That may seem like a bizarre question, but it’s one I’ve thought about for a while. In the Bible, the Christian god claims to have always existed. Have you ever thought through what that would be like?
If you’ve spent much time around young children — say the 3 to 4 year old range — you’ll know that they have no concept of something happening before their existence. For instance, my middle child likes to watch old home movies from when she was a baby, and when she does, my youngest child always asks where he was during whatever event we’re watching. We tell him that he wasn’t born yet, but you can tell that doesn’t really register with him. He exists now… surely he existed then?
That got me thinking what it must be like to be God. If you’re the “first cause,” then before you created anything, there would be nothing (presumably). So if you’re simply an awareness surrounded by nothing, how do you know that nothing predates you? How can you mark the passage of eternity in a meaningful enough way to know that something didn’t cause you? It might be true — but how would you ever know?
It seems to me it’s the one thing God could not possibly know. To claim that nothing came before him would either be a lie, or it would be a display of the same kind of ignorance a child possesses when he’s incapable of imagining a time before his own existence.
Well, either that, or someone just made the whole thing up… 🙂