Jesus in Relation to Time
John 7:6
Then Jesus said to them, My time is not yet come: but your time is always ready.

Notice -

I. THE TIME OF JESUS. "My time is not yet come." His time to go up to the feast, or his time to manifest himself. We have here:

1. Jesus as the Subject of time. During his earthly career he was the Subject of time, and dependent upon it. He who was before and really above time was now its Subject. As such:

(1) He had regard to its events; what were taking place in the social and religious world around him, their bearings upon each other, and especially upon his movements and actions, and the bearings of his movements upon the events of the time.

(2) He had regard to the character of his time; to the men who acted in it - men of religious and social authority and power - to their principles and attitude towards him and the great mission of his life.

(3) He shaped his course accordingly. He had a certain amount of time to live and do his work. He could escape death if he wished; but could not have escaped death and perform the mission of his life. He might have shortened his days, and frustrated their end by indiscreetly rushing into the teeth of danger; but as a Subject of time he had due regard to current events and public feelings in relation to him, so that he acted with perfect wisdom and discretion.

2. Jesus as the Manager of time.

(1) To him time was very precious. His time was very short, and he had an immense work to do. Never was so little time given for such a great work. Every moment was an age, and ages were compressed into a moment. He made the best of time. Every moment was infinitely precious.

(2) He had a special time forevery work. He never performed a single miracle nor preached a single discourse at random. There was perfect adaptation and correspondence between his actions and the time. They fitted in with the natural sequence of events, and with the state of thoughts and feelings. They could not be performed at any other time with the same results. They were like the growth of spring and the ripe fulness of harvest.

(3) He had some special work forevery portion of time, so that every hour was well occupied and every minute well spent. He had a season foreverything, and everything was in its season.

(4) The exact time for all his movements was well known to him. He knew when it had not and when it had come, so that he was never too soon nor too late. He could not be induced to move by the solicitations of friends before his time; neither could he be stopped, nor be driven from the scene of duty, when his time had arrived. Punctuality was one of his characteristics. He was at every station and every duty in due time, and not before. He was never waiting, and no one had to wait for him. He was bound to time, and time was bound to him. He was both its Subject and its King.

II. THE TIME OF HIS BRETHREN. Their time and his differed materially.

1. Their time was always ready. This was true with regard to going up to the feast, and also to the manifestation of Christ according to their ideas. They were ever ready and anxious for this. But Christ's time was not yet come. Man's time is often before that of God. His ideas are more limited. God's thoughts and plans move in an infinite circle, and take a longer time to be accomplished. Man's time is often after that of God. Now is God's accepted time to repent and believe. It is at some more convenient season often with man.

2. Their time was by self; his by the general good. Their notions were carnal and selfish, and were inspired in all their movements by principles of self-interest; but Christ's notions were spiritual and Divine, and he was ever inspired in all his movements by Divine and benevolent principles - the glory of God and the spiritual redemption of the human family. There is a vast difference between the time of selfishness and that of self-sacrificing love.

3. Their time was by the present; his was by the future as well. They were prompted by present advantage, by considerations which only embraced the limited period of their own life; but Jesus was prompted by future advantages, and by considerations which embraced endless futurity. Every step he gave was given with regard to all future ages. His time was regulated by eternity, and the eternity of myriads depended on his time.

4. Their time was by earth; his was by heaven. Theirs was by the material sun; his was by the eternal throne. Their principles were in perfect accord with those of the world, and their notions of the Messiah were those of the nation at large. So that they could move with perfect safety whenever they liked, they were in no danger. But the principles of Jesus were in perfect accord with those of God - they were holiness, spirituality, benevolence, self-sacrifice, and mercy, and thus in direct antagonism to the world; so that an unwise move might result in an untimely and fatal collision.

5. Their time was by unbelief; his was by faith. We are told that his brothers did not really believe on him. And unbelief is ever impatient, commanding, and always ready for some carnal demonstration and material sign. Faith is patient, submissive, and ever grateful for a vision when it comes; but if it comes not at the time and in the way expected it waits and trusts and obeys. Jesus was the Messiah and the Saviour of faith. He revealed himself to faith, and faith is the only power on earth which could see, comprehend, and appreciate his real character and his Divine mission; consequently all his movements, although not regardless of unbelief as precautionary, yet were directly made in the interest of faith. When faith is ready, he will be at the feast, and will manifest himself at any risk.


1. We are in as much danger often from mistaken friends as from open foes. Jesus was so now from his brethren and the multitude; they wished to make him King.

2. A word or a deed in season is much more effective than otherwise. Christ's words and deeds were ever seasonable. God has his set time for punishment and salvation.

3. In order that our time should correspond with that of Jesus, let us believe on him. If we wish to have his company to the feast, let us exercise implicit trust in him.

4. If we wish to make the most of time, let us follow Jesus in watching the best season foreverything. Random shots seldom kill anything. We should not merely be diligent, but take aim. - B.T.

Parallel Verses
KJV: Then Jesus said unto them, My time is not yet come: but your time is alway ready.

WEB: Jesus therefore said to them, "My time has not yet come, but your time is always ready.

Brethren, But not Believers
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