From the book:
THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW ABOUT GOD #4
Perfectly balanced, perfectly integrated. In his book The Knowledge of the Holy, A. W. Tozer points out that there is no conflict between God's attributes within himself. He is perfectly integrated in his being; he is whole. This is what peace is. All of the expressions of God's character are perfectly balanced and perfectly manifested. What we call peace is the perfect, balanced expression of character that flows from a true and secure recognition of who God is.
Omnipresence. The first of the three compound words using the Latin prefix omni, meaning "all," is connected to the word "presence," meaning God is everywhere at once. God is present in all his creation but is in no way limited by it. Whereas immensity emphasizes the transcendence of God in that he transcends all space and is not subject to the limitations of space, omnipresence has special reference to his presence within the universe (1 Kings 8:27; Ps. 139:7-10; Isa. 66:1; Jer. 23:23-24; Acts 7:48-50; 17:24; Rom. 10:6-8).
The omnipresence of God means two things. The doctrine of the omnipresence of God is both comforting and subduing. It is a source of comfort, because God, the ever-present one, is always available to help us (Deut. 4:7; Pss. 46:1; 145:18; Matt. 28:20). But it is equally a source of warning and restraint. No matter how much we may try, the sinner cannot escape from God. Neither distance nor darkness hides us (Ps. 139:7-10). "And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are open and laid bare to the eyes of Him with whom we have to do" (Heb. 4:13 NASB).
Omniscience. God is infinite in knowledge. He knows himself and all other things perfectly, whether they be past, present, or future. He knows things immediately, simultaneously, exhaustively, and truly. Scripture declares that God's understanding is infinite (Ps. 147:5; Isa. 46:10), that nothing is hidden from him (Heb. 4:13), and that even the hairs on our head are numbered (Matt. 10:30).
[NOTHING IS HIDDEN FROM GOD UNLESS GOD WILLS HIMSELF NOT TO KNOW, WHICH AT TIMES HE DOES—— PROVED IN OTHER ARTICLES UNDER THIS SECTION - Keith Hunt]
God knows himself perfectly. No created being has complete and perfect knowledge of self other than God. The Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit know each other perfectly. The Trinity alone has intimate knowledge of each other. Jesus said, "No one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and those to whom the Son chooses to reveal him" (Matt. 11:27). Paul wrote, "No one knows the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God" (1 Cor. 2:11).
[THIS DOES NOT SAY “NO ONE KNOWS THE HOLY SPIRIT EXCEPT THE FATHER AND SON.” OF COURSE THE SPIRIT OF GOD KNOWS THE THOUGHTS OF GOD, AS THE SPIRIT OF GOD KNOWS THE THOUGHTS OF THE SON, AS THE SPIRIT COMES FROM BOTH OF THEM; THE FATHER AND SON THEN KNOW EACH OTHER FULLY AND INTIMATELY - Keith Hunt]
God determines and knows all things. This includes inanimate creation (Ps. 147:4), all the beasts (Ps. 8:7), humanity and all their works (Ps. 33:13-15; Prov. 5:21), men's thoughts and hearts (Ps. 139:1; Prov. 15:3), and men's burdens and wants (Exod. 3:7; Matt. 6:8, 32).
[ONCE MORE THERE ARE SOME THINGS GOD WILLS HIMSELF NOT TO KNOW, HE COULD, BUT HE WILLS HIMSELF NOT TO KNOW - Keith Hunt]
God orders all things into being. God knew that Keilah would betray David to Saul if David remained in that vicinity (1 Sam. 23:11-12). Jesus knew that Tyre and Sidon would have repented had they seen the miracles that were done in Bethsaida and Chorazin (Matt. 11:21). He also knew the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah ] would have been spared had they seen the works that were done in Capernaum (Matt. 11:23-24).
