The Godhead Together
If you, like I, grew up in a denominational church, you were probably taught the words omniscient, omnipresent, and omnipotent in a catechism class. What do they mean? Simply this: God is all-knowing, present everywhere at the same time, and all-powerful.
We already said, in our post on the eternalness of the Godhead, that God is all-knowing about everything that will ever happen in our lives because He is outside of and above time. He looks at all the past, present, and future simultaneously. Job 24:1 tells us that “times are not hidden from the Almighty.”
His omniscience (all-knowingness) involves much more than time, however. Psalm 147:5 says that “His understanding is infinite.” He understands how everything works without ever having had to study to acquire that information. All knowledge is in His possession. In fact, He is the One Who thought of and instituted all the scientific and mathematical laws by which the universe is governed. Gravity and the Laws of Thermodynamics? They are what they are because He chose to make them work that way. He could have chosen to do something entirely different instead. That is mind-boggling to me! When we think of the intricacies of each cell and how the cells harmoniously interact with each other within each living creature, it is beyond our comprehension.
Along with knowing everything, God has complete wisdom. Wisdom is the ability to know what to do with knowledge. It is part of God’s nature. The limited wisdom that human beings naturally possess is there because we have been created in the image of God (Genesis 1:26), meaning that we carry a reflection of His nature within us.
God is able to be everywhere at the same time. Psalm 139 gives us a picture of God’s omnipresent nature. We tend to think, “How can He do that?” – because, again, we have no frame of reference in our everyday world for such a concept. Just as in thinking of Him as an eternal Being without a beginning, or thinking of Him as a Trinity of three persons, it is a mystery we must accept by faith.
God is all-powerful. Nothing is beyond His ability to do, undo, or change, except where it would violate His own nature of goodness. The many miracles recorded in both the Old and New Testaments imply and testify to the all-powerfulness of God. The prophet Jeremiah exclaimed, “Ah, Lord GOD! Behold, you have made the heaven and the earth by your great power and stretched-out arm, and there is nothing too hard for you” (Jeremiah 32:17). Jesus said, “With men it is impossible, but not with God: for with God all things are possible” (Mark 10:27).
Unbelief is the product of not having an accurate understanding of God’s nature. If we would only embrace fully the truth of God’s omnipotence coupled with His goodness, there would be no platform for unbelief within us. The Israelites of Moses’ day struggled with doubting God’s ability to provide for them and protect them supernaturally, yet He always did. We tend to struggle with this same problem today – but we also commonly complicate the matter by saying we believe He can, but we are not sure He will do good things for us. When we understand God’s nature – that He is totally capable and also totally good – we will believe Him for the help we so desperately need from Him – and we will not be disappointed.
It is interesting to me that many times believers speak and act as though Satan is omniscient, omnipresent, and omnipotent, and they get into a fear and awe of him that should only belong to God. In fact, it almost seems with some of us as though we think the devil has more power over our lives than the Lord does! We must combat such mindsets whenever we find them cropping up in our thinking.
Good and evil are not equal opposing forces. The concept that they are is an Eastern religion idea, but it has become ingrained in Western thinking through vehicles such as the very popular Star Wars movies. The truth is, Satan is a created being, just as we are. His knowledge is limited, his power is limited, and he is confined to one spot at a time, just as we are. There may be the appearance of him being everywhere, because he has a network of fallen spiritual beings who help him with his evil purposes. They also provide information to him, but they do not know everything. We must be vigilant to not magnify Satan in our minds to God’s level or to anywhere near it.
Excerpted from Before Whom We Stand: The Everyman’s Guide to the Nature of God — available in print from Full Gospel Family Publications and Amazon and in e-book form from many fine ebook sellers.