July 12, 2019
Acts 7:30-36 (in context)
“After forty years had passed, an angel appeared to Moses in the flames of a burning bush in the desert near Mount Sinai. When he saw this, he was amazed at the sight. As he went over to get a closer look, he heard the Lord say: ‘I am the God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.’ Moses trembled with fear and did not dare to look.
“Then the Lord said to him, ‘Take off your sandals, for the place where you are standing is holy ground. I have indeed seen the oppression of my people in Egypt. I have heard their groaning and have come down to set them free. Now come, I will send you back to Egypt.’
“This is the same Moses they had rejected with the words, ‘Who made you ruler and judge?’ He was sent to be their ruler and deliverer by God himself, through the angel who appeared to him in the bush. He led them out of Egypt and performed wonders and signs in Egypt, at the Red Sea and for forty years in the wilderness.
“This is the Moses who told the Israelites, ‘God will raise up for you a prophet like me from your own people.’ He was in the assembly in the wilderness, with the angel who spoke to him on Mount Sinai, and with our ancestors; and he received living words to pass on to us.
Two big realities in life: time and eternity.
Eternity exists outside of time. God lives in eternity, outside of time. We live in time.
When it comes to time, there are two kinds: “chronos,” or chronological time, and “kairos,” which is often referred to as the fullness of time.
The most profound example of kairos time? Glad you asked.
But when the fullness of the time came, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the Law, so that He might redeem those who were under the Law, that we might receive the adoption as sons. (Galatians 4:4-5.)
I think of kairos time or a kairos moment as eternity breaking into time. Translation: The Holy Spirit is about to make a decisive move.
Today’s text begins, “After forty years had passed. . .” This is a way of saying chronos time, but it gives us a cue that something is about to happen. In other words, we are heading for a kairos moment.
Look back a few verses and we hear Stephen narrating the story with these words,
As the time drew near for God to fulfill his promise to Abraham. . .
He’s saying, in essence, eternity is about to break into time.
And that’s what happened, a la The Burning Bush.
I say all of this because I am about to opine a theological insight I want you to consider today. It is this: With the coming of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost, eternity entered into time until the end of time. They are not one in the same, but rather remain two distinctive realities.
This is why it is so critical that we understand what Eternal Life actually is. So what is Eternal Life? I like the way Jesus expressed it in John’s Gospel: Now this is eternal life: that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent. (John 17:3)
When is Eternal Life? Eternal Life is both now and forever. Why is eternal life so critical? Because when we come to the end of our time and we do not possess eternal life everything is over. Evangelism is the Holy Spirit’s work through the Body of Christ to extravagantly sow the seeds of the gospel of Eternal Life everywhere, all the time.
Whereas before kairos time was limited to particular occasions, now it is an ever present reality. The Holy Spirit is ready to do anything at any time in any place through any person for the sake of the Kingdom of God coming on earth as it is in heaven. The Book of Acts is the unfolding story of the kairos age of the Holy Spirit. This present story of Stephen we find ourselves in—pure kairos—is charged with the very substance of eternity.
We live in the kairos age of the Holy Spirit, in the proverbial 29th chapter of Acts. Anything can happen. In fact, with God, nothing is impossible. Faith means raising our level of expectation of the possibilities that hover just above and beneath the surface of everything, every person, everywhere, all the time.
COME HOLY SPIRIT!
On a scale of 1 to 10 with 10 being the highest, how do you rate yourself on this statement: “I am living my life out of the reality of Eternal Life and am aware of the possibilities of God’s activity all around me all the time.”
For the Awakening,