GOD’S TIMING FOR THE COMING OF JESUS
By W. G. Guy
Why was Jesus born of a virgin at the time when we acknowledge? The timing was very important and had to be set as God knew things would work according to His plan.
In reading the Old Testament we see the corruption of the Hebrew priesthood is quite evident beginning with Eli and his sons, Phinehas and Hophni, as recorded in 1 Samuel. With the priests being corrupt and immoral themselves, it is no wonder that the majority of the kings of both Israel and Judea were also godless and corrupt, and worshipped false gods. There was no godly leadership to guide them in the requirements that God placed on them to be representatives of God as His people in the earth.
It was finally after God sent certain prophets among His people who were able to have a positive and godly influence on them. Even so, the prophets were not sent to the priests but to certain of the kings. It was these certain kings that the prophets spoke to that brought them to come against the pagan practices and worship of false gods, purging the land of idols, and bringing repentance …….briefly.
This corruption of the priesthood continued until the time of the oppression inflicted by the Greeks, and then by the Romans. It appears that this period of conflict led the Hebrews to return to God seeking Him for help and strength against their conquerors. It was during this time that the Maccabees led the Hebrews in revolt against their oppressors and allowed them to regain the use of their temple, restoring it and dedicating it to its rightful use. This dedication is the Jewish celebration known as Hanukah. This brings us up to the time of the New Testament.
Then we find that the condition of the priesthood in the New Testament times was just the opposite as it was during the Old Testament. The pendulum of religious piety and obedience to the commandments of God has swung to the extreme opposite side. During the New Testament times the priests were sticklers about keeping the Law and its commandments and observations. They even had competition in their fervency for the Law by a sect called the Pharisees.
Now consider what would have happened if Jesus Christ had appeared on the scene during the Old Testament with the corrupt condition of the priests. Most likely there would have been a change in the way the people lived at that time and they would have repented and may even had tried to make Jesus their King. Obviously God did not want Jesus among the Hebrews at that time because Jesus would not have been made the sacrifice for sin by being crucified on the cross for us.
God had to wait for the Hebrew priests to change and to have embraced the Law to an extreme extent before He would allow Jesus to come onto the scene. At this time the corruption that permeated the priesthood during the Old Testament was no longer present. Now there was no possibility that they would accept Jesus as their King, or even as their Messiah. Why, because He did not conform to their view of religious pretense and piety. Since Jesus did not conform to their concept of the Law, they viewed Him as an enemy and thus had to eliminate Him. This was now the proper condition upon which God could send His Son into the world in order to fulfill His planed redemption for mankind.
The proper timing for the coming of the Lord Jesus Christ to be the sacrificial Lamb of God had to be set up to accomplish His purpose. And so Jesus came in the fullness of time according to God’s sovereign plan. Thank you Father, and thank you Jesus!
This leads us to the second coming of the Lord Jesus Christ in which the proper conditions according to the plan of God have to be met. These conditions are indicated in scripture as Jesus identified them as recorded in the gospels of Matthew, Mark and Luke.
Matthew 24:37 – But as the days of Noe were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be. (See also Luke 17:26).
So what were conditions like in the days of Noah?
Genesis 6:9-11 – These are the generations of Noah: Noah was a just man and perfect in his generations, and Noah walked with God. And Noah begat three sons, Shem, Ham, and Japheth. The earth also was corrupt before God, and the earth was filled with violence.
Violence and corruption was the prevalent condition in all of mankind in the earth. This meant that those were very terrible and fearful times with no safety, no stability, no morality and no godliness. What else can we expect before the coming of the Lord Jesus Christ?
Luke 21:25-27 – And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring; men’s hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken. And then shall they see the Son of man coming in a cloud with power and great glory.
Basically conditions that shall be just before the return of Jesus Christ will be very chaotic bringing GREAT FEAR to people. The cause of the fear will not only be from natural disasters such as earthquakes, volcanoes, massive storms and extreme weather phenomena, but also from various horrible conditions imposed by wicked, ungodly leaders (politicians) as well as unbelievable demonic/Satanic forces that cannot be described here.
What Jesus described as those conditions to come we are now beginning to see at this time as Jesus predicted? Consider His reference to the restoration of Israel as a nation, and especially to Jerusalem being returned to the control of the Israelites, and no longer being trampled down by the gentiles.
Luke 21:29-32 – And he spake to them a parable; Behold the fig tree, and all the trees; when they now shoot forth, ye see and know of your own selves that summer is now nigh at hand. So likewise ye, when ye see these things come to pass, know ye that the kingdom of God is nigh at hand. Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass away, till all be fulfilled.
So how are we to cope with such conditions up until the Lord takes us out of here to be with Him?
Luke 21:34-36 – And take heed to yourselves, lest at any time your hearts be overcharged with surfeiting, and drunkenness, and cares of this life, and so that day come upon you unawares. For as a snare shall it come on all them that dwell on the face of the whole earth. Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man.
If you are truly walking with Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior you will keep your focus on Him and not on the things of the world that are going on around you; we are to be aware of conditions so we can pray, but not be focused on them. Like Peter, when got out of the boat and walked on the water toward Jesus until he got his eyes off of Jesus. Then he saw the winds and waves around him and began to sink. Peter’s faith shifted from Jesus to the conditions surrounding him – we are not to allow this to happen to us!
Matthew 14:28-30 – And Peter answered him and said, Lord, if it be thou, bid me come unto thee on the water. And he said, Come. And when Peter was come down out of the ship, he walked on the water, to go to Jesus. But when he saw the wind boisterous, he was afraid; and beginning to sink, he cried, saying, Lord, save me.
Consider that in the Bible we are instructed 365 times “to fear not”; (that is a “fear not” for every day of the year)! So keep your eyes on Jesus and your heart filled with His Word; and keep looking up!
Luke 21:28 – And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh. (Getting close, but not yet).
These are the conditions that God has set for the return of Jesus Christ. It is His desire that true believers faith and obedience in Him and in His Word will be so evident to the lost around us that they might be able to turn to accept what we already have in Jesus Christ. Selah – think on this!
Isaiah 26:3 – Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee:
because he trusteth in thee.