“When the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth His Son…” Galatians 4:4 KJV
“When the fullness of the time came, God sent forth His Son…” Galatians 4:4 NASB
What was so remarkable about the particular time that the Lord Jesus was born? If you could have chosen when to come into the world, would you have chosen a time when your country was in bondage to another nation? Would you have come at a time of primitive living conditions, sanitation, medical knowledge, and technology?
A multitude of questions flood our minds. Why didn’t God send His Son immediately after the events of Genesis 3? Why the four millennia or more of waiting for the “Seed of the woman” to come? What is significant in the different epochs of time which transpired: Noah and the flood, the Patriarchs, Moses and the law; then, the captivity and return?
He Came at the “End of the Ages”
Hebrews 9:26 tells us that He appeared at the end of the ages. Age after age had rolled its course and revealed its tragic history, diagnosing, by different means, the hopeless condition of man. Human government, conscience, and law all failed to change the human heart. Each age revealed some deeper level of human sin and hopelessness. He appeared at the end of all those ages to deal with the problem which had not been addressed – human sin.
He Came in “Due Time”
Romans 5:6 pinpoints the timing of His death as being “in due time.” A crisis in God’s dealings with humanity may be signaled by this expression. Romans 5 portrays us as sinners, ungodly, and enemies of God. Ripe for the unleashing of divine judgment upon humanity, we were on the brink of destruction. As those without strength, there was nothing we could do to change the human heart or satisfy God. As sinners, we were guilty before Him; as enemies, we were at war with Him. A just God had sufficient basis to open the flood gates of judgment upon us. But in due time, at the very right time, He sent His Son and the tsunami of judgment fell upon Him.
He Came in the Fullness of the Time
Paul has been dealing with the poverty of the law to justify or to add anything to the believer’s life. The law had almost one millennium to see if it could do anything with human flesh. In the end, the bankruptcy of our flesh was displayed. All divine purpose was moving forward to the momentous event at Calvary. God’s timetable was perfect.
He came at a time of national poverty and servitude; He came to a peasant’s home and poverty; He came to, what we would label as, primitive and backward conditions of life. Yet, it was God’s time; it was the “fullness of the time.”
There will be another “time” or age known as the Millennium. How will that reveal something more of the bankruptcy of the human condition?