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Keralabrethren.net: General Forum: Genesis 1:1 - 1:3

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# 08081 :  Genesis 1:1 - 1:3

1 In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.

2 And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.

And God said, Let there be light: and there was light.

I would like to know if any of the readers can theologically demostrate that an unrevealed interval of time cannot be reasonably assumed to have happened between 1:1 and 1:3, during which the earth was formless and void? About myself: I am not a supporter of the 'gap theory' which seeks to reconcile the deceit of evolution with the scriptures.I don't like to make assumptions that the as written Bible does not support.

Post by : moses2006  View Profile    since : 1 Jul 2016


Reply by : paizanjoe   View Profile   Since : 2 Jul 2016 11:22:23 AM Close

Hi Moses,

Not maybe directly related to the topic. There is a common ground between evolutionists and believers - everything started from the water. 

With regards to the gap. To me that is a higher mystery. 

In Psalms 90:4 - For a thousand years in Your sight Are like yesterday when it passes by, Or as a watch in the night.

Based on this verse and one more in 2 Peter 3:8, time as the 4th dimension holds power and restriction on man and creation. Not on God. 

May the gap is 1 day, it could be 1000 years or a million. The measure is applicable to things/people who have limitations. God does not have any limitation, therefore time does not limit God. God created time for man. But God also limits time for man to his higher understanding and salvation.

Regards,

Joe.

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Reply by : deepucvarghese   View Profile   Since : 4 Jul 2016 7:43:43 AM Close

Dear brother Moses,

Verse 2 onwards is the detailed description of what is told in verse 1 i.e How God created the heaven and earth.

Verse 2 is description of the state before the creation of heaven and earth.

Time started from verse 3 onwards i.e on day 1, so we cannot talk of any time between verses 2 and 3.

This is what i understand. 

- Deepu

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Reply by : moses2006   View Profile   Since : 7 Jul 2016 7:31:57 PM Close

Thanks to all who contributed.

Dear Deepu, the measuring of time (as Day 1, Day 2, etc) began in v3, but clearly there is a "time" during which the earth was in darkness under water, with the Spirit of God hovering upon the waters. This time is unmeasured, but it is still there.

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Reply by : deepucvarghese   View Profile   Since : 11 Jul 2016 9:06:25 AM Close
Dear brother   1) If Verse 1 is a summary statement of the creation as i said earlier then Verse 2 is part of day 1 due to its continuation,    Reading v2 & v3 together - Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters and God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light.   I dont see why God has to wait between verses 2 and 3. Verse numbers are introduced by us.   2) If verse 1 is not the summary statement of the creation , then time has started in Verse 1 itself. i.e verse 1 also is part of Day 1. The presence of water in verse 2 suggest that verse 1 is not a summary statement. Hence verses 1-5 will be under day 1.  
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Reply by : moses2006   View Profile   Since : 14 Jul 2016 5:26:41 PM Close

Rick,

This is sort of side discussion, but how do establish that God is always in the present tense? I know what you mean by this - that God does not have a past and future like us humans. Are there any verses to prove this? I have heard many people state this, but never saw any scriptural support.

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Reply by : moses2006   View Profile   Since : 14 Jul 2016 7:35:35 PM Close

Dear rick,

I am not an athiest, I am a Christian who believes in God and hopes for His mercy!

When you say that 'God lives outside of time' - you should mean it in terms of human time. God lives outside of human time - He lives in His own time. We exist in our time and He exists in His own version of time. For Him, a 1000 human years of our time is like a day (in God's version of time) and 1 day of human time is like 1000 years (in God's version of time) - see 2 Pet 3:8.

Time was not created in Gen 1, time already existed. It exists because of the existance of God who lives from past eternity to future eternity, as viewed from our time. Human time began to be measured from Gen 1:3 and this continues to this day. The phrase 'in the begining' in Gen 1:1 is not a reference to a begining in time, as much as it is a reference to a begining of God's ways, that would lead to a begining of human time in 1:3. That is why we cannot measure when Gen 1:1 happenned or how long of a time is the duration implied in 1:2 - becasue these verses are referring to events in God's time.

Some time in the future, human reckoning of time will end  and merge with God's eternal time frame. From then on, there is no more human time. But, even though human time has ended, we will still be able to look at our human lives as something of the past. There will a 'present' in His presence and we will be part of His future, in eternity. New Jerusalem, new Heaven, new Earth are all in His time, and are not part of our current reckoning of time.

The expression 'I AM' tells us that God is unchanging. He is the same God from ever to ever - the same God who appeared to Abraham was present for the suffering Isarelites 400 years later. 'I AM' does not indicate that time is not a part of God's existance, which He does for an unending duration of time.

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Reply by : moses2006   View Profile   Since : 14 Jul 2016 9:53:33 PM Close

Dear rick,

The following is my own definition of time and how time applies to God's existence. You may have some other definition, which you may provide.

