Sunday, June 11, 2006

Time and Theology

Perhaps the most interesting topic for me in theological study is the dimension of time. When covering Soteriology this past spring (the study of salvation) there was a lot of discussion in class about predestination, foreknowledge, and free will. Of course we evaluated questions about the nature of God's love and omniscience, questions like "How can God be perfectly just and loving if he creates some people knowing they are going to Hell?"

While it is very difficult to answer a question like that properly, there is one huge element to considering God that we often forget: He is not bound by time. Time is something that we are restricted by, not God. It is odd to think that at the moment we come into being, God already knows everything about us. Our birth and our death occur simultaneously in a plane where Time is not a fixed boundary. While we are confined to thinking about everything in terms of a beginning, middle, and end (or past, present, and future) God exists at all time, all the time. It's really difficult to work your mind around, and ultimately we are incapable of complete understanding simply due to our finite minds. Time is one of the only things that applies to everyone equally all at the same time and we have no control over. (Gravity is one of the only other things that comes close.) It shapes our theology and our understanding of God more than anything else. Yet the interesting thing is, that while time has such a major effect on our lives and our understanding, it is something that God is not bound by whatsoever.

This is an area and a topic without any very specific answers or conclusions that we can come to, but it is something that we should definitely meditate on and consider deeply. When we begin to see God myopically or unidimensionally, perhaps we should consider that the most restrictive dimension in our earthly lives is one that our heavenly father created, moves through, and interacts with without restriction.


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