Column: What Is God Like? The “Omni” Attributes

Published 11:29 am Monday, March 25, 2024

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By Hank Walker | Pastor at Peach City Fellowship

When we began our journey through the attributes of God, I indicated that we would circle back to God’s “Omni” attributes. According to these attributes, we can draw important inferences about how God interacts with His creation. This week, we will seek to define our terms and set a foundation for the next three articles—in which we will take a deeper dive into each of these towering perfections of God.

Taken together, “omnipotence,” “omniscience,” and “omnipresence” help us understand that God is “all-powerful,” “all-knowing,” and “all-present everywhere at all times.” Of course, by now, you have gathered that “omni” simply means “all.”

A common misunderstanding is that omnipotence means “God can do ANYTHING.” But, there are lots of things God cannot do. For instance, God cannot lie, cannot be immoral, cannot be tempted with evil, cannot deny Himself, and cannot do anything contradictory to His Word. Additionally, He cannot act foolishly or inconsistently with His character. For instance, when skeptics ask “gotcha” questions like, “Can God make a rock so big that He cannot pick it up?” it is because they have a fundamental misunderstanding of what wise omnipotence is.

Put simply, OMNIPOTENCE means that God has both the POWER and the AUTHORITY to do ALL that He has determined to do. “Our God is in the heavens, He does ALL that He pleases” (Ps. 115:3).

OMNISCIENCE speaks to the comprehensive and exhaustive knowledge of God. He knows EVERYTHING! He knows Himself perfectly. He knows His creation perfectly. From subatomic nanoparticles to the furthest reaches of space to the thoughts and intentions of man’s heart, nothing is outside the purview of His knowledge.

Finally, OMNIPRESENCE means that God is fully present in every place, every dimension (material and immaterial), and every moment of time. When we think of “presence,” however, we tend to think of the finite limitations of a material body. God is spirit—immaterial—so, no such limitations apply to Him. He is not only present in the sense of “being there,” He is consciously present, sustaining all that IS—in heaven, on earth, and even in hell below.

Next time, we will consider the breadth of God’s omnipotence—in the meantime, consider taking the time to revel in David’s exaltation of these divine attributes in Psalm 139.

Grace & peace, y’all!

Soli Deo Gloria