Question For those of us that don't believe in the trinity. The next question is did Jesus pre-exist?

Lori Jane

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Grant 4 months ago

Hi Frank, for a while I believed that Colossians 1:16 referred to the Genesis creation as being through Jesus. I now believe that the Genesis creation was not on Paul’s radar.
For one thing we have to take into account is that Paul is talking about the “Risen” Jesus. I believe this is very important to understanding Colossians 1:13-23. He is talking about reconciling the cosmos in Christ Jesus. Into the kingdom of his beloved son. In 15 I believe he is talking about the risen Jesus as the firstborn of the new creation. After all, he was also the firstborn of the dead, the firstborn of many brothers and he was the first to be resurrected and ascend to heaven. , The firstborn of all creation. It’s interesting that in the NASB in 23b it reads...”and not moved away from the hope of the gospel that you have heard, which was proclaimed “ in all creation “under heaven, and of which I Paul, was made a minister. Sound familiar? Paul goes on in 16 about authority structures such as dominions, thrones, rulers. Now, I know there are various texts to 1:16 such as by him, through him, in him ( Jesus) I think “ in him” is the best suited or most accurate in English. Anyway, if you take the authority structure language and the fact that Paul says “all things IN heaven and ON earth I think one can reasonably say that the Genesis language is very much off his radar. THe scriptures also talk about that same sort of language in Ephesians 1:20-22, 1 Corinthians 15:24-28, 1 Peter 3:22, Matthew 28:18, Hebrews 1:3-4 &6 , 2:5-8, Revelation 11:15 . Paul even mentions the “ Power of darkness” earlier on in 13. In 18 Paul says that he ( Jesus) is the head of the body, the church, he is the beginning. The firstborn of the dead, so that he ( The risen Jesus) might come TO HAVE first place in everything. Now, if Jesus created the heavens and earth, why would Paul have said such a thing? And when Paul says he ( Jesus) is the beginning, the beginning of what? I believe he is talking about the new creation under Christ and his kingdom. Wrapping it up I think Paul is talking about the father reconciling mankind/ cosmos through Jesus. Oh I nearly forgot, 16 ( For by him) is a Trinitarian based translation. Paul uses “ in him” “ in Christ” dozens of times. The NIV has changed it to “in him” in their latest edition. In my view, the NIV is the most biased pro Trinitarian bible so kudos to them for changing it.
Peace

Hi Frank, are you referring more to Hebrews 1:2? If you are ...“Now at the end of these days he has spoken to us by means of a Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, and through whom he made the systems of things ( NWT) this translation is actually correct, it could also say “ages”. Most versions have “through whom he made the world, universe, earth. This is incorrect and misleading. In this regard, IMHO this verse does not point to a pre-existing Jesus because in these days he does speak to us by means of his son as opposed to the use of prophets in the OT

Yeah Lori, Trinitarians and others don’t like to touch other texts of ego eimi. John 9:9 is a good one

Yes very good references Lori. I’ve already read and listened to those. Kel has done some very useful and informative videos on his channel. Buzzard imho is very good to. I also like Dale Tuggy’s podcasts. He uses a slightly different perspective
 

