Volume 47, Issue 1/2, Spring/Summer-Fall/Winter 2018
Jon Paul Sydnor
God Is Not Eternal, Nor Are We
On the Blessedness of Being in Time
The association of God with eternity, and eternity with timelessness, harms Christian spiritual life. If eternity is superior to time, then God’s placement of human beings within time is ungenerous. Fortunately, the Christian concept of God as triune commends divine becoming through time. In particular, the social Trinitarian view that God is three persons united through love demands divine temporality. Relationality relies on change for its content. So, for God to be internally related, God must be internally timeful. Moreover, to assert that the Trinitarian persons relate through time places a high value on human relationships. Created in the image of God, we are called to create ever-closer community through time. This effort sanctifies time, rendering kairos of chronos. Kairos is the experience of time as sacred, whereas chronos is the experience of time as purposeless. For the three persons of the Trinity, all time is kairos. For us, every moment contains the potential for kairos because God sustains the universe continually. Through faith, the moment-by-moment progression of time can become the grace-by-grace gift of God.