The Right Time Has Come by Tony Nester

The Right Time Has Come
Tony Nester
Mark 1:9-15

What are you waiting for?

I know there are many times when we have to patiently
wait for better things to come along in life, but
waiting for God's grace isn't one of them.

Jesus insisted that God's grace is staring us in face
if only we'll see it, accept it, and let it shape our
lives.

"The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God has
come near; repent, and believe in the good news."

This is Mark's one sentence summary of Jesus' entire
teaching ministry. Here's what Jesus' message comes
down to in its simplest form:

* The time is fulfilled - God is on the move and has
put in place all that is needed for his saving work in
our world.

* The Kingdom of God has come near - the presence and
power of God's kingly authority is now with us.

* Repent - turn toward what God is offering you.

* Believe in the good news - don't wait any longer to
entrust your life to the grace of God.

Jesus came to a people who had grown used to believing
that they would have to wait, and wait, and wait still
longer for God to come to them. It had been some 587
years since the city of Jerusalem had fallen to the
invading Babylonian army and the nation of Israel
removed from the face of the earth. That means 587
years of suffering and waiting for God to act -
generation after generation after generation. It's no
wonder that many of them grew accustomed to waiting
and doubted that they would ever see a powerful
movement of God in their lifetime.

Then John the Baptist came who insisted that soon God
would act. He challenged people to be baptized in an
act of repentance to prepare them for the One who was
coming as God's Messiah.

And after John's ministry ended with his imprisonment
by King Herod, Jesus began his ministry. And his
message was there was no need to wait any longer. God
had taken care of everything. There were no missing
pieces to the plan. All was set. The power of God
was present. The mercy of God was available. The
time was fulfilled. The Kingdom was at hand. This
was not the time to wait. It was time to act.
"Repent, and believe the good news."

I suspect that there are some of you here who are
waiting for a better time to give yourself over to
God. That is a mistake. Ever since Jesus there is no
better time to say "yes" to God. Jesus fulfilled the
time. Jesus brought the Kingdom near. Jesus has made
every moment since his death and resurrection the
right time for getting right with God. What are you
waiting for?

Sometimes we think that a better time will come along
for getting serious with God. Mostly we think this
way when we think of God as a big inconvenience in our
life. We're doing fine with our lives. We're making
good progress toward our goals. We're developing o ...


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