[19]. For cheaper go get the City of God by Augstine or translated copies of parts of Dun Scotus or Anlsem's complete writings or the Pensees. Whether this is a good definition of eternity, "The simultaneously-whole and perfect possession of … Traditionally, God's eternity has been understood in terms of timelessness. 13.7. He was identifying shapes when he decided to talk to God. The practical applications of the doctrine constitute the most striking part of Charnock’s exposition, and three in particular stand out. The problem becomes especially acute for anyone who holds to the Christian doctrine of the incarnation, for as Nelson Pike urges, 'It could hardly escape notice that the doctrine of God's timelessness does not square well with the standard Christian belief that God once assumed finite, human form (the doctrine of the incarnation).' Would his existence necessitate the presence of time prior to creation? R. G. Swinburne, 'The Timelessness of God', Church Quarterly Review CLXVI (1965), 331. Thomas Aquinas Summa Theologiae Ia. of time suggests that time also began to exist. [27] Soren Kierkegaard called this the Absolute Paradox; this is the contradiction of existence: the presence of the Eternal in time, how God can enter the space-time world without ceasing to be the Eternal. Stuart Hackett argues, Time is merely a relation among objects that are apprehended in an order of succession or that objectively exist in such an order: time is a form of perceptual experience and of objective processes in the external (to the mind) world. Build a relationship and Time will take the person away from you. It is in this sense that He could speak of Himself while on earth as "the Son of man which is in heaven" (John 3:13). Why is ISBN important? Brian Ellis notes that because we speak of 'before creation' or 'prior to the first event', we tend to think that a beginning of time is impossible. Thus the answer to the question, 'What was God doing prior to creation?' On the other hand, those who adhere to a relational view of time generally take the beginning of events to be synonymous with the beginning of time itself. ... at this time, and to pray for God’s will to be accomplished in eternity. Following creation, God is in time. You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition. Then, sir, I would like to gain entrance to the Bar of England. Therefore, if nothing existed and then something existed, there is no absurdity in speaking of this as the first moment of time. Craig has done a great work, and it is marvelous that now the philosophy of religion is engaging with the philosophy of science to the great benefit of both.--John R. LucasFellow of Merton College, Oxford University, Time and Eternity offers a comprehensive discussion of the problems in the concepts of time and eternity on the basis of an extraordinary familiarity with a vast number of recent contributions to this issue from scientists and philosophers. God's existence "prior to" or sans creation would not entail the existence of time if God in such a state is changeless. Eternity is time with an adjective: It is endless time. There would thus be a before and an after with regard to this event: no universe/ universe. It might be asserted that even on the relational view of time there can be time prior to the first event because one may abstract from individual events to consider the whole universe as a sort of event which occurs at its creation. This also removes Kierkegaard's Absolute Paradox concerning the incarnation, for God would be in time prior to his assuming a human nature. On the other hand, if one accepts that time cannot exist apart from events, then a beginning of events would entail a beginning of time as well. [23] We reject the latter because we could presumably cross the boundary and find space on the other side. If God is really related to the world, then it seems most reasonable to maintain that God is in time subsequent to creation. As a result, God's eternity, says Cullmann, must be expressed in terms of endless time. Yes, young man, and what then? Hackett, Theism, pp. Clean Christian jokes, funny jokes, free jokes, and clean jokes and humor about God, faith, eternity, heaven, justice, and more. According to this view, God’s relation to time is like that of His relation to physical space. It is system-dependent upon regarding relation as an accident inhering in a substance. A man was taking it easy, lying on the grass and looking up at the clouds. The answer is: it all depends. Perhaps to share the joy and love of divine fellowship with persons outside himself and so glorify himself: on the other hand, perhaps we lack sufficient information to answer this question. How this is understood depends on which definition of eternity is used. A young man came to W. E. Gladstone when he was Prime Minister of England and said, Mr. Gladstone, I would appreciate your giving me a few minutes in which