To everything there is a season, a time for every purpose under heaven (Ecclesiastes 3:1).
Today marks a new beginning—New Year’s Day. All around the world people are bringing in the New Year with hopes and prayers—celebrations and resolutions. The day is a significant and yearly milestone that allows us the opportunity to stop, look back, and reassess where we have been, as well as look forward and anticipate what lies ahead. It is a special day on the calendar that closes one chapter and opens the next.
But why do we observe such days? Why do we pay so much attention to the passing of time: days and months and years—anniversaries and birthdays—celebrations and holidays?
Our lives are driven by time. We are ever chasing after time, running out of time, and filling up time. Our days are mapped out with schedules, appointments, and deadlines. But how should we, as followers of Christ, concern ourselves with time? Does God’s Word have anything to say about how we spend our days and months and years?
God, as we shall see, has much to say about time.
God Himself is concerned with time. He created it and ordained it for His purposes. He appoints time and works in time, for His own glory and for our good. And He is intent that we pay attention to time and use it wisely in ways that honor Him and serve His Kingdom.
Ecclesiastes 3 begins: “To everything there is a season, a time for every purpose under heaven” (Ecclesiastes 3:1).
In God’s design, everything in His creation, every matter under heaven—all things existing under His rule and authority—has been given a time. And that includes us. We are here for a purpose—living in this place, at this time, here in this day.
So why did God create time? What purpose does it serve in His creation? How does it do us good and bring Him glory?
In this study I want to look briefly at how time serves both God and man in God’s creation.
God created time for our good and for His own glory.
I have three main points—three ways in which time serves God to make Him known, and serves us, to help us know God in His attributes and works.
I. Time displays the sovereignty of God and the subjection of man.
II. Time displays the eternality of God and the frailty of man.
III. Time displays the mercy of God and the need of man.