SERMON TITLE: “The Time Has Come”
SERMON TEXT: Luke 2:21-40 (also read Galatians 4:4-7)
PREACHER: Rev. Kim James
OCCASION: December 31, 2017, at First UMC
On Wednesday morning, I noticed that my watch had stopped. So, later that day, I took it to a repair shop and got a new battery installed. While they were replacing the battery, they cleaned my watchband and shined it up. So now, my favorite timepiece is all ready to count down the minutes to the New Year.
That’s what we’ll all be doing tonight, right? Those of us who can stay awake that late, at least! We’ll be watching the clock to see the time of one year passing into the next. If we’re watching TV in the hours before the big ball drops in Times Square, we’ll likely hear and see all kinds of reviews of 2017. If it’s a typical New Year’s Eve, time will seem to flash before our eyes as we hear about people and events that were significant in the past 12 months. Then, I suspect, we’ll also be given a preview of 2018, as various pundits, scholars, musicians, philosophers, politicians, scientists, sports commentators, and pop culture gurus all make their predictions of what will come in the time ahead.
Even though we who are alive on this final day of 2017 are probably more obsessed with time than any humans who ever lived, concern about time isn’t unique to us. Just look at the Bible. What did our reading from Galatians 4 say? “When the fullness of time had come, God sent his Son.” Even God was concerned with time. And our Gospel reading from Luke 2 tells about two important times for the newborn baby Jesus. This morning I’d like to look at those times which had come back then, and also at the time which has come to us today.