For us, time is the entity, whose passage, brings the future, to the present and then removes it to make the present as the past. It is also the entity that gives structure to the perception of our own continued existence in the present. Time is also the gap that we find existing between distinct events in the past.

For God, He exists, hence He lives. Because He lives, time is the outcome of His continued and eternal self existence. He is the reason why time exists at all! Just like the term, glory. When did glory start? It always was, because glory is the outcome of God's majesty and holiness. As long as God existed, there is always glory about Him. Similarly, as long as God existed, there has been a past, a present and a future - in other words, the passage of time. But there never was a past, in which God did not exist.

Without referring to the concept of the passage of time, we cannot fathom what it means, when the scriptures assert this about God, "Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God Almighty, who was, and is, and is to come." (Rev 4:8) Forever, God is one who was, who is and who is to come. The four living creatures, assert God's dominion over time, by stating His continued existence as a fact over and over, "day and night". God's eternal existence would have had no meaning for us, without that existence being connected to time and its passage. Since God communicated to us that He lives forever, we can know that He meant it to be understood in the light of our understanding of the passage of time - i.e, the past, present and future.

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Reply by : paizanjoe   View Profile   Since : 17 Jul 2016 12:25:13 AM Close
While we continue to be argumentative of what God can and cannot do. Lets remember this: Oh, the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments and His ways past finding out! Romans 11:33 NKJV http://bible.com/114/rom.11.33.NKJV Regards, Joe
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Reply by : moses2006   View Profile   Since : 18 Jul 2016 8:20:24 PM Close

Dear rick,

Quote, "I would give ample evidence and references to show that God lives outside of time."

Can you please provide the amble evidence and references as you said exits that shows "that God lives outside of time"? Previously you quoted Ex 3:14 and asked me more questions regarding the timing of elements melting, new Jerusalem, new earth, new heaven, etc. You did not provide the ample evidence. Can you do that first?

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Reply by : moses2006   View Profile   Since : 20 Jul 2016 5:00:18 PM Close

Dear rick,

I don't see what 'predestination' has to do with "God living outside time". May be I am missing some logical inconsistency? Could you explain how these are related? And yes, I firmly believe in the biblical doctrine of predestination.

Unfortunately, none of the verses you quoted even indirectly supports the idea that "God lives outside time". Gen 1:1 is a statement of creation. Jude 24,25 is about preservation of the saints. Isa 57:15 is God referring His own unending life - He inhabiteth eternity. 2Tim 1:9 deals with our holy calling and our predestination. Tit 1:2 deals with God promise of eternal life to believers. Eph 1:4 is God choosing the believers in Christ before the creation. 1 Pet 1:20 is the manifest destiny of Christ as a Savior ordained before the creation. None of these verses imply directly or indirectly that "God lives outside time".

I agree with your statement that physical laws do not apply to God, who created these physical laws. Also, its true that for the Lord, gravity and walls were not a barrier, unless He chooses for them to apply. But how can you call 'time' as a physical law? Time is not a physical law. I defined time before, which it seems you agreed to, at least partially.

The term 'past eternity' is a term that shows that God has no beginning. His years cannot be fathomed. God has always existed in the past, no matter how many eons and eons you go back in time. That is the meaning of past eternity. Ps 90:2 talks about the idea of a past eternity by the use of the expression, from everlasting [in the past] to everlasting [in the future].

So far you have not given any credible evidence to shown that "God lives outside time". I gave you Rev 4:8 as a direct evidence of time applying to God. The Lord God Almighty - was, is and is to come - God has a past("was"), a present ("is") and future ("is to come") like us who live in time. But unlike us, He has no beginning in time.

Now let me give you another direct evidence verse about God and time - Rev 8:1 - "When he opened the seventh seal, there was silence in heaven for about half an hour."

This verse states that there is silence in heaven at the 7th seal and this silence is maintained for a measured quantity of time (1/2 hour). This shows that time 'flows' even in heaven. The 1/2 hour may or may not be identical to earthly 1/2 hour. But the point is, there is a sense of passage of time even in heaven, and that passed time can be measured in discrete units, just like we can on earth. Heaven here obviously refers to the dwelling place of God and His angels. So God live in heaven where there is time which passes from the future to the present and on to the past and this process can be measured.

I do not want this discussion to get to some type of argument on things beyond our human comprehension. But I am really interested in knowing whether the Bible reveals that God lives outside of time and whether we can make that inference, directly or indirectly, from the Bible. But I don't want to pursue this issue, if things looks like a heated debate or argument, for which I have no interest.

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Reply by : moses2006   View Profile   Since : 21 Jul 2016 10:56:24 PM Close

Quote, "At the outset I have to say that the very concept of “God living outside of time” was the basis of belief in “Predestination

No, the basis for belief in Predestination is that the Bible teaches this doctrine. Not because of the idea that "God living outside of time".

Quote, "Isaiah 40:22 is very important verse for believers in Predestination to show that God lives outside of time."

May be for you, but I do not see any relationship between Is 40:22, Predestination and the idea of "God living outside time".