Lori Jane

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Faithlife User 4 months ago

Very thought provoking comments and referenced resources everyone. Thank you!
I remembered reading some exposition by Eric H.H. Chang in his book "The Only Perfect Man", who was regarded as the trinitarians' trinitarian,such was his sincere belief. But when he wished to explain the trinity to the Muslim community he came to re-think his beliefs, and instead discovered the one true God, Yahweh. In doing this he also examined the explanations published by Watchtower, so I would like to share a portion of it with you:
"Supplementary Note: The Jehovah’s Witnesses on the
origins of Christ
One of the clearest explanations of what the Jehovah’s
Witnesses teach about the origins of Jesus Christ is found in
their own book, What Does the Bible Really Teach? (2005, 224
pages).
Here is a summary of the main points in chapter 4 of the
book (pp.37-45, “Who is Jesus Christ?”): Before the creation
of the universe, God created the Son of God, a “spirit creature”
who is neither God nor man, and lacks a physical body
(spirit creatures include angelic beings, p.96). Jesus is said to
be the “only begotten” Son because he was the only person
ever to be created directly by God; God then created the rest
of the universe through the Son. Before the Son was born into
the world, he was “the Word” who delivered God’s messages
to other sons of God, “both spirit and human”. When the
Word became flesh, the Son left heaven to live on earth as a
man. The spirit creature that had been the Son of God
became human when Jehovah transferred the Son’s life from
heaven to Mary’s womb. Jesus became the Messiah when he
was baptized in the latter part of 29 C.E. And after Jesus died,
“his heavenly Father resurrected him back to spirit life” on
the third day.
In an appendix, “Who is Michael the Archangel?”
(pp.218-219), the answer given is that “Jesus himself is the
archangel Michael”.
A serious error is the JWs’ denial of Jesus’ bodily resurrection.
They teach that Jesus was resurrected into an “invisible
spirit” with no human body (Let Your Name be Sanctified,
Chapter 3 — The First Pillar of Trinitarianism 183
p.266). Jesus “was not raised out of the grave a human creature,
but was raised a spirit” (Let God be True, p.272), for he
cannot “become a man once more” (You Can Live Forever in
Paradise on Earth, p.143). The seriousness of this error lies in
the denial of the humanity of Jesus: He is intrinsically a spirit
creature who is neither human nor divine, and was man only
temporarily during his time on earth. The resurrection of
Jesus is not a bodily resurrection but simply a return to Jesus’
intrinsic state as a spirit creature.
This error contradicts what the risen Jesus says: “See my
hands and my feet, that it is I myself. Touch me, and see. For
a spirit does not have flesh and bones as you see that I have.”
(Luke 24:39)
Many theological errors stem from the failure to see the
true humanity of Jesus Christ, whether we are talking about
the Gnostics, trinitarians, Arians, or the Jehovah’s Witnesses."

It astounded me how we were influenced to believe we were staunchly different to trinitarian teaching, yet used such reasoning as trinitarians did!

Is the idea of Jesus' humanity worth more consideration? Does it really detract from his importance, glory and place in our lives?
 

satsfacsin

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Frank Simon 4 months ago
Thank you Lori, This discussion appears to be the most popular discussion in this Faithlife group.

I have appreciated all of the comments posted so far and to date have focused all my arguments on all of the scriptures that either directly or indirectly refer to Jesus in pre-existing form being involved in creation of all things (John 1:3, Colossians 1:16, Hebrews 1: 2,10

I will also admit that I can see where the counter arguments are worth consideration. In one of his videos Anthony Buzzard admitted he does not have a lot of faith in the book of John, however he has a very high opinion that the words of Paul as being the "words of Jesus himself"

Now I move on to my next argument found in Philippians 2: 5-10 written of course by Paul and to wit should be acceptable to Sir Buzzard.

"Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross."

There might be some discussion on what it means "in the form of God" but it absolutely does not mean in the mind or thoughts of God. I could post pages of commentaries on what scholars say this phrase means, but instead post this link where you can read for yourself over 10 commentaries just on this subject.

https://biblehub.com/commentaries/philippians/2-6.htm

What ever your opinion "God's form" means to you, Philippians clearly states the mental attitude of the pre existing Christ (which requires intelligent decision making). He " did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped" This shows conscience thinking ability on the part of Christ.

After choosing not to seek or retain equality with God, then he makes a conscience decision to "empty himself" by taking the form of man. Notice the scripture states this was a decision Christ made, he was not forced, God did not make this decision,he volunteered, he "emptied himself" Then after becoming a man he further humbled himself to dying on the Cross.

Of course the point of this text was that Christ set an example of humility, however this demonstration of humility was a series of conscience decisions made by Christ before and after his human conception.

This now adds to the original argument he was involved in the creation of all things in heaven and earth.

There are more arguments to come but lets discuss this next.
 

satsfacsin

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Frank Simon 4 months ago

Grant You can find "him" in 30 translations here
https://biblehub.com/john/1-3.htm

So is which is correct "it" or "Him" ?

The answer is Colossians 1:16 For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him.

That is unless you consider Jesus an "it"
 

William

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William Kuevogah 4 months ago

The traditional belief that the Philippian hymn (Philippians 2:5-10, as scholars call it) is about Jesus's pre-existence has come under attack from recent scholarship. See the balanced discussion in "Abingdon New Testament Commentaries" (Philippians & Philemon by Carolyn Osiek). See also Dunn's "The Theology of Paul The Apostle" and his bibliography; "Born Before All Time? The Dispute Over Christ's Origin", Karl-Josef Kuschel.
I could put down my own thoughts on it but I wouldn't be able to properly articulate it.


