Part 2 | Part 3 (coming) | Part 4 (coming)
This is the first in a series of posts. This may really convince you I’m insane or it might actually strike a chord and make sense. I guess we’ll find out. I think most of you who know me personally would be willing to concede that I’m not flat-out stupid, and some of you might be gracious enough to even say I’m fairly intelligent, so although some of what I’ll say here might really sound crazy, bear with me and hear me out. I’m not a scholar, theologian, mathematician or physicist, so I have no professional standing by which to support these ideas, but these are views I’ve developed over the years, and they have come to make good sense and explain things well in my own mind. That being said, I don’t claim to have every single detail nailed down nor an answer for every question this might give rise to. This discussion is about God, time, humanity and existence, though, and no one has that all nailed down.
The basic premise is this: I believe that as beings, more than just as human animals, we are dramatically different from what we normally experience and accept. Although we exist and live here and now, Christians, at least, if not all humans, also exist eternally, asynchronously, outside of “our” time and space. So yeah, I have to be crazy, right? I think it’s more a matter of humans accepting what is obvious to our senses to be the truth, when in fact that might not be the case.
As a Christian and a human, one of the greatest differences between me and God that I’m aware of is the way He and I interact with or are affected by time. I think many people have the sense that God is extremely old, but I don’t agree with that. I believe God is outside of time, so He has no real age. Age is an attribute based on time, and since God is outside of time, it’s an attribute that God doesn’t have, or at least not in the same way we do. If you think of all existence, all space and time, as a sponge immersed in water, you could view God as the water. He exists both outside and apart from our space and time, but He also permeates and fills it.
Who or What is God?
Before we go any further, I think some definitions are in order. When I speak of God, who or what do I mean? I mean the God of the Bible, the eternal Creator, the ultimate source. Accepting that He is the God of the Bible, I accept the descriptions of Him that can be found there, and will use Scripture to document and support my ideas.
Some attributes of God, germane to the present discussion, include:
He is eternal – Psalm 90:2 (New International Version) – Before the mountains were born or you brought forth the whole world, from everlasting to everlasting you are God.
He is infinite – Jeremiah 23:24 (New International Version) – “Who can hide in secret places so that I cannot see them?” declares the Lord. “Do not I fill heaven and earth?” declares the Lord.
He is omnipresent (everywhere) – Psalm 139:7-10 (New International Version) – 7 Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence? 8 If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there. 9 If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, 10 even there your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast.
There are other verses that speak of His eternal and infinite nature as well, but the three I offer here make my point. He was before everything else. He is everywhere.
That everywhere-ness brings up another point. For you or me to be in more than one place, we must first be somewhere, at a particular instant in time, then move, both through space and time, to the second location, arriving there at a different instant in time. God is at every place, at the same time, eternally, at least by our space-and-time-based reckoning.
Along with Him being everywhere, always, He is totally unchanging. If we could stay in exactly the same location in space, we would still change. Time would still have an effect on us. Time does not have an effect on God. He is outside of its realm of influence.
So that’s God, for our discussion here. In subsequent posts I’ll talk about who we are as humans and Christians, what time is, and how this all goes together.
- Bullying, all grown up
- Asynchronous existence – life out of time (part 2)