Wednesday, September 17, 2008

New Horizons and Considerations on God and Time

I have, for now at least, decided upon a course and purpose for this blog. I have outlined this on the side panel of the blog. If you have any additional thoughts on the purpose statement there-in please feel free to leave me a comment.

For my first truly thought out query, I ponder the relationship between God and Time. I approach this topic currently because it is a primary topic of a sermon which I am preparing for next Sunday.

My personal predisposition is that God created Time. This is based on the fact that God created the Universe and all things in it. Genesis 1:1 simply establishes God's creation of all things, but does not specify many details. But because God created literally everything, I must presume that He created the realm, physically and metaphysically, which all things reside in. Thus, reality itself, matter, energy, time, were all part of God's creation. This being so would mean that God is in control of all of these things and thus not under the influence of any of them Himself. This would lead to the conclusion that God is, in actuality, outside of time all together. This is a very difficult consideration to process for the human psyche. Everything in our existence, everything we think and do are all quite dependent on time and the movement of time. Thus, to even consider or ponder something or someone that is outside time is quite impossible for the human, for even our thoughts deny us the ability.

The conclusion then is that God is not under the influence or dominion of anyone or anything, including metaphysical substances such as the flow of time (if such a thing can truly be called a substance at all). Humans however are under the influence and dominion of many things, moreover, humanity is dreadfully dependent on a plethora of objects. This is an incredible dividing line between God and everyone else. God is the creator, and therefore the great influence and the great independent provider. But Man is God's creation and thus dependent on other parts of God's multi-faceted creation.

Do you have a differing opinion on this subject? Or an addition to make to this query? Please comment and discuss.

4 comments:

Gregory said...

Humans, as we know operate in four dimensions. Height, width, depth, and time(th). I've always imagined that God, rather than being separate from any of the dimensions, encompasses them. I don't believe God stands outside, overlooking time as we would look at a film strip, for instance, in which all the frames are visible but separate.

In fact, I think it may be erroneous to suppose that God experiences time at all, at least not in any fashion we can understand.

If time were a river winding on, and we navigate that river from beginning to end, my opinion might be that God is not the observer standing on the cliff top, able to see the river from source to mouth. Rather, perhaps He's the canyon through which it's winding, metaphorically speaking.

If it's heresy, have the stones ready when I come over tomorrow.

ComposerDude said...

Is it really four dimensions? The idea that time is a fourth dimension to consider is an interesting analogy that sums what we humans experience metaphysically, however, it is an anology that falls short, in my opinion. To say that we experience it, yes; to say that we operate within it as we operate within space, no.
We are subjected to time in a much more immutable manner than we are subjected to space; we can chose what location we desire along x,y, and z. However, we can not move about in time as we do in space, What is past is past, and what is future is as yet to be revealed to us. It is this immutability of time that makes God's creation of it unique.

Whereas we are relegated to the present alone in terms of sight and knowledge, I rather think that God's omniscience is what comes into play concerning time. In light of this, rather than a river by which we are experiencing the canyon, it is that his hands are cupped and we are sailing through the water there.

I like Dr. Dave Reid's spheres of decision making as an example of how God sees time... EBC folk are probably more familiar with it than others.

Black and White Ministries said...

gregory,
everything you say sounds good but there's nothing in scripture to really support your view.

composer,
you said, "However, we can not move about in time as we do in space." but it is theoretically possible to do so. most physicists agree that time travel is possible, and some have already proven "magnetic time shift" which is the transfer of very ver small particles in time by fractions of a second.

matthew,
what did god do before he made the earth? if he did anything, and then he did something after that, then that means god works inside some concept of time. not that god is bound by time like we are. but what is time other than a sequence of events? if god can say, "before i did this, i did that," and i believe he does, then that means god is not outside of time.

Matthew W. Johnson said...

That's a really good point. I will be pondering this.