I'd always taken it for granted that the traditional reading of the Philippian hymn (Philippians 2:5-10, as scholars call it) was the only legitimate reading. But as I later discovered, that reading has come under attack from recent scholarship. Many scholars (reputable ones too!) see the reading of pre-existence in the hymn as the reading of later (creedal) formulations into the text. They think it's an "Adam christology" or that it's about "the suffering Servant" of Isaiah. I haven't studied this subject well enough to give an informed opinion but I hope my little contribution helps.



See the balanced discussion in "Abingdon New Testament Commentaries" (Philippians & Philemon by Carolyn Osiek). See also Dunn's "The Theology of Paul The Apostle" and his bibliography; "Born Before All Time? The Dispute Over Christ's Origin", Karl-Josef Kuschel.

I could put down my own thoughts on it but I wouldn't be able to properly articulate it.

From the Adam christology perspective, here's how someone put it (in the book "The Only Perfect Man" already quoted by someone):

[quote begins]

Here is a summary of how Jesus became the perfect man as seen in Philippians 2:6-11:

1. Jesus, like Adam, was in the form of God (the image of God, the likeness of God)

2. Jesus, unlike Adam, did not seek to grasp at equality with God by force (that is, by disobedience, which is an act of rebellion)

3. Jesus humbled himself, embracing his humanity rather than seeking the glory of deity

4. Jesus sought servitude rather than dominance among his fellow men

5. Jesus determined to be faithful to God in every aspect of his life

6. Jesus was faithful unto death

7. … even death of the most ignominious type: death on a cross. [end of quote]



There are detailed exegetical discussions but I'm skipping them.
 

Lori Jane

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William said "I could put down my own thoughts on it but I wouldn't be able to properly articulate it."



I disagree - you are articulating just fine! Keep 'em coming!



I've been doing some more reading and am making a mind map of the issues and will post here when done - but know I'm reading/tracking this thread with great interest.



I want to understand my Messiah well!
 

Lori Jane

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Grant 4 months ago

Thanks for that Lori. I started reading that a few weeks ago and got to page 10 and then life got in the way. I read the rest yesterday. I also enjoyed one of Dustin’s videos on the matter...



Frank, firstly Colossians 1:16 is better correctly rendered as “ in him” ...” “by him”is a bad translation. Did you notice Paul says ..”IN heaven and ON earth? and then talks about authority structures. This is not Genesis language. BTW, I don’t consider Jesus to be an “it”. I do consider “the word” to be an it, however. What one has to remember is that Paul is talking about the risen Christ. When we just take a step back and consider that “the word” may not be Jesus but God’s will, his expression, his magnificence, his purpose and became the embodiment of Jesus. Jesus lived the word, spoke God’s words, and ate the word ( John 4:34) Yes. Jesus truly became the word in this sense.
 

satsfacsin

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Frank Simon 4 months ago
Grant you are correct about "in him" The Greek text literally reads


This may be hard to read in this post so here is a link to this page.
https://biblehub.com/interlinear/colossians/1-16.htm

Notice that the later part of the scripture continues to say "all things through him and unto him". The point under discussion here is did Jesus have a prehuman existence. I used Colossions to show the identical wording as used in John 1:3


Once again "all things through him came into being "

The Greek word translated "through" is dia used as in the formation of the word diameter (a line drawn through a circle)

Strong's Concordance
dia: through, on account of, because of
Original Word: διά
Part of Speech: Preposition
Transliteration: dia
Phonetic Spelling: (dee-ah')
Definition: through, on account of, because of

Usage: (a) gen: through, throughout, by the instrumentality of, (b) acc: through, on account of, by reason of, for the sake of, because of.
HELPS Word-studies
1223 diá (a preposition) – properly, across (to the other side), back-and-forth to go all the way through, "successfully across" ("thoroughly"). 1223 (diá) is also commonly used as a prefix and lend the same idea ("thoroughly," literally, "successfully" across to the other side).

