It’s difficult for FINITE human beings to fully comprehend an INFINITE concept. What I mean is that it is tough for us to fully imagine something that has always been, and has never had a “beginning”, in itself. This is the concept of eternity. God is eternal. He always WAS. And He always WILL BE.
John 1:1 says, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” This verse is talking about the beginning of time and space as human beings are concerned. It DOES NOT mean when God began, since God ALWAYS was. However, in OUR beginnings, the Word (God) was there. God is not limited by space and time, as we know it. “Jesus Christ (The Word) is the same yesterday and today and forever.” (Hebrews 13:8)
In the Gospel of John, the Pharisees are talking with Jesus regarding Abraham, from the Old Testament. Jesus told them, “Your father Abraham rejoiced at the thought of seeing my day; he saw it and was glad.” (John 8:56). The Jews mocked Him and said, “You are not fifty years old, and You have seen Abraham!” Jesus replied, “I tell you the truth, before Abraham was born, I am!” (John 8:57-58) Jesus is telling the people, while Abraham WAS alive on this earth, he longed to see the day of Jesus on the earth. And though Abraham had been physically dead when the day did arrive, he DID see it because he was ALIVE in Heaven, and he was glad! This is additional proof of the resurrection of the Saints.
Jesus was saying, yes I am here today, but by the way, before Abraham was born a long, long time ago…I already am! Notice Jesus did not say, I already WAS…but I already AM…the present tense of the word, spoken about the past! This is an amazing concept. God does not speak of Himself in past tense, because past, present and future are all the same to Him. These “tenses” are used in the Word for OUR benefit. Past, present, and future are all rolled into one with God. That’s how He can say “I am” when talking about the past, instead of saying, “I was”. To say, “was” would mean that He ceased to exist. “Was” relates to something that “is no more”. This will NEVER be the case with God.
John the Baptist describes Jesus in a unique way, and relates to the Lord’s limitless use of time. While testifying about Jesus, John pointed Him out to the crowd and said, “This was He of Whom I said, ‘He Who comes after me has surpassed me because He was before me.” (John 1:15) Did you catch that? He said, this man, Who comes AFTER me, has surpassed me because He WAS BEFORE me. Jesus was both, BEFORE and AFTER John the Baptist.
Isn’t it comforting as believers to know that Jesus ALWAYS was, and ALWAYS will be? This is why He told us to store our treasures in Heaven, instead of down here on earth. We will not be here for long. We are travelers through this time and space…”aliens and strangers in the world.” (1Peter 2:11) Unfortunately, we humans (even Christians) primarily focus on the current, materialistic world and seem to forget what is truly important, which is eternity. It may sound a little out there, but we are eternal beings, on a short layover on this planet. Though we did have a beginning, we will have no end. As sincere followers of Christ, we have been BORN AGAIN as spiritual children, to an eternal Heavenly Father…and in this, we rejoice! (Feel free to email Chris Christensen at: Chris@ChristensenMediaGroup.com)