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where, in the Trinitarian interpretation, Christ is identified with a pre-existent divine hypostasis called the Logos or Word. Orthodox Christian faith believes that Jesus of Nazareth was personally identical with the eternally pre-existent Son of God or Logos.

There are other nontrinitarian views that question the aspect of personal pre-existence or the aspect of divinity or both. Here Christians hold the pre-existence of a divine person—something distinct from other notions such as the pre-existence of the Jewish Torah or Plato's scheme of pre-existing ideas that provided the pattern for the demiurge in fashioning the world.

In the case of the human nature assumed by the Logos, "there was [a time] when this nature was not"—to apply controversial language to the humanity and not (as Arius did) to the person of the Son of God.

Other non-Trinitarian Christians with belief in pre-existence (see Section 2 below) may have different or similar interpretations of such verses.

For example, Tertullian in Against Marcion Ch.21 sees a pre-existent appearance of Christ in the fiery furnace of one who is "like the son of man (for he was not yet really son of man)." The identification of specific appearances of Christ is increasingly common in evangelical literature from the 1990s onwards. Terry Whalin states that the fourth person in the fiery furnace is Christ, and that "These appearances of Christ in the Old Testament are known as Theophanies or 'appearances of God' ".

As Thomas Aquinas put it, "the humane nature" of Christ was created and began in time, where "the subsistent subject" is both uncreated and eternal.

Pre-existence means rather that Christ personally belongs to an order of being other than the created, temporal one.

After all, Plato could define time as "the eternal image of eternity, moving according to number" (Timaeus, 37d).

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