[1223 (diá) is a root of the English term diameter ("across to the other side, through"). Before a vowel, dia is simply written di̓.]

"Through him" is once again used in Hebrews 1:2




To me, all creation coming through him would not be possible if HE did not exist.

Add to that Hebrews 1:10 where God says to the Son

And, “You, Lord, laid the foundation of the earth in the beginning, and the heavens are the work of your hands;

Comments please
 

William

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William Kuevogah 4 months ago

We're moving on to other topics so I'm sorry for the late post on Philippians 2:6-11.
Here's what I've been able to dig up on it; it's far from conclusive (and a bit lengthy!) but I hope it helps.
Karl-Josef Kuschel's analysis (not precise quotes) from "Born Before All Time? The Dispute over Christ's Origin":
So this text would be a piece of Adam christology, of the kind that also emerges in other contexts in the New Testament. It would be a further example of the widespread two-stage christology of the earliest Jewish-Christian communities (life-death/resurrection-exaltation of Jesus Christ) which would not be in the context of mythical tradition, but of Old Testament tradition.
So there is no question here of a pre-existent heavenly figure. Rather, Christ is the great contrasting figure to Adam.
To be specific, was it not Adam who wanted to become even more like God and thus succumbed to hybris and the primal sin? Was it not Adam who then as punishment had to live a kind of slave’s existence? And is not the Christ of this hymn precisely the opposite? Did he not give up his being in the image of God voluntarily? Did he not take on the form of a slave, not as a punishment, but voluntarily and obediently, so that he was then appointed by God to his heavenly dignity?
That, then, would be the contrast, the great antithesis in this hymn: Adam the audacious man—Christ the man who humbled himself; Adam the one who was humbled forcibly by God—Christ the man who voluntarily humbled himself before God; Adam the rebellious man—Christ the man who was utterly obedient; Adam the one who was ultimately cursed—Christ the one who was ultimately exalted; Adam who wanted to be like God—and in the end became dust; Christ, who was in the dust and indeed went to the cross—and is in the end the Lord over the cosmos? Thus in this hymn Christ seems to be the new Adam who has finally overcome the old Adam.
There is no question of a pre-existence of Christ with the scheme of a three-stage christology: pre-existence, humiliation, post-existence. Instead of this, the author celebrates the whole earthly-human life of Christ as a life of voluntary self-surrender to lowliness, as obedience which extends to the existence of a slave and a shameful death. In so doing he makes two things clear. It is only because of, only through lowliness that Jesus could also become the pantocrator; and conversely, the pantocrator bears for ever the features of the humbled man, indeed the crucified slave.

Jerome Murphy-O’Connor can therefore draw the basic conclusion:
1. As the Righteous Man par excellence Christ was the perfect image (eikon) of God. He was totally what God intended man to be. His sinless condition gave him the right to be treated as if he were God, that is, to enjoy the incorruptibility in which Adam was created. This right, however, he did not use to his own advantage, but he gave himself over to the consequences of a mode of existence that was not his by accepting the condition of a slave which involved suffering and death.
2. Though in his human nature Christ was identical with other men, he in fact differed from them because, unlike them, he had no need to be reconciled with God. Nonetheless, he humbled himself in obedience and accepted death.
3. Therefore, God exalted him above all the just who were promised a kingdom, and transferred to him the title and the authority that had hitherto been God’s alone. He is the Kyrios whom every voice must confess and to whom every knee must bow. Thus understood, the original hymn represents an attempt to define the uniqueness of Christ considered precisely as man. This is what one would expect at the beginning of Christian theology.

