Featured Doesn't Omnipresence include Omnitemporal?

Discussion in 'Theological Forum' started by SelfSuspendedDeuteronomy2929, Apr 15, 2019 at 3:54 PM.

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  1. SelfSuspendedDeuteronomy2929

    SelfSuspendedDeuteronomy2929 Puritan Board Freshman

    If the omnipresence of God means that God inhabits all of His creation & is present everywhere in His creation, then doesn't this mean He inhabits all of His creation's created time too & is present throughout every time at the same time?
    If so, then wasn't the entire life of Jesus experienced by the Triune God at creation when He occupied all of the space & time, everywhere present, that He had created?
     
  2. BayouHuguenot

    BayouHuguenot Puritan Board Doctor

    No. God can enter time, but he isn't "contained" by time. If God were contained by time, as those who would deny divine eternalism would say, then you would have a point.
     
  3. SelfSuspendedDeuteronomy2929

    SelfSuspendedDeuteronomy2929 Puritan Board Freshman

    No! You misunderstand me.

    I did not say "CONFINED". Of course He is not confined.

    God's omnipresence in creation certainly doesn't meant creation contains God.

    So - you completely misunderstand me.

    What I mean is that Omnitemporal means He is everywhere present in every moment of time since He created this creation and became omnipresent.

    God is without beginning or end and exists in a way beyond creation that we can't comprehend.

    Also, I obviously believe that the time in creation is a created thing, and beyond creation God is timeless.

    How do you define omnipresence? And isn't God omnipresent at every moment of time?
     
  4. TheInquirer

    TheInquirer Puritan Board Freshman

    I think perhaps you are positing divine attributes to time. Time only exists in the present does it not? I don't think God can be inhabiting the past right now since the past no longer exists and the future hasn't happened yet.

    As for defining omnipresence, I recommend picking up some good systematic works on the topic and getting grounded in the basic arguments.
     
  5. SelfSuspendedDeuteronomy2929

    SelfSuspendedDeuteronomy2929 Puritan Board Freshman


    [1] The past certainly does still exist, just as the future exists.

    For example, redemption is applied by God retrospectively & prospectively from the cross which is the centrality of "redemptive time".

    So, for example, in Genesis 3:15 when God mercifully spoke the protoevangelium in the hearing of Adam & Eve and they believed upon the promised one by His saving grace ... the blood of Christ was applied to them by God from the future.

    Also, if time doesn't exist in its entirety then how could there be a decree and how could there be prophecy?

    [2] From a scientific bent, for example, because of how time exists in creation, the GPS satellites & the ISS are in a different "time zone" than we are here on earth and God certainly is everywhere present in these different time zones.
     
  6. jwithnell

    jwithnell Moderator Staff Member

    Your premise is not sound. God does not inhabit his creation. That would be like scooping up seawater and saying the ocean is in a teacup. Scripture may speak of God in heaven or moving to and fro over the earth, but an attempt to describe God in space must consider his transcendence.

    The same is true for time -- any temporal sense of God must be given in terms of his infinity.

    Iron sharpens iron, brother ;)
     
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2019 at 7:30 PM
  7. TheInquirer

    TheInquirer Puritan Board Freshman

    Prophecy exists because all of the events of history exist in the mind of God and he reveals some of his plans in advance.

    I have no idea what to do with your other comments as I have not run across those ideas before. Are you saying the astronauts in ISS are not in “the present” as we are?

    Are there any theologians that support these ideas you are positing? I’m genuinely curious.
     
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2019 at 7:47 PM
  8. SelfSuspendedDeuteronomy2929

    SelfSuspendedDeuteronomy2929 Puritan Board Freshman

    You are misunderstanding my comment entirely!

    Of course the ontological being of God is everlasting to everlasting in a NON-TIME sense.

    Of course God is timeless.

    God is beyond His creation.

    But God is everywhere present within His creation too.

    What does it mean for God to be "everywhere present" in His creation?
     
  9. SelfSuspendedDeuteronomy2929

    SelfSuspendedDeuteronomy2929 Puritan Board Freshman

    Time passes at different rates depending upon gravity &/or acceleration and velocity.

