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Eternal creation

Eternal creation September 2, 2010

Creation, Gregory of Nyssa insists, is not eternal: “For we have learned that the heaven and the earth were not from eternity, and will not last to eternity, and thus it is hence clear that those things are both started from some beginning, and will surely cease at some end.”

On the other hand: “the Divine Nature, being limited in no respect, but passing all limitations on every side in its infinity, is far removed from those marks which we find in creation.”

But then: “that power which is without interval, without quantity, without circumscription, having in itself all the ages and all the creation that has taken place in them , and over-passing at all points, by virtue of the infinity of its own nature, the unmeasured extent of the ages, either has no mark which indicates its nature, or has one of an entirely different sort, and not that which the creation has.”

That is, while creation is not eternal, all the ages and intervals that make up the creation are contained within the eternal, infinite, divine nature.  Creation is pre-contained in God.  How, indeed, could it be otherwise.

As a side note: Note the unargued movement from talk about “the Divine Nature” to talk about “that power.”  A point developed well by Rene Michel Barnes, and one that warms the heart of Robert Jenson.


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