In this hymn a messianically orientated servant christology from Isa. 53 has quite decisively appeared alongside the Adam christology of the first lines (Phil. 2.6). This is also confirmed by the parallel statements about exaltation in Philippians and Isaiah. The servant of God in Isaiah will also one day be ‘exalted and lifted up’ (Isa.52.13), just as it is said of the Christ in this hymn that God has exalted him above all. Moreover Phil. 2.10 contains a clear allusion to Isa. 45.23: ‘To me every knee shall bow, every tongue shall swear.’ So it is only the post-existent, exalted Christ to whom here a dignity is attributed which otherwise is reserved only for God. And in fact allusions to other Old Testament texts seem to point in the same direction.
It is clear that the author of the Philippians hymn has constructed his poem exclusively from Old Testament material like Gen. 1; 3 and Isa. 53; 45. The sources are neither wisdom reflections on the righteous sufferer nor mythological speculations about a pre-existent divine being, but the messialogy of the book of Isaiah. So Phil. 2.6, 7 would not be speaking of a pre-existent heavenly being or of incarnation, but solely of the life of Christ on earth. The Christ as the true man in God’s purpose did not let himself be led astray like the first man but remained sinless; however, he did not do so as an ideal figure but as a real human being. He fulfils the role of the servant of God in Isa. 53. He is the man Jesus who was exalted because he humbled himself, and at the end will receive eschatological homage from all. This is clearly a Jewish-Christian interpretation of the career of Christ on the basis of a christological interpretation of the Old Testament.

The conclusion is that from this sequence it follows that Phil. 2.6 is primarily concerned with making statements about high status and by no means necessarily concerned with pre-existence. I do not think that it can be proved that this is a statement about incarnation. It may be much more about the contrast between election and sending by God on the one hand and obedience on the other.
The conclusion to be drawn from this is that one need not borrow extra-biblical notions and texts to understand Philippians 2. The Jewish background is enough for understanding this hymn and indeed for providing continuity with Aramaic Jewish Christianity in the proclamation of Christ. So ‘humbling himself, ‘emptying himself, is not to be understood as the act of a mythical pre-existent heavenly being, but as a qualification of the man Jesus. Like the Son of Man and Son of God of the earliest Aramaic-speaking Jewish-Christian community, he was understood and confessed as a lowly figure and as God’s plenipotentiary, as an eschatological representative, as the true human being and definitive messenger. Thus Phil. 2.6-11, this early text, would be in continuity with the Aramaic Jewish-Christian community in Jerusalem.

CAUTION: Any interpreter has to remain aware that what needs to be noted in theological interpretation is that the hymn itself speaks in the unguarded language of praise, not in the diction of an exact dogmatics which has been safeguarded on all sides.
This text is not a theological treatise but a poem, a great piece of poetry.
 

benadam1974

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Frank Simon 4 months ago
Thank you Lori, This discussion appears to be the most popular discussion in this Faithlife group.

I have appreciated all of the comments posted so far and to date have focused all my arguments on all of the scriptures that either directly or indirectly refer to Jesus in pre-existing form being involved in creation of all things (John 1:3, Colossians 1:16, Hebrews 1: 2,10

I will also admit that I can see where the counter arguments are worth consideration. In one of his videos Anthony Buzzard admitted he does not have a lot of faith in the book of John, however he has a very high opinion that the words of Paul as being the "words of Jesus himself"

Now I move on to my next argument found in Philippians 2: 5-10 written of course by Paul and to wit should be acceptable to Sir Buzzard.

"Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross."

There might be some discussion on what it means "in the form of God" but it absolutely does not mean in the mind or thoughts of God. I could post pages of commentaries on what scholars say this phrase means, but instead post this link where you can read for yourself over 10 commentaries just on this subject.

https://biblehub.com/commentaries/philippians/2-6.htm

What ever your opinion "God's form" means to you, Philippians clearly states the mental attitude of the pre existing Christ (which requires intelligent decision making). He " did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped" This shows conscience thinking ability on the part of Christ.

After choosing not to seek or retain equality with God, then he makes a conscience decision to "empty himself" by taking the form of man. Notice the scripture states this was a decision Christ made, he was not forced, God did not make this decision,he volunteered, he "emptied himself" Then after becoming a man he further humbled himself to dying on the Cross.

Of course the point of this text was that Christ set an example of humility, however this demonstration of humility was a series of conscience decisions made by Christ before and after his human conception.

This now adds to the original argument he was involved in the creation of all things in heaven and earth.

There are more arguments to come but lets discuss this next.
"In one of his videos Anthony Buzzard admitted he does not have a lot of faith in the book of John..."

Which video please?
 

benadam1974

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Jose Vincent 4 months ago

I had to go and search in my library of books as I had addressed these points many years ago. I found a book "The Doctrine of the Trinity" by Anthony F. Buzzard and Charles Hunting written in 1998. The two of them are viewed as the premier exponents of the Socinian view of Unitarianism. I did not realise that 20 years had passed.