    For example, mathematical calculations are needed to keep GPS locations accurate because of the time differences between the satellites and the surface of the earth. In other areas of space when gravitation increases greatly, or acceleration increases greatly, time passes much slower in relation to other places. Another example, if a space ship left earth and was able to travel close to the speed of light for a few years and then turned around and come back to earth at the same velocity everyone they knew would be dead because time passed so slowly for them and they did not age at the same rate. This is why an ISS astronaut who has a twin on earth is now lightly younger than his twin!
     
  10. TheInquirer

    TheInquirer Puritan Board Freshman

    Have you read any of the major systematicians on God’s omnipresence, immensity, or infinity?
     
  11. SelfSuspendedDeuteronomy2929

    SelfSuspendedDeuteronomy2929 Puritan Board Freshman

    Dear Jim - I only became calvinistic in my soteriology 7 years ago. I am an old disabled military vet and ill. Reading is very difficult for me. In these past years when I became Calvinistic I started studying the Westminster Standards. I also listened to thousands of reformed sermons and also sermon series on just about everything since it is so hard for me to read at great lengths.
    Then I began to study reformed Covenant Theology deeply because of things I had been learning. So then I could no longer be credo-baptost. So then I became Paedo-Baptist.
    When I discovered the 3 Forms of Unity I was even in more awe of reformed theology!
    I have read some important reformed works but there are hundreds of books I wish I could read but I can't. I buy books all the time that i wish I could read. I keep asking God to perform a miracle and let me learn what is in them by osmosis!

    Is there a Sermon Series you could recommend that would teach me the things you seem to think I lack?

    FYI: my current understanding of Omnipresence come from Reformed sermons on Sermon Audio and elsewhere.
     
  12. jwithnell

    jwithnell Moderator Staff Member

    Of course I want to understand you; these forums help a great deal in understanding viewpoints.

    It is your prepositions, such as in and within, that trip me. I realize omnipresence has become a shorthand, but it must be used carefully. And as cool as it sounds, omnitemporal, also deserves care, though it does not, to my knowledge, carry the same baggage.

    I am being picky about language here because panentheism is almost a default position in the modern world if not all-out pantheism. However we describe God, and I believe the WCF does it best, we must take care to understand God as distinct from his creation.
     
  13. BayouHuguenot

    BayouHuguenot Puritan Board Doctor

    Then I don't see the problem. This is really only a problem for Boethian accounts of time.
     
  14. jwithnell

    jwithnell Moderator Staff Member

    I missed this before my last post. Surely what you are reading and hearing are great blessings to you. Please don't let me discourage you in any way. I'll have to think on your resource question, although others might pop in with solid ideas first.
     
  15. BayouHuguenot

    BayouHuguenot Puritan Board Doctor

    Me, too. That's container language, which is why I thought his original post meant God is contained in time.
     
  16. SelfSuspendedDeuteronomy2929

    SelfSuspendedDeuteronomy2929 Puritan Board Freshman

    Yes of course the Creator is distinct from His Creation!

    You are probably much better at grammar than I ... so I apologize fo any errors in prepositions.

    But, for example, The Holy Spirit "indwells" us.

    Another example: Exod 40:34-35 Then the cloud covered the tabernacle of meeting, and the glory of the LORD filled the tabernacle. And Moses was not able to enter the tabernacle of meeting, because the cloud rested above it, and the glory of the LORD filled the tabernacle.

    And another: Psalm 139:7-8

    7 Whither shall I go from thy spirit? or whither shall I flee from thy presence?

    8 If I ascend up into heaven, thou art there: if I make my bed in hell, behold, thou art there.

    In closing, my understanding is that God is present everywhere in His creation ... but then also beyond His creation in His timeless self-existent uncreated being ... the great I AM which is incomprehensible to us because we are merely finite creatures bound in time.
     
  17. SelfSuspendedDeuteronomy2929

    SelfSuspendedDeuteronomy2929 Puritan Board Freshman

    Yes of course the Creator is distinct from His Creation! The creation can not contain God but He is everywhere present in every area of space and moment of time within His creation because the Bible says so (Psalm 139:7-8). I suppose God could just as easily have created another universe that He was not omnipresent within it, but He chose to have a people and a relationship with His creation. Thank God!

