Foreknown before the foundation of the
(John 1:30; John 8:58)
Letter to the Editor:
GOD'S MESSAGE, November 2003, p.2
I HAVE ALWAYS believed, in fact so did my parents
and grandparents, that Christ is God. One of the proofs of His deity
is that He already existed even before the foundation of the world.
I understand that you do not believe in the pre-existence of Christ.
But, if Christ did not already exist before, then why did John the
Baptist say in John 1:30, "He was before me''? Moreover, in John
8:58 Christ Himself said "... before Abraham was I AM" (NKJV). How
do you explain these two verses?
Elizabeth, New Jersey, U.S.A.
The verses you quoted have been misinterpreted to
mean that Christ is God because
according to those who adhere to the belief in Christ's deity, the
verses teach that He existed corporeally even before creation.
"This is He of whom I
said, 'After me comes a Man who is preferred before me, for He was
before me.' ((John 1:30, NKJV)
Jesus said to them, "Most assuredly, I
say to you, before Abraham was, I AM."
(John 8:58 , NKJV)
However, John 1:30 and John 8:58, do not in any
way teach about or prove the alleged deity and "pre-existence" of
Although in John 1:30, John the Baptist said that
Christ was before him, he said so not because Christ had already
pre-existed corporeally, but because Christ was already
foreknown or planned by God even before the foundation of the world.
"Foreknown indeed before the foundation of the
world, but manifested in the last times for you" (1 Pt. 1:2,
Even before the foundation of the world, Christ
was already in the mind of God, Christ was the very first in God's
plan of creation, though He was not the first to be created by God.
This is the same reason that Christ stated in John 8:58, "... before
Abraham was, I AM." He was already in the mind of God, or He
was already planned by God even before Abraham. The plan of
God concerning the sending forth of our Lord Jesus Christ was
fulfilled when He was born of a woman named Mary (Gal. 4:4; Mt.
But when the fullness of the time had come,
God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the law,
Now the birth of Jesus Christ was as follows:
After His mother Mary was betrothed to Joseph, before they came
together, she was found with child of the Holy Spirit. 19 Then
Joseph her husband, being a just [man,] and not wanting to make her
a public example, was minded to put her away secretly. 20 But while
he thought about these things, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared
to him in a dream, saying, "Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid
to take to you Mary your wife, for that which is conceived in her is
of the Holy Spirit. (Matthew 1:18-20, NKJV)
In like manner, the prophet Jeremiah was chosen
by God even before he was born (Jer. 1:5). In fact, "even before the
world was made, God had already chosen us to be His through
our union with Christ (Eph. 1:4). This however
does not mean that we or prophet Jeremiah had already existed
corporeally even before birth.
"Before I formed you in the
womb I knew you; Before you were born I sanctified you; I ordained
you a prophet to the nations." (Jeremiah 1:5, NKJV)
Just as He chose us in Him before the
foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame
before Him in love, (Ephesians 1:4, NKJV)
Moreover, it is important to bear in mind that
John the Baptist was conceived and born before our lord Jesus
Christ. (Luke 1:31-36), and Christ is the "seed" or descendant
Abraham (Gal. 3:16). So Christ could not have existed corporeally
before Abraham and John the Baptist.
"And behold, you will conceive in your womb
and bring forth a Son, and shall call His name JESUS. 32 "He will be
great, and will be called the Son of the Highest; and the Lord God
will give Him the throne of His father David. 33 "And He will reign
over the house of Jacob forever, and of His kingdom there will be no
end." 34 Then Mary said to the angel, "How can this be, since I do
not know a man?" 35 And the angel answered and said to her, "[The]
Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Highest will
overshadow you; therefore, also, that Holy One who is to be born
will be called the Son of God. :36 "Now indeed, Elizabeth your
relative has also conceived a son in her old age; and this is now
the sixth month for her who was called barren. ((Luke 1:31, NKJV)
Abraham and his Seed were the promises made. He does not say, "And
to seeds," as of many, but as of one, "And to your Seed," who is
Christ. (Galatians 3:16,