Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.
When I get to know Jesus, I come into contact with his eternity. Of myself, I do not have much feeling for this, for I live in time. This is something I just cannot escape. I simply am unable to reach beyond time. But if I want to get a taste of eternity, i.e. of the life that is not subject to time, then this can happen through admiring Jesus as the eternal one.
Certainly, as a man he temporarily lived on earth. He was born, he lived, he gave his life on the cross and after his resurrection, he returned to heaven. Yet, in this human Jesus, eternity touched this temporal world. And if we look very intently, we will see that eternity is a life that is completely focused on God, a life that has value for eternity and a life that is drenched with the Spirit.
Sometimes this is said in this way: eternity is not a quantitative concept, but a qualitative one. Quantitative has to do with a quantity, in this case a certain amount of time, infinitely much time, time that never comes to an end. Of course, I believe this, but as a human being I cannot imagine what it will be like to live forever so that my life never ends.
Qualitative is about a unique kind of life. This refers not so much to an endlessly long life, but more to a very special kind of life, a beautiful, very profound, very divine kind of life that has value for eternity. Jesus himself, speaking about himself, articulates this in this way:
. . . since you have given him authority over all flesh, to give eternal life to all whom you have given him. And this is eternal life, that they know you the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent.
Jesus is able to say this because he possesses eternal life and is the eternal one:
I am the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end.
This is how I can learn to praise and honor Christ for his infinite beauty and his eternal goodness!
May his name endure forever,
his fame continue as long as the sun!
May people be blessed in him,
all nations call him blessed!
Jesus, you are eternal! You are the beginning and the end, the alpha and the omega, the first and the last. Only the life that you give has value for eternity. Teach me to get to know you more and more so that your eternal life increasingly can flow more powerfully in my life.