    You are probably much better at grammar than I ... so I apologize for any errors in prepositions.

    But, for example, The Holy Spirit "indwells" us.

    Another example: Exod 40:34-35 Then the cloud covered the tabernacle of meeting, and the glory of the LORD filled the tabernacle. And Moses was not able to enter the tabernacle of meeting, because the cloud rested above it, and the glory of the LORD filled the tabernacle.

    And another: Psalm 139:7-8


    7 Whither shall I go from thy spirit? or whither shall I flee from thy presence?

    8 If I ascend up into heaven, thou art there: if I make my bed in hell, behold, thou art there.

    In closing, my understanding is that God is present everywhere in His creation ... but then also beyond His creation in His timeless self-existent uncreated being ... the great I AM which is incomprehensible to us because we are merely finite creatures bound in time.
     
  18. SelfSuspendedDeuteronomy2929

    SelfSuspendedDeuteronomy2929 Puritan Board Freshman

    Thank you! Please feel free to contact me at any time with any suggestions.
     
  19. jwithnell

    jwithnell Moderator Staff Member

    Amen! Our Creator has bound us to himself by covenant. What an amazing thought.
     
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  20. TheInquirer

    TheInquirer Puritan Board Freshman

    John,

    Let me poke around and see what I can dig up (some others here may be able to point you to something right away).

    Last year I went through a doctrine of God study for a Sunday School class I was teaching and the systematic works were a great help in thinking through some of the questions you are raising. There's got to be some really helpful teaching in audio or video format somewhere.

    I highly commend you for all the study you've done, especially making the best of your tough situation! I'm sorry to hear about your illness :(. Let us know how we can best pray for you.
     
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  21. TheInquirer

    TheInquirer Puritan Board Freshman

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  22. SelfSuspendedDeuteronomy2929

    SelfSuspendedDeuteronomy2929 Puritan Board Freshman

    :amen::applause::banana::eureka::wave::) Wow!!! Thank you. I wish I had read these hours ago! It is 1:20 AM and I should be in bed, but I don't care!!! I am listening to them right now. I am familiar with James Dolezal. All of my lists of sermons are packed in boxes so I can't go look him up but I'm sure I have listened to him before.
     
  23. SelfSuspendedDeuteronomy2929

    SelfSuspendedDeuteronomy2929 Puritan Board Freshman

    Update #1
    I am through half of the first sermon and I wanted you to know that YES I have heard many sermons and teaching series about these topics, though it has been a few years and the terms aren't fresh so it is good to be hearing this again.
    I even went to different sermon series on Sermon Audio each time my memory refreshed to find where I had heard these things before. Many were in teaching series through the WCF which James Dolezal even read from at the beginning of this sermon.

    But the Scripture he reminded me of and quoted from is:

    Jeremiah 23:24 King James Version
    Can any hide himself in secret places that I shall not see him? saith the LORD. Do not I fill heaven and earth? saith the LORD.

    Before I return to the sermon I wish to share with you something that is profoundly difficult for me to find the words for so it will NOT be eloquent nor grammatically correct!

    Beyond God's creation there is no place or space or time. God invented the concepts of space and place and time, and realized them in His creation and for His creatures. But even though we dwell in space and place and time, God is omnipresent. The Apostle Paul even explained that God is our true "environment". From our perspective it seems like place and space and time is our environment but God sustains all that is so we exist in Him.
    And Pauls says
    Acts 17:28 For in him we live, and move, and have our being; as certain also of your own poets have said, For we are also his offspring.

    About 2 years ago on Facebook in a reformed group I remember writing a post about this scripture but all of my reference materials are packed in box right now. Paul was quoting a famous Greek philosopher if I recall correctly and some Christian theologians presume since the Areopagus philosophers would have been familiar with this saying they would have been stunned when Paul relates this to the Unknown God whom is the one & only true God.

    This is bringing back memories.

    What God's being and existence is like beyond his creation where there is no space or place or time is utterly beyond even my wildest imaginings. We are time bound finite creatures of limited intellectual capabilities.

