Was there a point that only God existed?


But there is a duration. At one point in time, God was not man. At another point in time, God came down from heaven and became man.


This is part of the mystery of the Incarnation, that the Unchanging took on a changeable nature.

Jesus Christ, the same yesterday, today and forever, (Heb 13:8) has died, been buried, and raised on the 3rd day.(I Cor 15:3-4)


My apologies. I was not aware my wording was ambiguous.

Time-as-we-know-it did not exist before creation. We know time as something measured by an observer, ie an interaction between at least two. If there is no way to observe, no materiality, there is no time.

Angels, as messengers, must have some way of communicating which would include observing time. But it is not like time as we know it as it is immaterial. It may be analogous to our time, but it is not the same.


Time is significant in your remarks about creation. My post presents that time is a logical property of appearing in the world, in one theory. That is not the traditional way of thinking. Time is not normally conceived of logically.


Was there a point that only God existed? The answer is clearly no.
2 Corinthians 4:18 states that there are eternal things that are not seen.

While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen, are temporal; but the things which are not seen, are eternal.

The unseen eternal things existed with God. I hope this helps…


No need to apologize. We are just giving our views on the issue at hand which concerns time.

What do you mean by creation. Do you mean the creation of angels or do you mean the creation of the material universe?

How do you know that it is not the same? It seems to me that if events progress from the past into the future, then there is time.


In a temporal context, you might be correct. The problem is, we aren’t talking about a temporal context. Therefore, your point doesn’t hold. In an eternal, timeless context, I would assert that the “timeless state” is not “one point.”

The Catechism:

“Spiritual, non-corporeal” means “not part of the physical universe.” If not part of the physical universe, then timeless.

On one hand, the assertions of the Catholic Church. On the other, the assertion of @AlNg. I think I’ll take the assertions of the Church, thank you very much. :wink:

One event: a choice. No progression.


You’re talking inside the universe? Sure. You’re not talking about outside the universe, though, where there is no ‘time’.


False. The human soul is not part of the physical universe, and yet it progresses in time. At baptism, our soul is spotless, as time progresses, it becomes stained with sin which is then washed away at least partially by Reconciliation and indulgences.


Fuzzy thinking. Which universe are you talking about? The physical universe or the universe of all created beings.


Actually, a human is a “body/soul composite”. Therefore, the soul participates in the physical universe. Nice try, though. :wink:

Does the soul sin, or does the person sin? The person exists in the universe, and therefore, the person is subject to time.

The only universe that we’re talking about: the physical universe.

The “universe of all created beings” is a set. In other words, an abstraction. Not the same thing at all. :roll_eyes:


Who says so? There was no time until time was created. You have to consider the transcendent here - beyond us and our existential limitations.


Angels also participate in the physical universe.

The question is whether or not the human soul is part of the physical universe. Satan participates in the physical universe. In fact, the prayer to St. Michael the Archangel makes that clear and as well the temptations of Satan to Adam and Eve and as well to many humans today. The fact that Satan participates in the physical universe, then does not mean that Satan is part of the physical universe. Satan is not a material being.

Fuzzy thinking. The human person is at once corporeal and spiritual. However, the human soul does not perish when it separates from the body at death, indicating that it is not part of the physical universe. The soul of man is raised to a supernatual non physical end.

You are in error if you believe that the physical universe is the only universe. There is a larger universe which includes the angels and the demons. Although angels may participate in the physical universe, they are non-material beings and they can live on a higher plane than the physical universe. Nevertheless, there is still a time component to this higher plane as is seen from the fact that events progress in this plane.
Also, you have not shown that the Roman Catholic church infallibly teaches that there is no time for angels. All you have shown is that the Church teaches that spiritual non material beings exist. We knew that already, and we also know from the teachings of the Roman Catholic Church that events have progressed in the lives of the angels. At one point in time, the angels were all with God. As events progressed, some of the angels chose to disobey God. Since events have progressed from the past to the future in their lives, it must be concluded that according to the agreed upon definition of time, that they live in time, even though they are incorporeal. Unless, now at the last minute, you are going to change the definition of time which was agreed to above.


Is the point a point in space-time? Then space-time has to exist. Is the point a point in time? Then time has to exist. Is the point a point in Asgard? Then Asgard has to exist. Is the point a point in the Dreamtime? Then the Dreamtime has to exist.