[JESUS AS THE GOD OF THE OLD TESTAMENT KNEW THE HEARTS OF PEOPLE IF THE WORKS OF GOD HAD BEEN DONE IN THEM - Keith Hunt]
God knows the future. From humanity's standpoint, God's knowledge of the future is foreknowledge, but from God's standpoint it is not, because he knows all things by one simultaneous intuition. He foreknew the future in general (Isa. 46:9-13; Daniel 2, 7; Matthew 24-25; Acts 15:18), the sinful course that Israel would take (Deut. 31:20-21), the rise of Cyrus (Isa. 44:26-45:7), the coming of Christ (Micah 5:2), and his crucifixion at the hands of wicked men (Acts 2:23; 3:18).
[AGAIN THERE ARE A FEW THINGS GOD WILLED HIMSELF NOT TO KNOW ABOUT THE FUTURE OR CERTAIN THINGS GOING ON, ON THE EARTH - Keith Hunt]
Omnipotence. God is all-powerful and able to do whatever he wills. Since his will is aligned with his nature, God can do everything that is in harmony with his perfections. Some things God cannot do because they are contrary to his nature as God. He cannot look with favor on iniquity (Hab. 1:13), deny himself (2 Tim. 2:13), lie (Titus 1:2; Heb. 6:18), or tempt or be tempted to sin (James 1:13).
God's possession of omnipotence does not demand the exercise of his power, and certainly not the exercise of all his power. In other words, God has power over his power. Omnipotence includes the power of self-limitation. God has limited himself to some extent by giving free will to his rational creatures.
The Bible clearly teaches the omnipotence of God. The Lord, who is called "Almighty" (Gen. 17:1; Rev. 4:8), is said to be able to do all things he purposes (Job 42:2), for with him all things are possible (Matt. 19:26) and nothing is too difficult (Jer. 32:17). He indeed reigns (Rev. 19:6).
Absolute versus ordinate power. A distinction can be made between God's absolute power, meaning that God may work directly, and his ordinate power, meaning he often uses second causes for divine intervention. Absolute power is used in creation, miracles, immediate revelation, inspiration, and regeneration.
To the Christian, the omnipotence of God is a source of great comfort and hope. The believer is urged to trust God in every walk of life with the knowledge of his creative, preserving, and providential power (Isa. 45:11-13; 46:4; Jer. 32:16-44; Acts 4:24-31). On the other hand, to the unbeliever, a God so mighty should be a source of fear (1 Peter 4:17; 2 Peter 3:10-12; Rev. 19:15). Even the demons shudder (James 2:19), knowing that God has power over them (Matt. 8:29). Someday even the strongest and greatest will seek to hide from God (Rev. 6:15-17), and every knee will bow at the name of Jesus (Phil. 2:10).
God is immutable and unchanging. All change is either for better or worse, but God cannot change to the better, because he is absolutely perfect; neither can he change for the worse, for the same reason. He can never be wiser, more holy, more just, more merciful, more truthful, or less so. Neither do his plans and purposes change. Scripture declares that there is no variation with God (James 1:17). He does not change with regard to his character (Ps. 102:26-27; Mai. 3:6; Heb. 1:12), his power (Rom. 4:20-21), his plans or purposes (Ps. 33:11; Isa. 46:10), his promises (1 Kings 8:56; 2 Cor. 1:20), his love and mercy (Ps. 103:17), or his justice (Gen. 18:25; Isa. 28:17).
[“PLANS AND PURPOSES” — CAN BE GENERAL STATEMENTS - HAVE TO BE VERY CAREFUL HOW YOU UNDERSTAND THOSE WORDS, IN THE CONTEXT YOU USE THEM. GOD WAS GOING TO DESTROY COMPLETELY THE PEOPLE OF ISRAEL, AND START ALL OVER AGAIN WITH THE SONS OF MOSES; MOSES DEBATED GOD ON THIS PLAN, AND GOD WAS WILLING TO LISTEN TO MOSES, AND DID NOT ENTER ON HIS NEW PLAN—— EXODUS 32:10-14. SAME KINDA THING GOD DID WITH ABRAHAM—— A DEBATE ON THE DESTRUCTION OF SODOM — GENESIS 18. ALL SHOWS GOD CAN BE INTREATED BY MANKIND; HE GAVE US A MIND TO THINK WITH, EVEN AT TIMES “DEBATE” WITH GOD - Keith Hunt]
Immutability is not to be confused with immobility. God is active and enters into relationships with changing people. In these relationships it is necessary for an unchangeable God to alter his dealings with changing humanity in order to remain constant in his character and purposes. For example, God deals differently with people before salvation than after (Prov. 11:20; 12:12; 1 Peter 3:12), and when his children change from evil to good, or from good to evil (Gen. 6:6; Exod. 32:14; Jer. 18:7-11; Joel 2:13; Jonah 3:10). God's immutability consists in always doing right.
