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Kingdom Timing

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Kingdom Timing

Intro - background
Jesus had just had what some might consider a fairly devastating life event. He went from having thousands of followers to just 12.
Jesus got cancelled. The haters were coming out of the woodwork and neg-ing, every tweet, every snap. There were rumors all his social accounts would be deleted and he was even getting death threats. What had he done to deserve this?
Quick recap, he had healed people, miraculously fed people, then he told them the truth.
He loved them too much to mislead them. He couldn’t stand to see them just following him around and missing the point, so he spoke truthfully, lovingly, and gracefully to them. And they hated him for it.
Do you know what that feels like? Here is what I want you to do. Turn to the person next to you and each of you take one minute to answer this question:
When have you experienced Rejection and what was Your Response?
Anyone want to share a good story?
Wanna know what Jesus did? Jesus stayed home.
John 7:1 CSB
After this, Jesus traveled in Galilee, since he did not want to travel in Judea because the Jews were trying to kill him.
Judea was the region all around Jerusalem to the south and Galilee was its own region pretty far north surrounding the sea of Galilee. Nazareth is in Galilee, Jesus is from Galilee.
Scripture tells us that Jesus was trying to avoid getting murdered.
Why? Was he afraid?
He was waiting for the right time, he was not afraid to die, he would face it willingly soon enough, but he knew it was not his time yet.
How did Jesus know it was not his time yet?
He heard it from the father. The father was speaking to him. This is a mystery of the Trinity that we don’t have time to tackle tonight, but while Jesus was here on earth he modeled for us what spending time with God looks like
This points us to the reality that

Kingdom Timing starts with prayer and waiting

Jesus didn’t rush things. He waited on God to lead him in the right time. He listened to the father, and he spent time where he grew up, not drawing attention to himself.
Kingdom timing starts with prayer and waiting, prayer and waiting. Any questions about that? I think it’s pretty self-explanatory
This leads me to the next question. Turn to someone else and take one minute each to share a story about how you responded to someone who mistreated you.
How did you respond to someone when they mistreated you?
Anyone have a good story they’d like to share?
So let’s see how Jesus responded.
The last of the harvest is finally in and everyone is going to go up to the temple and celebrate for a whole week. The whole family travels together with all the relatives in the adjoining villages. Jesus brothers’ think this would be the ideal time for Jesus to reveal himself to the nation. They want him to bring his whole crew with him and show up in Jerusalem properly and with power.

So his brothers said to him, “Leave here and go to Judea so that your disciples can see your works that you are doing. 4 For no one does anything in secret while he’s seeking public recognition. If you do these things, show yourself to the world.” 5 (For not even his brothers believed in him.)

They made fun of him. Despite his best efforts, they still didn’t get it. He wasn’t doing things for his own sake, he was following God, and God had a very specific plan for Jesus. How much Jesus knew about God’s plan and when is a matter for theological debate, but it is clear that Jesus was following orders. And God wanted him to keep a low profile until God was ready to reveal him to the world.
But his brothers saw the water turned to wine, and knew about his other miracles and they thought Jesus should make a big deal of his divinity.
But, nope, that’s not God’s plan. So they gave him grief.
But how did Jesus respond?
This is another reality about Kingdom Timing

Kingdom Timing means treating everybody right, no matter what

I would have flown off the handle and been angry, or quipped something passive aggressive. How many times did he have to explain it. From the time in the temple to now, did his family not get that he had to be doing the father’s will. What a bunch of stiff-necked idiots!
But Jesus isn’t me. He responded as he did to everyone, with grace and truth.
Your time is always, but my time is not yet.
Truthful, but gracious. Calm and kind without flying off or being sarcastic.
He treated them right.
We need to learn to respond to people with grace and truth even when they suck.
When they make fun of us, or mistreat us, we need to treat them right. Love them by telling them truth with grace
What happened next?
So Jesus told his brothers he was not going up to the festival and stayed behind. The public group left Galilee for Jerusalem. But then, something changed
John 7:10 CSB
After his brothers had gone up to the festival, then he also went up, not openly but secretly.
What’s up with that? Did Jesus lie, the perfect son of God speak dishonestly?
He told them he was not going with them, and he didn’t. He stayed behind the group. But God told him he needed to go, so he went.
Have you ever felt confused by God’s timing or plans?
I have. It’s hard to feel so confident that God has led you to do something, or go somewhere, but then things change. Was I wrong?
Well, here’s another truth about Kingdom Timing

