Was there a time that Christ did not exist?

It is argued that Christ does not have life inherent but that life is derived or was given. In other words, Christ was literally given life to have in himself. Therefore at a point in time he did not exist. In this, we shall examine whether Christ was truly self existent.

The following has been placed at the forefront as a passage that can be used to proclaim Christ non-existent at one point in time.

John 5:26, "For as the Father hath life in himself; so hath he given to the Son to have life in himself; "

The next verse provides the essential information. Here are verses 26 and 27: “26For as the Father hath life in himself; so hath he given to the Son to have life in himself; 27And hath given him authority to execute judgment also, because he is the Son of man.” The conjunction “And” and the use of the adverb “also,” meaning “in addition to,” in verse 27, indicate that the two verses are connected and that having life in himself and authority to execute judgment are related to His status as the “Son of man” in verse 27. This text therefore cannot apply to the pre-existence of Christ. In John 5:26, Jesus is speaking of conditions that apply in His incarnation.

(Source: remantofgod.org) - In STRONG'S Concordance we see the word "HAVE or granted" (#2192) can be translated as, "to hold" "keep" or even "possess." If any of these definitions are used, STRONG'S stresses the point further by stating it is, "used of those joined to any one by the bonds of natural blood or marriage or friendship or duty or law etc, of attendance or companionship " This leads me to ask the question... Are not the Father and Son in agreement and joined as "natural blood" or a as a "friendship, duty, law, or companionship?" In other words, would it not be better understood to say the Father is in agreement that Jesus will use the life already within Himself as a Creator God to bring His children from the grave on that great and dreadful day? If we read just a verse preceding the passage we see this to be the context...

John 5:25-26, "Verily, verily, I say unto you, The hour is coming, and now is, when the dead shall hear the voice of the Son of God: and they that hear shall live. 26 For as the Father hath life in himself; so hath he given to the Son to have life in himself; ;"

The Word clearly says the dead in Christ will come to a day where they will actually hear the voice of the Creator, (Jesus) and what happens when they hear this wonderful voice? The Word says they "will live" does it not? And then it goes on to say that they live because the Father is already in agreement with His Son that by the sound of His voice they shall live. What else can they do but respond to such a voice that created them on day one anyway. This is why this wonderful Saviour called Lazarus BY NAME on that day. Had Jesus just said "come forth" ALL the graves would have ripped open because He is the source of all life on earth!

Another way to translate the passage using the Greek would be to say, "For as the Father hath life in himself; so hath he given to the Son to be the source of life in himself." This is more plausible to embrace because the context of the preceding and following verses makes better sense when stated in this way. (Note: The above portion was sourced from the remnantofgod.org; please note that we do not agree with everything presented in this site)

Are the angels dependent on God the Father for their life? Their life is God’s? Where as on Christ, there is no such yoke?

“He [Christ] was equal with God, infinite and omnipotent. He was above all finite requirements. He was Himself the law in character. Of the highest angels it could not be said that they had never borne a yoke. The angels all bear the yoke of dependence, the yoke of obedience . . Not one of the angels could become a substitute and surety for the human race, for their life is God’s; they could not surrender it. On Christ alone the human family depended for their existence. He is the eternal, selfexistent Son, on whom no yoke had come . . He could say that which not the highest angel could say—‘I have power over My own life. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again.”— 12 Manuscript Release 395 (Manuscript 101, 1897).

Is the life in Christ inherent? But this life is not inherent in man?

“ ‘In Him [Jesus] was life; and the life was the light of men.’ It is not physical life that is here specified, but [immortality], the life which is exclusively the property of God. The Word, who was with God, and who was God, had this life. Physical life is something which each individual receives. It is not eternal or immortal; for God, the life-giver takes it again . . But the life of Christ was unborrowed. No one can take this life from Him. ‘I lay it down of Myself,’ He said. In Him was life, original, unborrowed, underived. This life is not inherent in man. He can possess it only through Christ.”—5 Bible Commentary,1130 (1 Selected Messages, 296-297).

"While He took upon Him humanity, it was a life taken in union with Deity. He could lay down His life as priest and also victim. He possessed in Himself power to lay it down and take it up again." 7BC 933.

Was the life of Christ borrowed or unborrowed?

“Jesus declared, ‘I am the resurrection and the life.’ In Christ is life, original, unborrowed, underived. ‘He that hath the son hath life’ (1 Jn 5:12). The divinity of Christ is the believer’s assurance of eternal life . . “To the Saviour’s words, ‘Believest thou?’ Martha responded, ‘Yea, Lord: I believe that Thou art the Christ, the Son of God, which should come into the world.’ She did not comprehend in all their significance the words spoken by Christ, but she confessed her faith in His divinity, and her confidence that He was able to perform whatever it pleased Him to do.”— Desire of Ages, 530.

