DayBreaks for 3/22/17: The Time Has Come
NOTE: Galen is traveling this week. This week’s DayBreaks will be from the May 2007 archives.
John 17:1 – After Jesus said this, he looked toward heaven and prayed: “Father, the time has come. Glorify your Son, that your Son may glorify you.
“The time has come.”
These words should haunt us, coming as they do from Jesus’ lips. John, and the other gospels writers have taken us on an amazing journey of discovery of the Son of God. His power has wowed us. His love has stunned and surprised us. His tenderness has given us hope. And now, can’t you hear the weariness in his voice?
How we view the arrival of something depends on what we anticipate that “something” will be like: good or bad, blessing or trouble, peace or distress. I hate it when the appointment comes when I’m supposed to go to the dentist. I’ve taken others to the hospital for major surgery, and the dread is palpable as we travel in the car. We hate the moment when we are due to pile into the car for a trip to the funeral parlor for a service for a loved one who has died. On the other hand, we rejoice when the time has come to leave for the airport to pick up your spouse or children or grandchildren whom you haven’t seen for a long time, or to go to Disneyland or for a much needed and long anticipated 3-day fishing retreat away from the noise and troubles of the world. In either case, the anticipation can be excruciating.
Either the sadness and dread can drive us into the ground, or the joy we anticipate gives us the butterflies in our stomachs that makes it hard to keep our feet on the ground when we walk. In many cases, we don’t know what to expect – and the anticipation, the unknowingness involved – makes us nervous and anxious, hopeful yet not too hopeful lest we should be disappointed.
The time has come. With Jesus, it wasn’t a question of anticipation for he knew fully what to expect. He had known all his life – he knew why he’d come to this earth. Every event of his life had led to this tipping point, this fulcrum. And when the time comes, what does Jesus do? He prays. How did he feel about this “time” which had come? We see mixed emotions:
FIRST: In the garden we see his human side, struggling and fearful of the great anguish and suffering that lay ahead, begging with the Father that this cup, and this time, could pass. And who can blame him? Think of your own most terrifying and dark moment – didn’t you cry out for it to pass? Didn’t you cry out for God to take it away? Jesus was as human as we are. He had all the same feelings as we do. His nerves fired pain impulses just every bit as exquisitely and perfectly as those of any other human being. He made no exceptions for himself when it came to being able to identify with us in our humanity, he permitted himself no indulgences or luxuries to bypass human suffering.
SECOND: In Hebrews 12:2, and here, we see something about how the Divine side of Jesus dealt with this time. He was God – every bit as much God as he was human. As God, he could see the future outcome of events and happenings, and he could foresee the joy at the end of this “time” which had come. And that joy was your face and my face. It was being able to see us eternally before the throne of God in heaven in His Presence, and knowing that it was because of this “time which has come” that it would be made possible. That joy, of seeing his brothers and sisters redeemed from the pit of hell and cleansed from the stench of sin, that gave Christ the power to move into this time which has come, and pray, Glorify Your Son, that Your Son may glorify You.
The time has come…what does that mean for you and I? It means the time has come for us to be done with our past lives of sin and rebellion, to put our faithlessness and infidelity to God in the past. The time has come for us to walk by faith, not by sight. The time has come for us to take up our cross and follow him. The time has come for the church to rise up in the power of the Spirit and speak truth into the world once again. And ultimately, the time will come for us to face our own death and destiny. Jesus had prepared himself along the way for the moment when his time would come. Have you?
PRAYER: For Jesus’ resolve in the hour of his trial, Father, we are eternally grateful. For strength for our own time which has come, we beseech Thee. For the courage to speak truth into the world and the lives of those around us, we plead. For Your mercies, which are new every morning, we give You praise. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Copyright 2017 by Galen Dalrymple.