“Then Jesus said to them, ‘My time has not yet come, but your time is always ready. The world cannot hate you, but it hates Me because I testify of it that its works are evil. You go up to this feast. I am not yet going up to this feast, for My time has not yet fully come.’ ” John 7:6–8
There were three holy days that God had commanded the Jews to keep each year: the first was the Passover, followed by the feast of unleavened bread, which was in the spring of the year, the second came seven weeks later and in Jesus’ day was called Pentecost, the third was the Day of Atonement, which was followed by the feast of Tabernacles, and this came in the autumn of the year.
The apostle John records that Jesus’ brothers told Jesus that he ought to go down to Jerusalem and celebrate the Feast of Tabernacles and do in Jerusalem what he’d been doing in Galilee. John tells us that at this time none of Jesus’ brothers believed that Jesus was the Messiah so it’s difficult to define what their motivation was for telling Jesus to go down. They did, however, justify their counsel by saying that no one works in secret while he’s seeking to make himself known openly. It’s almost as if they were trying to get Jesus to provoke a show down between himself and those who opposed him.
Our focus text for today is Jesus answer to them, “My time is not yet come…”
While Jesus walked this earth Satan focused his primary attention on trying to prevent Jesus from achieving his goal of winning salvation for the world. Jesus was his main target. It wouldn’t be until after Jesus had died on the cross, and in doing so winning his victory over sin and Satan, that the devil turned his warfare upon those that would carry his Gospel to the world, Jesus’ disciples.
During the years of his ministry Jesus had to be careful to not prematurely provoke the Jewish leaders into taking action to kill him. His teaching and his healing did bring out their jealousy and hatred of him but it didn’t push them to more violent action.
Throughout his ministry Jesus knew that he was following his Father’s time table and that his time had not yet come.
We, like Jesus, need to prioritize our lives to work according to our Heavenly Father’s plan and timing. Too often we rush ahead, or drag our feet, because we’re pursuing our own agenda’s and the result is that we’re not where we ought to be, doing what we ought to be doing, to most affectively accomplish the works of God.
Jesus life was tuned to listen to and follow the guidance of the Holy Spirit that was always with him. Jesus has promised that the Holy Spirit will always be with us and the Spirit will, if we’ll follow him, lead us, and all of Jesus disciples, to continue to work the works of Christ today.