Revisionist History


Time present and time past
Are both perhaps present in time future
And time future contained in time past.
—T. S. Eliot

“With God all things are possible.”
—Matthew 19:26

I have come to the conclusion that God can and often does literally alter the past in order to answer prayer.

What I mean is that a prayer offered today can directly influence events which have already taken place. Thus, we often experience God’s activity as the culmination of a sequence of events, many (if not most) of which were initiated before we prayed in the first place—or even before we were born. I’m convinced that prayer can not only change the future, it can also alter the past. Tomorrow’s prayer is answered yesterday.

We shouldn’t really be surprised at this. Modern particle physics theory allows the arrow of time to operate both forward and backward. Affecting a particle’s current state may instantaneously affect all its previous states too. Weird, but allowed within rigorous mathematical boundaries.

Of course, it’s impossible for us to see the past being changed. For us, the past is always and necessarily a done deal. If God does alter the past in answer to our prayers, that past will always appear to us as the one necessary history. Indeed, for us it will be the only past we have ever had. Reality is always reality, even if God changes it.

Even weirder, if prayers uttered today affect the past, this means that current events—our now—are affected by prayers still yet to be uttered. The prayers of our future selves or others for the needs of their times will influence (are influencing/have influenced) our present situation. We are this very moment living the answers to the prayers of future saints. Whoa.

The logistics of the whole thing may be brain-bending, but the moral of the story is simple: IT IS NEVER TOO LATE TO PRAY! So get on your knees, kids. Your past may depend on it.

Who works out everything in conformity with the purpose of his will.
—Ephesians 1:11

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One Response

  1. The concept of baptism for the dead makes more sense now.

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