Life is a vapor for every man, but for the God-Man it was especially brief. A short thirty-three and a half years was all that He lived on this earth. Theologically we know that He lived before He came because He is the eternal Son of God, and thankfully He continues to live as the resurrected, ascended, and reigning Christ. But do not miss the fact that the Father’s good Providence only allowed Him a brief time for His earthly journey.
What is the significance of the short life of Christ?
- It reveals a truth about Christ: He died in what people would say was “the prime of life.” And, yes, He rose at the same time! He is perpetually in His strength, both as God and as Perfect Man. The second Adam is what the first Adam failed to be. Sinful man continued in his corruption and eventually decayed, but the sinless Man never has and never will (Psalm 16:10).
- It reviews a truth about life: The length of a person’s life is not the same as their impact. Every life is short in relation to eternity. In the oldest psalm in the Bible Moses observed that life “is soon cut off and we fly away” (Psalm 90:10). God does not measure our life by how many years we live but by what we did with our days. Remember that your influence will live on after you are gone.
- It reminds us of a truth about us: If the length of your life is in the Father’s hands then the order of it should be as well. David prayed, “My times are in thy hands…” (Psalm 31:15). This truth should guide the way we approach every season of life. If Christ only had 33 years to live, why did He not begin HIs ministry for 30 years? This was the Father’s time and time spent preparing and waiting on God’s moment is never wasted time. Christ did not do everything, go everywhere, heal everyone in His brief ministry – He simply did what the Father wanted (John 6:38).
Life is not about how long you live or how much you think you have to get done; it is about placing your life in God’s hand and placing the emphasis every day where He wants it placed. Refuse to get in a hurry and get ahead of God. And, then, once the Lord leads you, waste no time!
None of us know how long we have. I have already been allowed to live longer on this earth than my Master did. May God help us to live gratefully and seriously every day until the day we see Jesus face to face.