I might lay before you my plans for the future. Now let’s look at our true nature and see what a difference a change in perspective can make. G. J. Whitrow, What is Time? It knows linear time only…' [2] He maintains, 'Primitive Christianity knows nothing of a timeless God. I just finished reading the book Time and Eternity: Exploring God's Relationship to Time by William Lane Craig. God sees all of eternity’s past and eternity’s future. ..if such a thing as a Christian doctrine of time has to be developed, the work of discussing it and developing it must belong not to biblical but to philosophical theology'. God is the 'high and lofty One who inhabits eternity', declared the prophet Isaiah, but exactly how we are to understand the notion of eternity is not clear. Historical Contingency and Christian Belief, 7909|4009|4016|4023|4029|4035|4041|4046|4051|4056|4060|4064|4068|4071|4073|4075|4077|. Traditionally, the Christian church has taken it to mean 'timeless'. Eternity is an existence that exceeds time. Since prior to and after every period of time there is more time and since the same instant of time never recurs, time must have gone on and will go on forever. 1:4).' Samuel Rosenblatt (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Press, 1948); Bonaventure, 2 Sentences 1.1.1.2.1-6. Thus, the proper understanding of God, time, and eternity would be that God exists changelessly and timelessly prior to creation and in time after creation. . In the same way, to say there was a time when the universe did not exist does not imply there was such a time, but only that we can mentally conceive of such a time. A variant on the above view is expressed by Lawrence Sklar, whose theories of time are heavily influenced by relativity theory. After viewing product detail pages, look here to find an easy way to navigate back to pages you are interested in. [17] This would seem to imply that if the universe had an absolute beginning ex nihilo, then time would also have a beginning; but that if the universe had only a relative beginning from a prior quiescent state, then time would not have a beginning. R. L. Sturch, 'The Problem of Divine Eternity', Religious Studies X (1974), 492. On one hand, God may exist in eternity. . In contrast to the pagan deities of Israel's neighbors, the Lord never came into … Send article to Kindle To send this article to your Kindle, first ensure no-reply@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. It is also an important issue in theological understandings of the nature of God. Lawrence Sklar, Space, Time, and Spacetime (Berkley and Los Angeles: University of California Press, 1974), p. 274. Also languages being temporal is not a very good argument without looking into semantics of lanuage and other things pretty extensively which he does not do. Time and Eternity - God Jokes. Time and Eternity: Exploring God's Relationship to Time. Since the first event did not occur, then an infinite time must have elapsed. There does not appear to be, therefore, any absurdity in the notion of a beginning of time. But if God sustains real relations with the world, the co-existence of God and the world imply that God is temporal subsequent to the moment of creation. Eternity. Though we can, after creation, think of nothingness one hour before the first event, in terms of reality, there was no such moment. There's a problem loading this menu right now. The "eternal" God is he who was in the beginning, is now, and will be in all the future, "who is, who was, and who will be" (Rev. This remarkable work offers an analytical exploration of the nature of divine eternity and God's relationship to time. William Lane Craig (PhD, University of Birmingham, England; DTheol, University of Munich) is research professor of philosophy at Talbot School of Theology in La Mirada, California, and at Houston Baptist University in Houston, Texas. When God created the world, He created time—there was a “beginning” (Genesis 1:1). Find all the books, read about the author, and more. For prior to the universe's beginning, if there was nothing at all, not even space, then it would certainly seem to be true that there was no time either. Brian Ellis, 'Has the universe a beginning in time? . Check out these titles from Crossway that cover a wide range of topics. It is a must-read for anyone seriously interested in the problem of time and eternity in Christian philosophy.--Robert RussellProfessor of Theology and ScienceGraduate Theological Union, Berkeley, Calif. Soren Kierkegaard, Philosophical Fragments, trans. ISBN. Craig (Author) 5.0 out of 5 stars 3 ratings. The question is: which understanding of God's relationship to time is to be preferred? But what about subsequent to the first event? Ian Hinckfuss also argues that if the universe were frozen into immobility, there would still be time because temporal duration and measurement are not dependent upon the continuous operation of a clock throughout that time. At the beginning of time no past tense statements could be made, since there was no past. 72-3. His discussion of the interrelated scientific, philosophical, and theological issues clears up many previous misconceptions and proposes a plausible understanding of the relation of God to time and eternity that many will find helpful.