    Have you ever red the book Flatland: A Romance of Many Dimensions
    ? Well, for example, what a 2 Dimensional being might think is a circle drawn around themselves could actually be the intersection of a 3 Dimensional hollow sphere intersecting the 2D being's plane of existence.

    That book many years ago, and some physics theories set me even more in AWE than I already was of how impossible it is for the 2D to imagine the 3D, and that for us to imagine God of infinite dimensions is and always will be impossible, even when we are glorified, even through all of eternity, there will be the absolute unknowable about our awesome God. Only the Triune God can understand Himself and His uncreated self-existence. Humans can never share the being, substance, essence and can therefore never understand.

    OK - now I am going to return to the sermon.
     
  24. BayouHuguenot

    BayouHuguenot Puritan Board Doctor

    Do you think that every interaction on Puritanboard is a formal debate?
     
  25. OPC'n

    OPC'n Puritan Board Doctor

    I would think that Him being outside of time necessarily means he inhabits all time all the time.
     
  26. RWD

    RWD Puritan Board Freshman

    That redemption is applied today would not seem to suggest that the accomplishment of redemption must, therefore, be ever present.

    For one thing, “Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us... So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation.” Hebrews 9:12,28

    What is continuous is the Mediator’s “appearing in our nature continually before the Father in heaven, in the merit of his obedience and sacrifice on earth...” WLC 55

    So, I would suggest to you that it’s not the past that is present but rather the benefits of the past that are present, which we receive in our effectual calling.

    Thoughts?
     
  27. alexandermsmith

    alexandermsmith Puritan Board Freshman

    I was just about to look to see if Dolezal had done a Reformed Forum on this because his shows on Simplicity and Impassibility were outstanding. I can't think of anyone I could recommend more (from living theologians) to speak on a subject like this. I don't know those two lectures, how technical they might be, but I'm sure they will be worth the effort.
     
  28. alexandermsmith

    alexandermsmith Puritan Board Freshman

    Yes and the OT believer looked forward to the (once and for all) sacrifice of Christ. So whilst it is true that they were accepted by God on the grounds of the sacrifice of Christ, it was in respect to their faith in the promised Messiah who was to come just as we are justified by our faith in the one who did come. All believers' sins are atoned for by the same sacrifice of Christ, whether it was still to take place or has taken place. After all, only a small number of believers actually lived at the time of the Crucifixion.

    "Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus: Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God; To declare, I say, at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus." Romans 3:24-26

    So Paul is saying that God forgave the sins of the OT believer because of their faith in the promised Messiah, and the actual historical sacrifice of Christ vindicated that forgiveness. (I think I'm reading that right?)

    God is outside of time so how He views the events on Earth is obviously different from how we do. In these circumstances it's always best to avoid trying to view things from God's perspective. The Bible teaches that the sacrifice of Christ was a once and for all event; that believers either looked forward or look back to it; that one is not justified until he receives faith from God (so no "eternal justification"); that the ongoing and eternal work of Christ as priest for His people occurs in Heaven, outwith time, not on Earth, within time; that believers who have died are presently with Christ and the reprobate are in Hell (they're not endlessly repeating the past, or the future for that matter).
     
  29. RWD

    RWD Puritan Board Freshman

    I’d suggest that the eternal decree must be distinguished from the actualizing of what it contemplates - namely, the works of creation, providence and grace. In other words, the eternal decree is not the same thing as God’s eternal plan and purpose actually coming to pass in time.

    Even from a creaturely perspective, isn’t it so that the things we plan, or think we plan (James 4:13-15), are not predicated upon the instantiation of those things (ie those things existing in their entirety), at the moment of our planning? How much more the case with God? Why would the eternal existence of the plan and purpose of God require its future enactment to exist eternally beside it? For one thing, wouldn’t that make us co-eternal with God (if not also, God’s thoughts contingent upon our existence)?
     
  30. BayouHuguenot

    BayouHuguenot Puritan Board Doctor

    The decree isn't the same thing as the execution of the decree. The decree is timeless. The execution of it is not. Hyper-Calvinists confuse this point.
     
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