Your “point” has to be measured against something, and it is that something which must exist. A point has to be defined with reference to some external system.



True. You must consider the way in which they do, however.

They don’t have a physical nature. They don’t have a physical body. They don’t have a physical existence.

Therefore, when they participate, it’s because God wills them to participate. So, for the sake of His will, He gives them a physical appearance so that they can be perceived by humans. This is not their nature however – it’s only temporary.

Same with Satan: spiritual, not physical. Not a particular physical form.

And we’ve already given that answer, from the mind of the Church. A person is not a body who owns a soul, or a soul who possesses a body. A person is a composite of body and soul. And, in that way – in that human nature – an ensouled person exists in time.

Ahh… now I get it. That’s your catch phrase for “I don’t agree with the implications of your assertion!” :rofl:

There you go! Now you’ve got it! Except… we’re a sort of amalgam – not of ‘parts’, per se, but a unified whole.

So… the great sadness of the reality of physical death – which, we’re taught, wasn’t what God had in mind for humanity – is that it tears our very nature apart. It very literally rends soul from body. And, of course, when we just have ‘soul’, then we’re not physical anymore. So… yeah: when just soul, then not part of the physical universe anymore.

You’re just bending definitions now, in order to suit your argument. Yes, angels are part of reality. When we use the term “universe”, though, in a normative sense, we’re talking about the physical universe that God created. If you want to use the term in a novel and personal way, fine… just don’t use your term with a standard context and expect it to make sense or receive our consent! :wink:

See what you did there? You went from Church teachings (angels are purely spiritual; they interact with humans; they exist in a ‘higher plane’), and then made a bald assertion, without any backing, from your personal opinion (there is time in heaven). OK… let’s see the support for that assertion, then!


That’s just the point: there’s no ‘past’ or ‘future’ for angels. At their creation, they’re given a choice. Having made it, they live in its effects for eternity. Not 10 years, or 10 millennia, but eternity… since they’re eternal. And outside of time. :+1:

Did we agree that the definition of time is “the measure of change in physical things”? If so, I’m not changing any definition. In fact, that’s the Aristotelian definition I’ve held to all along. :wink:


I’ve been thinking. I used to believe that time is simply the measure of change but I now think, for about five minutes actually, that the definition must be one of hierarchy. So I’m thinking that duration must be at the primary level and measure of change at the next level…I realise that I’m saying you’re both right and I really don’t mean to but…

Before physical things existed there was a duration surely, hard to imagine I know, following this duration things came into existence and from that point on the measurement of change makes sense but does not override the concept of duration which I see as a fundamental.

In a universe of no material change the concept of duration makes sense, once change begins then you can see it as a measurement of change but even so the changes taking place have duration.


What is “duration” other than “measure of change”, though? It sounds like a distinction without a difference… :thinking:

This makes sense only if you try to impose our inside-of-the-physical-universe and in-a-temporal-framework experience on God. It just doesn’t work. It’s really difficult to let go of those concepts – after all, our entire lives are embued in them! – but we have to, if we wish to get a better grip on understanding what it means to be “outside” the universe.

So, no “duration” in the way we understand it.

It still looks like you’re imposing the notion of time on a timeless state. If you’re willing to do that – to pretend that a circle is a square, and measure the length of its ‘side’ – then you’ll see ‘duration’. (Remember – ask yourself “what’s the measure of ‘duration’?” If it’s “seconds, minutes, hours, days, years”, then you’re really talking about the temporal dimension of our physical universe, and therefore, you’re not talking about eternity.)


I’m a simple man @Gorgias .
I’m looking at it from outside of the universe, prior to the Big Bang, the Big Bang happened at a moment, a single instance but there must have been a prior instance of course, therefore there was a duration however small before the Big Bang. Before the Big Bang we could surmise that nothing existed at all, therefore there was no material change, then …there was, and from that point material change. So duration existed before material change.

(Unless you’re talking about a change of state, from nothing to something, if you are then surely it’s a question of semantics, we don’t disagree at all.)


Let’s get a little more precise, though. The Big Bang happens somewhere, right? At the very least, it happens in a context. I would argue that this context is the framework for the physical universe, and is distinct from God and eternity. So, we’re still in the same situation: inside the framework, we have the universe and outside it, we have God. Inside it, we have time (and therefore, ‘duration’), and outside it, we have timeless eternity.

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