As already stated in other posts the main idea promoted by the two authors is that all the verses show Foreordination rather than Preexistence of Jesus. In page 165, They link John 17:5 to 2 Corinthians 5:1, where Paul is referring to the promised reward in the future. They go onto say "When Jesus says that he "had" the glory for which he now prays (John 17:5), he is merely asking for the glory which he knew was prepared for him by God from the beginning. That glory existed in God's plan and in that sense Jesus already "had"it. We note that Jesus did not say "Give me back" or "restore to me the glory which I had when I was alive with you before my birth."
There are two lines of arguments that Buzzard and Hunting (B&H) are using to support their view:
  1. What Jesus said in John 17:5 or did not say.
  2. The comparison of "had" in John 17:5 and 2 Corinthians 5:1.

I will address each point separately.


  1. What Jesus said in John 17:5 or did not say.

John 17:5 So now you, Father, glorify me alongside yourself with the glory that I had alongside you before the world was. (NWT Reference Bible 1984)

John 17:5 Now, Father, glorify Me together with Yourself, with the glory which I had with You before the world was. (NASB Strong's)

John 17:5 And now, Father, you glorify me ⌊at your side⌋b with the glory that I had ⌊at your side] before the world existed. (Lexham English Bible).

A quick glance will show that there is no controversy on translation and all three use the "I had".

B&H say: Jesus did not say, “restore to me the glory which I had
Jesus words:glorify me alongside yourself with the glory that I had.”

B&H say: Jesus did not say, I was alive with you before my birth
Jesus words: I had alongside you before the world was.

What B&H claims that Jesus did not say is actually what he said! Clearly, they have a made a major faux pas. Please note that in translation terms this is not a problematic verse. Jesus speaks to the Father and references his life “before the world was.” He uses first-person form of the verb for “have” (Greek: eichon [“the glory that I had”]), from the preposition “with” (Greek: para), and from the second-person pronoun in the dative case (Greek: soi) to refers to his “life” . This correlates to Philippians 2:5-9, Proverbs 30:4 and John 1:1 about his prehuman existence.

2 The comparison of "had" in John 17:5 and 2 Corinthians 5:1.
B&H try to compare Jesus’ use of “had” (“the glory I had”) with Paul’s words in 2 Corinthians 5:1, “For we know that if our earthly house, this tent, should be dissolved, we are to have a building from God, a house not made with hands, everlasting in the heavens.” NWT Reference 1984

The problem with comparing John 17:5 and 2 Corinthians 5:1 in this way is that the verb for “have” is in the present form in 2 Corinthians 5:1, showing that it is something “laid up for him in God’s plan.” In John 17:5 John uses a past verb form for what Jesus at one time “had,” does not have now (at the time of the speech events of John 17:5), but that Jesus wants again! If the “glory” that Jesus “had” according to John 17:5 is what belonged to Jesus already (because it “existed in God’s plan”), then John could simply have used the present form of the verb like Paul did in 2 Corinthians 5:1.

This addresses the two arguments and they have faults in them. For this verse their position of foreknowledge vs pre-existence of Jesus is incorrect.

Finally, a natural reading in context of John 17 makes it clear that Jesus is referring to a prehuman existence.

Hope that helps.
Jose, thanks for your lengthy analysis and if I may ask.....

How do you explain Jesus saying in vv. 22, 24 that that same glory has been given to him and is now giving it to others?
 

benadam1974

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Frank Simon 4 months ago

Thank you William for another good post on the subject. In an earlier post I mentioned that there may be a lot of discussion on who or what is the Word in John. I am still waiting for a reply from the group on Colossions 1:16 and Hebrews 1 that state Jesus was involved in creating everything in heaven and earth. He had to have a prehuman existence if he was there for creation.

Thanks for you comments.
For Hebrews 1.10 see:
And Col 1.16:
 

LeeB

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Frank Simon 4 months ago
Thank you Lori, This discussion appears to be the most popular discussion in this Faithlife group.

I have appreciated all of the comments posted so far and to date have focused all my arguments on all of the scriptures that either directly or indirectly refer to Jesus in pre-existing form being involved in creation of all things (John 1:3, Colossians 1:16, Hebrews 1: 2,10

I will also admit that I can see where the counter arguments are worth consideration. In one of his videos Anthony Buzzard admitted he does not have a lot of faith in the book of John, however he has a very high opinion that the words of Paul as being the "words of Jesus himself"

Now I move on to my next argument found in Philippians 2: 5-10 written of course by Paul and to wit should be acceptable to Sir Buzzard.

"Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross."

There might be some discussion on what it means "in the form of God" but it absolutely does not mean in the mind or thoughts of God. I could post pages of commentaries on what scholars say this phrase means, but instead post this link where you can read for yourself over 10 commentaries just on this subject.

https://biblehub.com/commentaries/philippians/2-6.htm

What ever your opinion "God's form" means to you, Philippians clearly states the mental attitude of the pre existing Christ (which requires intelligent decision making). He " did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped" This shows conscience thinking ability on the part of Christ.

After choosing not to seek or retain equality with God, then he makes a conscience decision to "empty himself" by taking the form of man. Notice the scripture states this was a decision Christ made, he was not forced, God did not make this decision,he volunteered, he "emptied himself" Then after becoming a man he further humbled himself to dying on the Cross.

Of course the point of this text was that Christ set an example of humility, however this demonstration of humility was a series of conscience decisions made by Christ before and after his human conception.

This now adds to the original argument he was involved in the creation of all things in heaven and earth.

There are more arguments to come but lets discuss this next.
I do not know what your view on the soul is, is it a third part of man or is it the total man. Some believe the soul is immortal some do not. I hold to the idea the soul is the complete human, not a third part. I see the soul as mortal as the soul that sins will die. Death is the absolute end of life, not life in another place, heaven or hell. Trinitarians make salvation a place to live the immortality you were created with rather than life itself. Consider Jesus, he had to die, his life had to end so as to provide for humanity the hope of salvation. However if death is not really death but life in another place then Jesus did not really die and if Jesus was indeed God Almighty he could not die therefore where is the sacrifice for sin. Is Jesus God in the flesh ? If he is then he had to be Father, Son and Holy Spirit in the flesh because the three cannot be separated else you would have more than one God. If death is indeed the total and complete end of life, which it is, and Jesus really did die then God is dead, that is Father, Son and Holy Spirit are all dead and therefore we are all dead with them.
 

mavodo123

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May 8, 2024
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Proverbs JPS Hebrew 1916 translation
8:22.,23.,24.,25.,26.,27.,28.,29.,30.,31.,32.,33.,34.,35.,36.
22. The LORD made me as the beginning of His way, the first of His works of old. 23. I was set up from everlasting, from the beginning, or ever the earth was. 24. When there were no depths, I was brought forth; when there were no fountains abounding with water. 25. Before the mountains were settled, before the hills was I brought forth; 26. While as yet He had not made the earth, nor the fields, nor the beginning of the dust of the world. 27. When He established the heavens, I was there; when He set a circle upon the face of the deep, 28. When He made firm the skies above, when the fountains of the deep showed their might, 29. When He gave to the sea His decree, that the waters should not transgress His commandment, when He appointed the foundations of the earth; 30. Then I was by Him, as a nursling; and I was daily all delight, playing always before Him, 31. Playing in His habitable earth, and my delights are with the sons of men. 32. Now therefore, ye children, hearken unto me; for happy are they that keep my ways. 33. Hear instruction, and be wise, and refuse it not. 34. Happy is the man that hearkeneth to me, watching daily at my gates, waiting at the posts of my doors. 35. For whoso findeth me findeth life, and obtaineth favour of the LORD. 36. But he that misseth me wrongeth his own soul; all they that hate me love death.'

So this answers your question from the Bible the Jesus not always exsisted but was made the first before all of creation (to be the only son of God) and that it was the one and only Magesty LORD God who made everything also after him however it does also say that the delights of the sons of man where Jesus' and so in genesis 1:26 it said that Elohym ( Magestrate- [ Jesus]) said let us make man in our image and it's evident that our wonderful messiah was allowed to ask the one and only to make mankind together in information only and so the one and only Magesty LORD God made us because.that is what genesis 2 says and so that is why our wonderful messiah could take part responsibility for what the one and only Magesty LORD God and why Jesus could also be given authority over humans to judge us and could also pay for our punishment that the one and only Magesty LORD God said law breakers needed for breaking His law.