Kingdom Timing means doing what God wants even when it doesn’t make sense

Look at the wonder of God’s plan. The people in Jerusalem were talking about Jesus. His ministry was making waves. God was working in the minds and hearts of the people. Some were doubting, many were believing, and all the people were talking about him.
Look what happens
John 7:14–16 CSB
When the festival was already half over, Jesus went up into the temple and began to teach. Then the Jews were amazed and said, “How is this man so learned, since he hasn’t been trained?” Jesus answered them, “My teaching isn’t mine but is from the one who sent me.

Kingdom Timing means doing what God wants even when it doesn’t make sense

Jesus goes into the temple and starts teaching, WITH AUTHORITY. He gives the people more of himself, more truth and more grace. He pours out all that he has. Just like on the mountainside of John 6, more than anything Jesus wants people to see him for who he really is, so that they can experience a life of fullness and joy. he does not want them to miss out on all that God has planned for them.
This is just as true today as then, people need to hear the truth that God has a plan for them, he has a purpose for them. And his plan for your life is so much better than your own. Please, please worship Jesus, please see the point of the miracles, see what they say.
So even though Jesus did not enter Jerusalem the way his brothers thought he should, God’s plan was for Jesus to go humbly and quietly without making a scene so he could make the greatest impact on the people, teaching them God’s own words with authority in the place where they were all gathered, waiting and hungry to hear the truth.
Turn to someone now and take a minute and each of you answer this question, (READ IT) and Go!
Have you ever followed God’s plans even when they did not make sense? How did that turn out for you?
Does anyone have a good story about this they could share with the whole group?

Kingdom Timing means doing what God wants even when it doesn’t make sense

But what if doing the right thing cost you everything? What if taking a stand meant the angry mob came after you? What if it meant being cancelled?
Jesus was in the temple teaching and responding to the needs of the people. But, Jesus was God. He had the highest authority in the whole land. His words were truth in a way that not even the Roman Emperor’s, or the Jewish High Priest’s were. The same mind that spoke creation into existence now sitting and talking to the leaders of the Jewish people. And they had no clue. They were wrong, and not just a little wrong, very wrong.

22 “This is why Moses has given you circumcision—not that it comes from Moses but from the fathers—and you circumcise a man on the Sabbath. 23 If a man receives circumcision on the Sabbath so that the law of Moses won’t be broken, are you angry at me because I made a man entirely well on the Sabbath? 24 Stop judging according to outward appearances; rather judge according to righteous judgment.”

They put a high price on the value of circumcision. It was so important they were willing to do work on the Sabbath to accomplish it, because babies were still born on the Sabbath after all. But to heal, no, that had to wait. But shouldn’t saving and changing a life be more important than keeping a man-made law? That’s what Jesus was trying to say. But they were so caught up on what things looked like on the outside.
This was not going to end well, Jesus already knew it. They were going to kill him. But Jesus was clear. He was not going to apologize for doing the right thing even though it went against the teaching of the religious leaders. He wasn’t backing down. At least that’s how they saw it. He knew it was right to heal on the Sabbath. He knew it was right because it was what the father had told him to do.
And Jesus he was not going to give into the crowd, he was going to do the right thing even though everyone in his world hated him for it.
What a tough spot,
This brings us to the ultimate reality of Kingdom Timing

Kingdom Timing means doing the right thing even when everyone hates you for it

This is one of those truths that I feel like we need to really process.
MY hope and prayer is that you would take time and ask yourself this question.
Would you still follow Jesus, and do God’s will even if you lost everything for doing it?
You don’t have to answer it out loud, but maybe think about it and talk about it
And let’s make it personal
Would you be willing to tell the truth about your faith in class even if it meant getting a failing grade?
Would you be willing to share with your friends that you go to church even if they call you a bigot?
Would you be willing to utilize your social media presence as a platform for the gospel even if it meant losing followers and having lots of people unlike you?
Would you still follow Jesus, and do God’s will even if you lost everything for doing it?
Let’s pray
God help me to obey no matter what
God help your word to soak in
God help me to let go of what other people think
Give me courage to face the truth that your timing is best
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