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Divinity of Christ, book by H. H. Pope Shenouda III

22- Christ is Beyond Time


With Respect to Him Being Beyond Time

(1) The Lord Jesus Christ said to the Jews: "Before Abraham was, I am" (Jn. 8:58). This means that He WAS and existed thousands of years before His birth in the flesh. The Jews understood that He was implying His Divinity. That is why they "took up stones to throw at Him" (Jn. 8:59).

(2) Although Christ is a descendant of David genealogically, yet He said in the Book of Revelation: "I am the Root and the Offspring of David' (Rev. 22:16). The term 'Offspring of David' is clear and understood because He is a descendant of David, but the term 'Root' means that He existed before David. One of the priests around the Divine throne testified to this fact and said to John the Visionary: "Behold, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the

Root of David, has prevailed' (Rev. 5:5).

(3) The Holy Book gives Christ existence before David, Judah and Abraham, for the LORD says to Him in the Psalm, 'from the womb of the morning, You have the dew of Your youth" (Ps. 110: 3).

(4) Christ WAS before the whole world existed, or rather, before all ages. In His soliloquy with the Father, He said' to Him: "And now, O Father, glorify Me together with Yourself, with the glory which I had with you before the world was" (Jn. 17:5), and: "For You loved Me before the foundation of the world' (Jn. 17:24). Therefore Christ WAS before the foundation of the world. Image: Jesus Christ, the King of Kings, and the Lord of Lords. صورة في موقع الأنبا تكلا: الرب يسوع المسيح، ملك الملوك ورب الأرباب. Image: Jesus Christ, the King of Kings, and the Lord of Lords.

صورة في موقع الأنبا تكلا: الرب يسوع المسيح، ملك الملوك ورب الأرباب.

(5) In St. Paul the Apostle discourse about Christ being "the image of the invisible God' (Col. 1:15), he said: "All things were created through Him and for Him. And He is before all things, and in Him all things consist" (Col. 1: 16,17). Therefore Christ was before all things. Why? Because through Him all things were created.

(6) Of course, the fact that Christ created all things means that He WAS before all things. Thus St. John the Evangelist says: "All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made" (Jn. 1: 3), and: "He was in the world, and the world was made through Him" (Jn. 1: 10). Since the world was made through Him, therefore, He WAS before the world and before all things.

(7) In the prophecy of Micah the Prophet we read the most explicit words about Christ's existence before time, and we have discussed this issue before here on in other pages. The prophet says: "But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah, though you are little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of you shall come forth to Me the One to be ruler in Israel, whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting" (Mic. 5:2). Here the prophet attributes to Christ eternity which is an attribute of God alone. What is the meaning of 'whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting'? It means that:

(8) Christ came forth from the Father from eternity, that is, He was begotten of the Father from eternity because He is the Son in the Holy Trinity. He is the Logos of God and God's Logos was in Him from eternity. He is the Wisdom of God and God's Wisdom was in Him from eternity. As long as eternity is attributed to God alone, then Christ is God because He is Eternal and He is beyond time.

(9) Christ's eternity is explicit in the Apostle's words:

"Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever" (Heb. 13:8). And the Lord Jesus Christ says to His disciples: "I am with you always, even to the end of the age" (Matt. 28:20). Daniel the Prophet says of this eternity: "His dominion is an everlasting dominion, which shall not pass away, and His kingdom the one which shall not be destroyed" (Dan. 7:14).