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Time Split in Two

Time Split in Two

by David G. Duggan ©
December 22, 2022

Christ split time in two. We who celebrate His birth believe that there was a time of darkness before Him, and a time of light after Him. Time itself is measured by the succession of night following day following night. Without day and night, time is meaningless and life is impossible. Without the light that is Christ, life is difficult, perhaps impossible.

There are those who do not recognize His light but still exist in its reflection. The people who have dwelt in darkness have seen a great light says Matthew, reflecting Isaiah 500 years before. They both knew time.

Time is measured by days, divided into hours, minutes and seconds, compiled into months and years. The ancients had another measurement: taxes. Jesus was born when Caesar Augustus was emperor and Quirinius tetrarch of Syria. Caesar had decreed that the world should be taxed.

We live in a tumultuous time with civil unrest, resistant disease, and economic uncertainty. Time is never static and demands that we keep pace or be left behind. The time when Jesus came was no different. Crops failed, people revolted against their tyrannical oppressors, and there was always the fear of leprosy which isolated people before killing them off. Death in isolation is perhaps the cruelest of fates with only Charon to ferry us across the River Styx to the Hades guarded by Cerberus to prevent our escape.

The Christ born 2,020 years ago broke this cycle and promised us eternal life in Him, unfettered by the constraints of time or the limits of our time-worn bodies.

The ancients had another measurement: the twinkling of an eye. Faster than a heartbeat, it is one action that we can control, but which also happens involuntarily. Our time on this earth is a mere blink in the celestial orbit, and when that time is over, in that blink we will be changed.

It is said that God's time is measured not in the length of our days but in the moments that take our breath away. We measure our breaths to determine how close we are to death. The breath that God blew into Adam and His Son will at some point in time wear out but until then we have a breath-filled time to rejoice that we live in a time of light that the darkness comprehended not.


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