--George EllisProfessor of Mathematics and Applied MathematicsUniversity of Capetown. [9] If we agree that the universe began to exist, does this necessitate as well a beginning to time itself? Will that change in eternity? Instead, our system considers things like how recent a review is and if the reviewer bought the item on Amazon. Stephen J. Wellum; John S. Feinberg, general editor, Edited by J. P. Moreland, Stephen C. Meyer, Christopher Shaw, Ann K. Gauger, and Wayne Grudem, Edited by Guy Prentiss Waters, J. Nicholas Reid, and John R. Muether, Crossway; Illustrated edition (March 1, 2001), Reviewed in the United States on October 12, 2018. [4] Barr thinks that Genesis may very well teach that time was created along with the universe, and that God may be thought of as timeless. The argument is subtle and precise. Please try again. Build a building and Time tears it down. Download for offline reading, highlight, bookmark or take notes while you read God, Time, and Eternity: The Coherence of Theism II: Eternity. [30], Thus, on a relational view of time God would exist timelessly and independently 'prior' to creation; at creation, which he has willed from eternity to appear temporally, time begins, and God subjects himself to time by being related to changing things. BIBLIOGRAPHY: H.A. We have already seen that authentic Christianity is far more than a "pie in the sky, by and by" religion. Zwart, for example, asserts, According to the relational theory the passage of time consists in the happening of events. As the latest in his series of ground-breaking books, Time and Eternity summarizes and extends Craig's previous technical arguments and conveys them to a more general audience. Eternity is the full expression of what we have created in time. Please try again. [28]. It is magnificently designed for life on earth, right now, with all its pressures and problems, its joys and tears. R. G. Swinburne, Space and Time (London: Macmillan, 1968), pp.207-8. BY Dr. John Koessler Dr. John Koessler, who retired as professor emeritus from Moody Bible Institute, formerly served in the division of applied theology and church ministry. Most writers who object to a timeless, personal God consider God only subsequent to creation as he is related to human persons, but fail to consider God prior to creation (e.g. This bar-code number lets you verify that you're getting exactly the right version or edition of a book. He interprets Minkowski spacetime in a literalistic way, asserting that future events 'have determinate reality' and future objects are 'real existents'. The Bible … Craig. Since time is unbounded, it is of logical necessity infinite. There was an error retrieving your Wish Lists. Conclusion : Prior to creation, God is outside of time. Theists say that God is eternally existent. God himself paid the price to bring me back into eternity. The idea of a 'time before time' is a mental construction only, a product of the imagination. Please try your request again later. ISBN-10: 1402000111. Your recently viewed items and featured recommendations, Select the department you want to search in. But the parts I did understand were insightful and I agree with Craig’s conclusion. It seems, then, that time is something good and well-suited for God’s creation. As Swinburne explains, ...since God coexists with the world and in the world there is change, surely there is a case for saying that God continues to exist for an endless time, rather than that he is timeless. When we speak of God as eternal, then, we may mean either 'timeless' or simply 'everlasting'. Many of Craig's arguments (and his refutation of others') can be occasionally abstruse, and require careful study. [22] But Ellis draws a very instructive analogy between this sort of speech and talk of temperatures below absolute zero. 57:15). I would recommend it to others. Harvey, Physics and Metaphysics in Hasdai Crescas (1998), ch. 286-7. So the question whether time is finite or infinite may be reduced to the question whether the series of events is finite or infinite. Why did God so determine? But, in fact, it does seem plausible to contend on a relational view of time that a first instant could exist, since apart from events no time exists. Craig has done a great work, and it is marvelous that now the philosophy of religion is engaging with the philosophy of science to the great benefit of both. Sabid Ahmad Kamali (Lahore: Pakistan Philosophical Congress, 1958); Saadia Gaon, The Book of Beliefs and Opinions, trans. . Modern defenders of the argument include Stuart C. Hackett, The Resurrection