Quote, "Let us analyze this verse. What are these four beasts?" "do you mean there were four beasts in just as they were presented they were, or were they metaphors used to represent some meaning?"

I only know that these creatures resemble earthly creatures, lion, calf, man and eagle. It does not say that these creatures are actually lion, calf, man and eagle! Anyway what is the point to asking me this question? How are these creatures related to the idea of "God living outside time"?

Quote, "Likewise, “Which was, and is and is to come” simply means forever. It does not mean God was, God is, and God will come."

Yes this verse does mean that Gad has a past("was"), a present ("is") and future ("is to come"). Read the verse carefully: "...Holy, holy, holy, Lord God Almighty, which was, and is, and is to come." The word "which" connects the was, is and is to come directly as a personal attribute of the Almighty God. In your quote you are trying to refute a direct statement giving glory to Him who sits on the throne.

Quote, "There is large amount of symbolism in the Bible. You cannot take every word literally."

I agree there is a lot of symbolic language. The "night and day" reference in Rev 4:8 is clearly symbolic since there is no night in heaven. But, when the 4 living creatures address the Almighty God and other heavenly beings, they are not using symbolic language to Him, where they say one thing, but mean something else! They are stating what is true about God to God - He was, He is and He is to come. There is no symbolic language there.

Quote, "The expressions in Revelation about silence for half-hour, He was, He is, and is to come are in relation to our time; from our perspective of time."

The expression "Holy, holy, holy, Lord God Almighty, which was, and is, and is to come" are statements that are made in heaven, heard in heaven by those who live in heaven. There is no need for a human perspective in heaven. John was privileged to see this grand worship scene and record what he saw. We also have the privilege to know what these living creatures are doing. When we read about what they are doing, we are not allowed to make private, human interpretations of what is happening in the presence of God. We are not allowed to brush it away as being symbolic. We have to take it as we read them, as God intended for us to understand.

Quote, "There are only two things possible. There is no “Time” for God. If God has time then He is NOT in “Eternity”; but He is just another man living within the limits of ‘TIME’."

Time is a "limitation" for us, because we were created to have a beginning and a bodily end in time. For Him who lives for ever and never had a beginning, time is not a limitation. To say that if God experiences time, He is limited by it and He is just another man, is not only irreverential, but it is a display of reverence of time over God Himself. It makes light of God's own claim that He dwells in eternity - because, if God does not experience time, then His claim of living forever, has no meaning that is comprehensible to human mind. We can appreciate the concept and glory of eternity and eternal life, when viewed from the perspective of an eternal passage of time, unending in duration.

Quote, "For God it is like all the events spread out on a canvas. He will see all the events simulataneously, but He has spread out for us like several film-strips running in consecutive intervals of time, which he created for us. We see one image with 12 or 16 frames at a time."

First of all there is NO EVIDENCE of this in the Bible. It is the product of your flights of fancy and maybe what you heard from some uninformed preacher. Secondly, if God sees all events simultaneously, why do we read that "....once the longsuffering of God waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was a preparing..." (1 Pet 3:20 - quoted partially)? Why would God who sees all of time together have to "wait"? He could have acted instantly at the future time. Again, this verse directly implies that God experiences time. God could have reduced the 120 years of Noah's preaching to 120 days, but in His mercy He chose to wait for 120 years to pass by on earth.

Quote, "To say that God lives within time is “pantheism”, which is identifying God with creation. The “Time” is creation. It denies God’s very glorious personality and identifies nature and God. It is man’s religious belief a doctrine from philosophy, which identifies God with the Universe. God is not within the creation."

I never said God lives in the seconds, hours, days, months and years of human time. I already stated this from 2 Pet 3:8 - God's version of time is different from how we measure or experience time. God is outside of His own creation, but God created this universe at some point in His eternal time.

Quote, "When you go to that deep, it becomes necessary to read how it was written in Greek. Half an hour is the translation of Greek Strong’s Number 2256. “hemiorion”, which means “half-half”. It is not half-an-hour time as we understand according to our “Time” It just means there was a space of period wherein there was silence.

According to my sources 'hemiorion' comes from hemisys, which means 'half' and hora, which mean 'hour'. So together 'hemiorion' means 'half of an hour'. You mentioned the words "there was a space of period" above. What was this space of period in?

So far I have provided several verses that directly imply that time passage is a normal part of our and God's existence, though it may be different for us:

2 Pet 3:8

Rev 8:1

Rev 4:8

1 Pet 3:20

Ps 90:2

You, however, have not produced any direct evidence to show that "God [is] living outside time".

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Reply by : paizanjoe   View Profile   Since : 14 Oct 2016 8:25:54 AM Close

Hello,

These are the questions one should ask with this context to clearly define whether we understand atleast in a miniscule manner, the Almighty.

  1. If God is the creator of ALL things. Is he not the creator of time? 
  2. Do time constraint/control the Almighty God?
  3. Or, Does God define time for mankind but not Himself. If He does for himself, how and why should He?

Regards,

Joe

 

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