Other Summer Reading Challenge posts: Introduction,
Week Three: off
Welcome to Week 2 of our devotional! Today I have the great joy of introducing you to the very newest member of the Redeemedreader team: Christie Hart. Christie is the Children’s Ministry Coordinator at Covenant Presbyterian Church in Nashville, and she has a background in English literature as well as seminary training.
I asked Christie to make her debut with us by writing today’s devotional, and I think she did a wonderful job. Can’t wait to see what she’ll come up with next week!
TIME TRAVEL DEVOTIONAL #2: Jesus, the Time-Maker
But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ–by grace you have been saved–and raised us up with him and seated us together with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. –Ephesians 2:4-7
Week One Bible Reading: Ecclesiastes 3:1, Psalm 102:25-27, Heb 1:10-12
Optional Further Reading: Genesis 1:1, John 1:1-3, Ecclesiastes 1, Ecclesiastes 3, Revelation 1:8, 2 Peter 3:13, Revelation 21:1
**Note: older readers may prefer to read these passages and then listen to Jeff Baldwin’s interview rather than do this devotional.
Activity props: A piece of yarn or string; one of your old, worn-out shirts
Do you ever imagine that you can travel in time? Do you wonder what that would be like? Time travel books lead us to think about a fascinating question: is time travel possible? Before we even begin to try to answer that question, we need to think about what time is, what it is like, whether it has a beginning and an end, and if there any place outside of it.
The writer of Ecclesiastes noticed long ago that the sun rises and sets every day, that the wind blows around and around in circular paths, that the rivers are always flowing into the sea. Do these same things still happen over and over today? That’s one clue about the nature of time. What about your own life? Do you do the same things day after day? What kinds of things do you do every day, every week or every month?
Make a circle with your string. The end should touch the beginning. Trace your finger around and around it. There is no beginning and no end to a real circle, is there?
If you asked people from other cultures, some would say time is just a circle. They might even believe that people die and come alive again as another person or animal, only to have to go through the same things that happen in days and weeks, seasons and years, over and over again. They would be trapped in a wheel of time forever!
The good news is that we have a book written by someone outside of time: the Bible—God’s Word. And it tells us that time isn’t a circle at all–it’s actually a straight line!
Make your string into a straight line.
God tells us in the Bible that He has appointed not only the seasons for things to happen, but also each thing that happens in time. God has already planned everything that happens in your life (Psalm 139:16)! God also tells us in the Bible that Jesus, His Son, is THE Time-Maker. All things were created through Jesus. He is the time-outsider who shaped time into a straight line!
Have you ever seen a timeline? Let’s pretend like your string is a timeline.
John 1:1 tells us that Jesus was God and He was with God before the world was created.
Put your finger at the very left end of your string.
If your string were a timeline, this end would represent Creation. The Bible tells us that Jesus was with God in the beginning and all things were created through Him—even time. Jesus, the Son of God, is not just outside of time; He is also the Time-Maker!
Put your finger at the very right end of your string.
Let’s do some more research and ask some people who believe in evolution what they think the shape of time is. Many of them would say that time is a straight line, too. But they don’t believe that Jesus is the Time-Maker. They think that when time runs out, the world and everyone in it will end, too. They imagine that our planet and our sun will die out, and the human race along with them. Even though they believe time has an end, they have no hope for what comes after that end. How could they know if they don’t listen to the only one outside of time?
Hold up your old t-shirt.
Every time travel story has an ending. And so will time. For those who trust in Jesus, the Time-Maker, time will never wear out like that old shirt. Instead, when this world ends, we will live forever with Himin the new heavens and the new earth, where we will be with the Time-Maker forever.
We hope you’ve enjoyed our second time travel devotional! And don’t forget to listen to our interview with Jeff Baldwin of Worldview Academy for more insight into a Christian view of time.