of Theism (Chicago: Moody Press, 1957); G. J. Whitrow, The Natural Philosophy of Time ( London and Edinburgh: Thomas Nelson and Sons, 1961); Pamela M. Huby, 'Kant or Cantor? It has a very thorough treatment of historical philasophical works and how the theory of relativity and its interpretation affect man's perception of time. Once temporal persons were created, God would then begin to experience temporal personal relationships with them. On the other hand, the Newtonian would say God exists in absolute time changelessly and independently prior to creation and that creation simply marks the first event in time. But, he adds, without physical objects, time could not be measured: one could not distinguish an hour from a day in a period of time without objects. God’s life thus is not spread out over time the way ours is, meaning that he is outside of time. [29] Hence, God exists timelessly, unrelated to creatures, while creatures in time change in their relations to him. [25] Therefore, the fact that the creator is personal does not necessitate the presence of time prior to creation. To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number. is not the old gibe noted by Augustine: 'He was preparing hell for those who pry into mysteries' , but rather, 'He was enjoying the fullness of divine personal relationships, with an eternal determination for the temporal creation and salvation of human persons.' . [11] Therefore, Newton's claims about Absolute Time were correct. [5] Barr's basic contention is that, 'A valid biblical theology can be built only upon the statements of the Bible, and not on the words of the Bible.' The book offers a plausible argument for a realistic conception of temporal process and for God's involvement in the temporal distinctions and processes because of His presence in His creation.--Wolfhart PannenbergProfessor of Systematic TheologyLudwig Maximilliens Universitaet-Muenchen, Germany, As a scientist doing theoretical research in gravitational physics and quantum cosmology, I found Dr. Craig's thoughtful book highly interesting. See also my book mentioned in the above note. 2–3; W.Z. [10] For every instant of time must be preceded and succeeded by another instant of time. Given the superiority of a relational over a non-relational (Newtonian) view of time, God ought to be considered as timeless sans creation and temporal subsequent to creation. [21]. Is God somehow beyond time, living a life that does not involve one thing after another? In the incarnation, a human nature becomes related in a new way to the second person of the Trinity, but that person does not sustain a real relation with that human nature. God is the ‘high and lofty One who inhabits eternity’, declared the prophet Isaiah, but exactly how we are to understand the notion of eternity is not clear. God designed us to live in Eternity. [31]. Reviewed in the United Kingdom on December 19, 2016. The God of Western religion is said to be eternal. When we say things like "God is timeless" or "God has no beginning or end," we are trying to explain God in terms of a dimension by which He is not constrained. . Get Dr. Craig's newsletter and keep up with RF news and events. 210-11; Peter Geach, (God's Relation to the World', Sophia VII 1969), 1-9. Therefore, we need to ask whether there is any absurdity in supposing that time had a beginning. pressed Gladstone. Thus, there could be no first instant of time. The time that passes on earth is of no consequence from God’s timeless perspective. John Donnelly (New York: Fordham University Press, 1972), pp. For a thorough discussion, see my The Kalam Cosmological Argument (London: Macmillan, 1979). Eternity is not, as in Platonic and Neoplatonic thought, supratemporal or nontemporal. For in the eternal and changeless love relationship between the persons of the Trinity, we see how a truly personal God could exist timelessly, entirely sufficient within himself. When the first event occurred, the first moment of time began. The former would appear to involve God in time, but the latter would not, for if God is tri-personal he has no need of temporal persons with whom to relate in order to enjoy personal relationships--the three persons of the Godhead would experience perfect and eternal communion and love with no necessity to create other persons. Sturch argues that in order to avoid an infinite temporal regress of states of consciousness, God's knowledge must be timeless. '. God's existence "prior to" or sans creation would not entail the existence of time if God in such a state is changeless. Yes, said the great statesman, and what then? Scripture: Psalms 103:15-18. God, Time, and Eternity: The Coherence of Theism II: Eternity William Lane Craig (auth.) It is a rewarding experience to read through this brilliant and well-researched book by one of the most learned and creative thinkers of our era.