Mere Christianity, Book Four, Chapter 3: “Time and Beyond Time”

This chapter discusses Time as it relates to Prayer.

We live through time. In this reality, we flow in one direction with time. All that is behind us is lost to us, except in our memory. All that is before us is unknown to us. What Lewis is attempting to address here is, “How can God listen to everyone in the world praying at the same time?”

  • God created time
  • God exists beyond time (“outside and above”)
  • God is not restricted to time
  • We live in this tiny window of Now, the past behind us, the future before us
  • God can see all of the “Now’s” all of all time
  • Example of the author writing the book with the character in the book living in a separate, independent timeline.
  • “But God has no history. He is too completely real to have one.”
  • In human language we use terms like “foreknowledge,” and “foresaw,” and “predestined.”
    • These terms are all locked into human reason and human language.
    • We really don’t have language to adequately deal with God’s presence outside of time.
    • Because of God’s presence beyond time, He is able to tell the prophets what is in their future because it is not future to God, but present reality.
    • This allows a view of foreknowledge and predestination that does not violate, in any way, free will and human responsibility.
    • Humans retain personal responsibility in light of “predestination” without the two conflicting

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Parent: Mere Christianity: Leaders’ Notes Series

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