifested his word through preaching, which is committed unto me according to the commandment of God our Saviour" (Titus 1:3).
"For then must he often have suffered since the foundation of the world: but now once in the end of the world hath he appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself" (Heb 9:26).
Wonder of His Birth - Galatians 4:4-5.
I. When: "...the fullness of time..."
A. Not accidental.
1. Paul makes it very clear that God had an appointed time for this event.
2. There are no accidents with God, nothing just happens, but everything is according to His time table.
3. God was not premature in revealing Himself in the flesh to man some 2000 years ago! He was right on time!
B. The time was right culturally.
1. In the third century before Christ, Alexander the Great conquered the world and with it brought the Greek culture and language.
2. That Greek culture broke down barriers of nationalism so that people from one nation more easily accepted ideas of someone from another nation.
3. This meant that when Christians would travel from one country to another with the message of Christ, they were more readily accepted.
4. Another important aspect of the Greek culture was the language.
> The Greek language had become the commercial language of the world.
> It was then, as English is now, the second language spoken by all people.
> This made it possible for the Scriptures to be read and understood by all.
5. Truly when Christ was born it was the fulness of time, culturally!
C. The time was right politically.
1. During the century before Christ was born, the Romans took control of the divided territories that Alexander had conquered.
2. With Roman control came roads to connect the commercial centers.
3. With Roman law came protection for Roman citizens and freedom to move from one country to another.
4. Thus, when the Apostle Paul and others preached the gospel, they traveled on semi-paved roads with privileges never known before.
5. When Christ was born it was the fulness of time, politically!
II. How: "...God sent forth His Son, made of a woman, made under the law..."
A. Christ was made of a woman.
1. The statement confirms the gospel accounts of the virgin birth of Jesus Christ (Lk 1:35; Mt.1:20-21).
2. Christ’s birth of Mary also fulfilled the many Old Testament prophecies about how He would be born.
> (Ge. 3:15) Messiah as "the seed of the woman".
> (Is. 7:14) specifically prophesies of the virgin birth.
> As a child in human form He was born; but as a Son in the likeness of His Father He was given (Is. 9:6).
B. Christ was made under the Law.
1. His coming fulfilled the promises of the Law.
> The great hope of the Law was that the Lawgiver would come (Ge.49:10).
> Christ’s coming fulfilled this promise.
2. His coming fulfilled the precepts of the Law.