Before I formed you in your mother’s womb, I knew you.

…I will prove… that men have existed before they were born… Jacob, who while yet hidden in the secret chamber of his mother’s bellywomb supplanted his brother… Jeremiah likewise existed before his birth to whom the message comes: ‘Before I formed you in your mother’s womb, I knew you; and before you came forth from the belly, I sanctified you, and appointed you for a prophet among the nations’ (Jer. 1:5). What testimony can we have stronger than the case of this great prophet, who was sanctified before he was born, and known before he was shaped? What, again, shall I say of John, of whom his holy mother testifies that, while he yet lay in her womb, he perceived in spirit the presence of his Lord, and leaped for joy, as we remember it to be written, his mother saying: ‘For lo, as soon as the voice of the salutation entered my ears, the babe leaped in my womb for joy’ (Lk. 1:44).

St. Ambrose