Summary: Have you ever stopped to consider how important timing is to everything that exists? Do you plant tomato plants in November? Outside? Do you paint the outside of your house in January? Does any sane person go swimming in the icy River in February? No? Why
The Miracle of the Moment - Galatians 4
Sermon series: the Miracle of Christmas
Scriptures: Galatians 4
(look at watch until 60 seconds have passed).
Exactly one minute has passed. Isn't that amazing? My watch tracks time. It has a second hand that moves every second. Sixty seconds moves the big hand one step forward to mark the passing of a minute. Isn't it absolutely amazing how long one minute of silence seems, but how short one minute seems when you are doing something you enjoy?
Did you know that there are only (21) days until Christmas? That means there are approximately (504) hours until we celebrate the birth of Christ. That translates into approximately (30240) minutes left to get done all the things we need to do before Christmas arrives. There are presents to purchase and wrap, parties to attend, people to visit, and we only have (30239) minutes left. So, why did you just waste one precious moment sitting there doing nothing?
I want us to recognize not only the significance of one moment in time but also of the strategic nature of those moments. We would refer to the strategic nature of time as timing.
Have you ever stopped to consider how important timing is to everything that exists? Do you plant tomato plants in November? Outside? Do you paint the outside of your house in January? Does any sane person go swimming in the icy River in February? No? Why not? It's not the right time! There is a right time for such activities. I think we would all agree that December is not the best time to try starting a diet, right?
Think about the importance of timing in sports. If the timing is off, the quarterback won't connect with his receiver for a completion. It doesn't take a minute to throw off the timing in football. If the timing is off the basketball player will arrive at the spot before the ball or after the ball is already passed. Think about the importance of timing for our daily lives. If you have ever missed a bus because you arrived one minute after boarding you know the importance of timing. You are delayed at work, but because of the delay you missed a major accident on the interstate. If you are the parent of a preschooler, you know that if you turn your head for one minute, that child can be long gone and into trouble.
Does one minute make a difference? Just ask those who made it out of the Twin Towers minutes before they collapsed. One moment, one sixty-second interval of time, placed in just the right location can make all the difference in the world.
It is so easy to get all wrapped up in the activity of the season that we miss the miracle of the birth of Jesus Christ. This what the Christmas season is all about; let's spend some moments reflecting on the significance of Christ's birth.
Galatians 4:4 is an incredible verse. It says, "When the time came to completion, God sent His Son, born of a woman, born under the law" (HCSB) Did you hear that? God's Word says, "When the time came . . . " At just the right time God sent His Son. That represents the miracle of the moment, just the right moment.
I. He came at the right moment
The Bible says, "When the time came to completion, God sent His Son . . . " But the reality is, most people missed the miracle of the moment. Most people did not recognize the significance of Christ's birth at the time. People were much to busy to pay any attention to the young girl giving birth to her first child out in a stable there in Bethlehem.
At just the right time in history Jesus was born. The coming of Christ into the world was not a matter of chance or coincidence. His coming was part of God's divine plan established before the foundation of the world. "Historians tell us that the Roman world was in great expectation, waiting for a deliverer, at the time Jesus was born. The old religions were dying. The old philosophies were empty and powerless to change men's lives. Strange new mystery religions were invading the empire. Religious bankruptcy and spiritual hunger were everywhere. God was preparing the world for the arrival of His Son." (Warren Wiersbe, Be Free, p. 90)
From an historical perspective, the Roman Empire had helped prepare the world for the birth of Jesus. The Romans had constructed roads that connected city to city, making travel easier. All roads ultimately led to Rome. The world was at peace under Roman rule. Roman laws protected the citizens and Roman soldiers guarded the peace. Thanks to both the Greek and Roman conquests, Latin and Greek were known across the empire making communication possible with many from all over the world. The Old Testament prophecies concerning the coming of the Messiah were completed. At just the right time God sent His Son!