Peter F. Drucker rightly noted that “Time is the scarcest resource and unless it is managed nothing else can be managed.” Christian stewardship of time, however, is more than mere “time management.” To redeem the time, we need richer language than that. We need biblical language that reflects the God who grants us life hour by hour and minute by minute.
What is this concept of time to us here in this world? As with God, did the element of time exist forever? What has always been sought; when and where was time created? We know that time was before us; before humankind time already was. We learn of time from the fifth verse of Genesis 1; when God himself relates to us that the evening and the morning was “one day.”
In this paper, I will not defend that God created time; it shall be granted that “time” was created by God. I shall here also go one step further in stating that not only did God create “time,” but that he is also the manager of time.
The apostle Paul tells us in Galatians 4, “But when the set time had fully come, God sent His Son, born of a woman, born under the law.” In God’s hands, time, I conclude, is but putty; moldable to whatever he wills.
We are told in Acts 17:26 that, “From one man he made all the nations, that they should inhabit the whole earth; and he marked out their appointed times in history and the boundaries of their lands.”
It is evident that humankind has absolutely no control of time. Man was not in the beginning as it was. We as mere humans can only theorize and contemplate its demise, as we elude to its passing and past.
It is our God that appoints the right “time” for every event he is creating. Paul wrote in the fifth chapter of Romans, “You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly.” Does the past, present, and future mean something to God?
While this element of time is one created by God, man has sought to control it by virtue of the many ways we have endeavored to measure it and make it meaningful to the human race.
Speaking to Philip in verse 9 of the fourteenth chapter of John, Jesus says, “Don’t you know me, Philip, even after I have been among you such a long time? Anyone who has seen me has seen the father. How can you say, ‘Show us the Father’?” It appears in this verse that Jesus, as he is with the Father, considers the time he has been with them, “such a long time.” Could this indeed be a hint at how God sees time?
For God, is the past truly the past? Is there a present for God? While Philosophically there are a number of different theories as to what “time” is, I will strive in this paper to only focus on what we can do with this thing, we call time, that God created.
For us, time is a gift from God. We must however be cautious, for time can turn against us just as easily we can say, “time is on our side.” But is it? Has time ever been on our side?
While we cannot even conceptualize molding the putty of time as God does, we certainly can become better stewards of it, than we have previously been. We can do this by among other ways, honoring the appointed times prescribed by God.
We have spent so much of our time dishonoring God, that instead of using this gift from God, we have squandered it away to our own demise. God did indeed prescribe points in time for us.
In Leviticus 23:1, God gives us appointed times. He gives us time to work and he gives us time to rest. So not only did God create this world and each of us, but he manages it as well. This is further proof that God did not merely create us and then leave us to our own, as many would declare.
Not only did God create time from nothing, he appointed times, and daily manages time as a gift to us. Ecclesiastes 1 says, “For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven…” Everyday God gives us the Sun; that we may witness its rise and fall.
Genesis 1 again shows us this gift. For in verse 14, God says, “Let there be lights in the expanse of the heavens to separate the days from the night, and let them be for signs and for seasons and for days and years.
Here is more proof that God invented this thing we call time. Not only that, he manages it for us. He breaks it down into segments, such as days and years. Humankind has not only run away from God’s appointed times, he does everything possible to change it; to harness it and mold it for his own purposes.
Where we now find ourselves in the bigger scheme of things, for better or for worse, we have no one to blame but ourselves. We are the ones who have ignored and turned a blind eye to God’s management of time.
Many of us spend hours upon hours throughout our lives asking things of God, while at the same time we dishonor him in nearly everything we do; or don’t do.
Why am I speaking so much to time? God has appointed a time for all that we should do. We need to do is start honoring God; we need to honor God’s appointed times. Imagine where we all would be today; imagine how better off we would all be today, if we honored these appointed times instead of ignoring them.
The most prominent time many of us ignore is the Sabbath; for some Saturday and for some of us is celebrated on Sunday. There was a time, even here in North America when the Sabbath was generally enjoyed. I remember the days when stores were closed on Sundays. If you wanted to get gas for your car, you had better filler her up on Saturday.
Yes, there really was a time when we honored God and His appointed time. Unfortunately, it is nothing more than financial greed that forces many to turn away from God. That’s right many employers force their employees to work on Sundays. And yes, people have to eat; they have to provide for their families, so they work on Sunday whether they like it or not.
Stay tuned for the continuation of this article.
©2017 Clayton Moore