--Quentin SmithProfessor of Philosophy, Western Michigan University. God could know the content of all knowledge - past, present, and future - in a simultaneous and eternal intuition. Nelson Pike, God and Timelessness [London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1970], pp. We were created for eternity, yet, we fell from eternity, and became bound in time. Time And Eternity: Cast Away Series Contributed by J John on Dec 20, 2007 (message contributor) based on 14 ratings (rate this sermon) | 8,944 views. Just as He is omnipresent, He is also omnitemporal. Reviewed in the United States on June 4, 2011. 121-9). Thus, on a Newtonian view of time, the universe arises in an absolute, undifferentiated time, while on a relational view of time, it comes into existence with time. Is God's eternity to be construed as timeless or temporal? According to the Christian doctrine of creatio ex nihilo, the universe began to exist a finite amount of time ago. J. R. Lucas also contends that time could neither begin nor end. time is the generalized relation of before-and-after extended to all events' (ibid. Given the superiority of a relational over a non-relational (Newtonian) view of time, God ought to be considered as timeless sans creation and temporal subsequent to creation. I gave this book only 3 stars not because I think that’s all it’s worthy of, but because many of the parts that didn’t skirt my understanding exceeded it. Are there, then, good philosophical arguments for preferring one of these competing notions of God's eternity to the other? Research Professor of Philosophy, Talbot School of Theology; Founder, Reasonable Faith, www.reasonablefaith.org. I found this book very informative and interesting to read. We might want to say that time does not exist until an event occurs, but when the event does occur, there is a sort of retroactive effect causing past time to spring into being. If time coexists with events, then an origin of time merely implies a beginning of the universe. God, Time, and Eternity: The Coherence of Theism II: Eternity (v. 2) 2001st Edition by W.L. But this doctrine is singularly unconvincing. I was hoping since this got good reviews and Craig is talked about highly at least in popular crowds and is not as bad as Richard Dawkins this would be good but not great. A relational view of time seems superior to a Newtonian view because (1) it is difficult to see how time could exist apart from events and (2) the Newtonian objection that every instant of time implies a prior instant is adequately answered by the relational view. Facebook; The physical universe itself may have had a beginning – but this can only be true if there is a period of time before the beginning during which the universe did not exist. Second Peter 3:8 says, "…with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day." Those who try to think about God and time are pressing the very limits of human understanding. But this seems to confuse our mental ability to think back in time with the progressive, unidirectional nature of time itself. This shopping feature will continue to load items when the Enter key is pressed. Enjoy a wide variety of funny Christian jokes, good clean jokes, and family safe jokes and religious humor. Given the superiority of a relational over a non-relational (Newtonian) view of time, God ought to be considered as timeless sans creation and temporal subsequent to creation. In religions where eternity is radically contrasted with time, time is seen as an illusion, or utterly subjective, or an ephemeral episode. In general that which remains the same while other things change is not said to be outside time, but to continue through time. But if the universe does come to exist ex nihilo, how could we say this first event has an effect on reality (but of course there was no reality!) Second, if the relationalist is correct, then an infinite time does not elapse prior to creation, because time begins at creation. Time and Eternity was one of his first books about the philosophy of religion and mysticism, after writing throughout most of the 1930s and 1940s that was influenced by phenomenalist philosophy. God’s eternity does not go by with the time of the created world. ', Australasian Journal of Philosophy XXXIII (1955), 33. Then I hope to do gr… But in the first place, Wolfe's formulation of the argument is defective, for the contention is that an infinite number of events cannot elapse, not that an infinite time cannot elapse. Kamali ( Lahore: Pakistan philosophical Congress, 1958 ) ; Saadia Gaon, the fact the., Reasonable Faith, www.reasonablefaith.org go by with the time that passes on earth right!: Exploring God 's relationship to time itself, Reasonable Faith, www.reasonablefaith.org,! True nature and see what a difference a change in their relations to eternal. Upon regarding relation as an accident inhering in a simultaneous and eternal intuition the answer to the of! 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