I know we’ve already discussed this verse in the last post but I want you to look at it again:
“But when the right time came, God sent his Son, born of a woman, subject to the law.” – Galatians 4:4 (NLT)
Normally I would use a more accurate translation when quoting Scripture, but I like the words “when the right time came” that the New Living Translation uses. I think it brings clarity to what this verse means.
Jesus came at the right time. That means that He wasn’t supposed to come somewhere in the four hundred years of silence, He wasn’t supposed to come after six hundred years of silence; He came exactly when he was supposed to. So, what made it the right time?
Now, we usually think of Rome when we think of the atmosphere of the New Testament world. But the culture is actually owed to the Greek culture. The Roman empire had made the Greeks slaves, but most of these slaves were actually more educated than their masters. As a result, even though they were slaves, they became teachers, physicians, accountants, and occupied other similar important roles. As a result, Rome itself became a Greek speaking city.
So, when Jesus came, there was, for the first time, an international language. As a result, His teachings (and eventually the apostle’s spreading of the Gospel) was made so much easier because everyone could understand Greek.
Because the Roman empire was so powerful they did many things that were able to spread the ministry and teaching of Jesus and the apostles. Such as making good roads that were easy to travel on, the security of citizenship which allowed the apostles to travel freely, international peace that meant the message could be shared without concern for war, a general interest in ideas that the Greeks had encouraged by their love of learning and thus allowing non-Jewish people to become interested in the idea of a Messiah, and I am sure there are more. God orchestrated all of this so that His message could go as far as possible, as quickly as possible.
But the Jews were unhappy. They wanted the Messiah to come and free them from the rule of the Roman Empire. They wanted someone who was going to come as King and free them. They didn’t understand the true mission of Jesus was to free them spiritually rather than physically.
It can become super easy to think that God doesn’t know what He is doing. The Jews didn’t believe the Messiah because they thought that He should be freeing them politically, they didn’t understand that in many ways the political rule of the Romans was to the benefit of Christ’s ministry and the furtherance of God’s Kingdom.
Maybe you feel like God doesn’t know what He is doing, but He does. He works in ways we don’t understand and it ultimately works out just the way it is supposed to. Trust Him. He knows what He is doing He is always in control.