“Bigger than Bethlehem” - The Pre-existence of Christ
During the Christmas season, Christians from all over the world would take the time to celebrate with their families and friends. They would exchange gifts and sing carols. Churches would recreate and dramatize the nativity scene.
Although COVID-19 has seriously dampened the celebrations this year, nevertheless, the spirit of the season is still high on the agenda in the hearts of many.
We are dealing with His pre-existence here - His position in Heaven before He came to the earth. Many people (Christians) are not aware that Jesus existed with God before he was born to Mary.
Throughout the Old and New Testament, we see this fact highlighted. In 1 Corinthians 10:4, the Apostle Paul wrote, “and all of them drank the same spiritual water. For they drank from the spiritual rock that travelled with them, and that rock was Christ.
This is one example of how the Lord existed before His Birth. He was with Israel throughout the wilderness journey to the Promised Land.
The Apostle John magnified His pre-existence in John 1:1-4. "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him, all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind."
The phrase, "in the beginning was the Word", has two key words in it that requires some explanation. The word “beginning” and “Word.” John is referring here to a "beginning" that was before the beginning of Genesis 1:1.
The Genesis beginning began creation, but Christ was before this beginning and hence before creation. The other key word in the phrase is “Word” which is a reference to Jesus. Jesus was in existence before anything was created.
John continues to elaborate, “And the Word was with God” - God the Father, and the Word (Jesus) co-existed in Heaven before creation. Although the Holy Spirit is not mentioned at this point, He existed nonetheless with the Father and the Word.
There are several evidences in Scripture to verify this fact. We see here the presence of the Triune God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit in heaven, before the foundation of the world.
John went on to make an emphatic statement, which has been a source of great controversy over the centuries. “And the Word was God” This was a deliberate statement of fact. Other sections of the New Testament provide more clarity to this fact.
Paul in 1 Timothy 3:16 made this declaration, “And without controversy, great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory”.
John made it very clear that the “Word” (Jesus) was with God from the very beginning. In fact, He was not only present at creation (Genesis 1:1), but He was actively involved in creation. He made all things and without Him was not anything made that was made, according to the Scriptures.
In the case of human beings, there is no existence prior to birth. Man cannot claim a pre-existence prior to birth nor can angels make such a claim. Angels were created by God and they cannot pro-create. God never intended for Angels to reproduce after their kind.
In fact, only man was given that commission. It was allotted to man to be fruitful, multiply, and fill the earth. In the case of Jesus, however, He existed with God in heaven before He took human form through birth.
Paul Mursalin is a member of the International Board of Barnabas Fund from Guyana
Photo contributed by LUMO project
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