Our critics say "IN Christ WAS life original, unborrowed and underived; but that life inherent was given by the Father to Him as part of His inheritance based on John 5:26. However, if Christ was given inherent life to have in himself, then that life that he received cannot be original, but borrowed or derived! John 5:26 simply states that the Father hath life in himself; so hath he given to the Son to be the source of life in himself. Now notice the following statement:

A human being lives, but his is a given life, a life that will be quenched. 'What is your life? It is even vapor, that appeareth for a little time , and then vanisheth away.' But Christ's life is not a vapor; it is never-ending, a life existing before the worlds were made."—The Signs of the Times, June 17, 1897 , p. 5.

Note that the above statement is comparing human life as opposed to Christ's life. Human life is a "given life" as opposed to Christ's life which is existing [not given]. It would't make sense to say that Christ came in to existence [life given] sometime in eternity and his life will now be never ending, since the same could be said of God's unfallen angels. Therefore Christ is special! He is self existent! Notice that Ellen White confirms that Jesus is the ever-living Almighty:

What a Savior we have! it was he that revealed himself to John on the Isle of Patmos, and proclaimed, "I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty." None but just such an ever-living, mighty God, could pay the ransom to save sinners from going down into the pit of death.” -RH, February 18, 1896 par. 4

Is Christ self existent? Was there a time when we he was not in close fellowship with the eternal God?

“Christ is the pre-existent, self-existent Son of God . . In speaking of His pre-existence, Christ carries the mind back through dateless ages. He assures us that there never was a time when He was not in close fellowship with the eternal God. He to whose voice the Jews were then listening had been with God as one brought up with Him.”—Signs,August 29, 1900 (Evangelism, 615).

“He was equal with God, infinite and omnipotent . . He is the eternal, self-existent Son.”—Lift Him Up, 17 (Evangelism, 615).

"The Lord Jesus Christ, the divine Son of God, existed from eternity, a distinct person, yet one with the Father." ST April 26, 1899

Here Christ shows them that, although they might reckon His life to be less than fifty years, yet His divine life could not be reckoned by human computation. The existence of Christ before His incarnation is not measured by figures."—The Signs of the Ti me s, May 3, 1899 .

From all eternity Christ was united with the Father, and when He took upon Himself human nature, He was still one with God."—The Signs of the Ti me s, Aug. 2, 1905 , p. 10.

“Silence fell upon the vast assembly. The name of God, given to Moses to express the idea of the eternal presence, had been claimed as His own by this Galilean Rabbi. He had announced Himself to be the self-existent One, He who had been promised to Israel, "whose goings forth have been from of old, from the days of eternity." Micah 5:2, margin. The Desire of Ages, pp. 469, 470.

The Jews had never before heard such words from human lips, and a convicting influence attended them; for it seemed that divinity flashed through humanity as Jesus said, 'I and my Father are one.' The words of Christ were full of deep meaning as he put forth the claim that he and the Father were of one substance, possessing the same attributes."—The Signs of the Times, Nov. 27, 1893 , p. 54.

Christ was God essentially, and in the highest sense. He was with God from all eternity, God over all, blessed forevermore."—The Review and Herald, April 5, 1906 , p. 8.

Who is Jehovah?

Psalm 83:18 “That men may know that thou, whose name alone is JEHOVAH, art the most high over all the earth.”

Jehovah, the eternal, self-existent, uncreated One, Himself the Source and Sustainer of all, is alone entitled to supreme reverence and worship.” {E. G. White, Patriarchs and Prophets, p. 305} 1890

"Jehovah is the name given to Christ. 'Behold, God is my salvation,' writes the prophet Isaiah; 'I will trust, and not be afraid; for the Lord JEHOVAH is my strength and my song; He also is become my salvation….Trust ye in the Lord forever; for in the Lord JEHOVAH is everlasting strength.'"—The Signs of the Times, May 3, 1899 , p. 2.

Isaiah 42:8 I am the LORD: that is my name: and my glory will I not give to another, neither my praise to graven images.

The aged leader urged the people to consider, in all its bearings, what he had set before them, and to decide if they really desired to live as did the degraded idolatrous nations around them. If it seemed evil to them to serve Jehovah, the source of power, the fountain of blessing, let them that day choose whom they would serve--"the gods which your fathers served," from whom Abraham was called out, "or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land ye dwell." PP 523

The heavenly gates are again to be lifted up, and with ten thousand times ten thousand and thousands of thousands of holy ones, our Saviour will come forth as King of kings and Lord of lords. Jehovah Immanuel 'shall be King over all the earth; in that day shall there be one Lord, and His name one.'"—Thoughts From the Mount of Blessing, p. 160.

This is the reward of all who follow Christ. Jehovah Emmanuel—He 'in whom are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge,' in whom dwells 'all the fullness of the Godhead bodily' (Col. 2:3, 9)—to be brought into sympathy with Him, to know Him, to possess Him, as the heart opens more and more to receive His attributes; to know His love and power, to possess the unsearchable riches of Christ, to comprehend more and more 'what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height; and to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fullness of God,' (Eph. 3:18, 19)—'this is the heritage of the servants of the Lord, and their righteousness is of Me, saith the Lord.'"—Ibid., p. 57.

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