31st December 2016

Two Words Concerning Time

“The time has now come, God’s reign is near; repent and believe the gospel.”
Mark 1:15 (NLT)

The ancient Greeks had two words for time: Chronos and Kairos. The difference between them is important to remember.

Chronos refers to the time on a clock or a sundial, in other words, an hour of the day. You will be aware that the New Testament talks about things like the second watch, or the third hour.

The other kind of time, Kairos, refers to a sense of destiny: the hour, the time, the moment of truth; Jesus often spoke of time this way—“the time is coming when” or “the hour has come.” This word for time has a special urgency. Jesus realised that he was fulfilling a special purpose here on earth, completing the work that his Father had given him to do. This special commission would have a time scale and you probably remember what he once said to his brothers who were urging him to go to Jerusalem and show people his miracles to prove who he was. He replied, “Now is not the right time (Kairos), for me to go.” (John 7:1-7). Yet the right time would come, and did!

The events of our salvation are not accidental or random; they were part of a great plan formulated before the universe began: “He paid for you with the precious blood of Christ, the sinless, spotless Lamb of God. God chose him for this purpose long before the world began, but now in these final days, he was sent to the earth for all to see. And he did this for you” (1 Peter 1:19-20).

Our lives here on planet earth are dominated by chronos. We run our lives by diary and clock, and are engaged in a perpetual and losing battle against time because there’s never enough! Perhaps we should seek rather to be committed to kairos, to understanding and sharing in the greater purpose of God. This is an unhurried thing, reliable and trustworthy. The psalmist kind of summed it up whenever he wrote: “I waited patiently for the Lord to help me, and he turned to me and heard my cry” (Psalm 40:1).

Perhaps there is something that we are waiting for from the Lord and he probably wants to give us it, but not yet. The hour has not come—the kairos has not arrived. Hang in there—in his time, and only in his time, all will be well!

Help us to wait on you, Father, for your Kairos time in our lives.

Study by Cliff Neill


About the Author: cliffneill
Cliff Neill is an Elder in Grace Communion Church Luton.

Local Congregation:
Grace Communion Church Luton
Farley Hill Methodist Church
North Drift Way
Farley Hill

Meeting Time:
Saturday 10:30am

Local Congregational Contact:
Harry Sullivan
Phone: 01908-582222
Email: harry_sullivan@wcg.org.uk

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