God's Moral Attributes
The holiness of God. God is absolutely separate from and exalted above all his creation, and he is equally separate from all evil and sin. God is perfect in all that he is. God's will is always the expression of his nature, which is holy.
Holiness in the Old Testament. Holiness is the attribute by which God wanted to be known in the Old Testament times. It is emphasized by the boundaries set on Mount Sinai when God came down upon it (Exod. 19:12-25)—the division of the tabernacle and temple into the holy and most holy places (Exod. 26:33; 1 Kings 6:16, 19), the prescribed offerings (Leviticus 1-7), the special priesthood to mediate between God and the people, the many laws about impurity, the feasts of Israel, and the special position of Israel in Palestine. The Lord is called "the Holy One" some thirty times in Isaiah alone.
Holiness in the New Testament. In New Testament times, holiness is ascribed to God with less frequency than in the Old, but is still prevalent (John 17:11; Heb. 12:10; 1 Peter 1:15.). The angels around the throne of God sing "Holy, holy, holy" (Isa. 6:3;, Rev. 4:8). The holiness of God, rather than the love, the power, or the will of God, should be given first place. Holiness is the regulative principle of the other three, for his throne is established on the basis of his holiness.
Righteousness and justice. Righteousness and justice are the aspects of God's holiness that are seen in his dealings with his creation. Abraham pondered, "Will not the Judge of all the earth do right?" (Gen. 18:25). The psalmist declares, "Righteousness and justice are the foundation of your throne" (Ps. 89:14; 97:2).
The goodness of God. In the larger sense of the term, the goodness of God includes many qualities such as God's holiness, righteousness, and truth. But in the narrower sense, God's goodness focuses on his love, benevolence, mercy, and grace.
The love of God is not a mere emotional impulse but a rational and voluntary affection, having its ground in truth and holiness. It exercises free choice. This does not deny feeling, for true love involves feeling. The fact that God grieves over the sins of his people implies that he loves his people with much feeling (Isa. 63:9; Eph. 4:30).
"God is love," the Scriptures declare (1 John 4:8, 16; 2 Cor. 13:11). It is his very nature to love. He initiates love (1 John 4:10). The Father loves the Son (Matt. 3:17), and the Son loves the Father (John 14:31). God loves the world (John 3:16; Eph. 2:4), his ancient people Israel (Deut. 7:6-8, 13; Jer. 31:3), and his true children (John 14:23). He loves righteousness (Ps. 11:7) and justice (Isa. 61:8). The assurance of God's love is a source of comfort to the believer (Rom. 8:35-39).
The compassion of God. The Lamb of God turned his cheek to the smiters and pled clemency for his murderers—and we read of Jehovah: "The Lord is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, abounding in love" (Ps. 103:8).
The benevolence of God. Because of his goodness, God deals bountifully, tenderly, and kindly with all his creatures. "The Lord is good to all and His mercies are over all His works. . . . The eyes of all look to You, and You give them their food in due time. You open Your hand and satisfy the desire of every living thing" (Ps. 145:9, 15-16 NASB). The benevolence of God is made known in his concern for the welfare of humanity and is suited to our needs and capacities (Job 38:41; Ps. 104:21). His benevolence is not restricted to believers, for "He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous" (Matt. 5:45).
The mercy of God. God's mercy is his goodness shown to those who are in misery or distress. Compassion, pity, and lovingkindness are other terms in Scripture that communicate much the same thing. God is "rich in mercy" (Eph. 2:4) and "is full of compassion and mercy" (James 5:11). The term is often used in salutations and benedictions (Gal. 6:16; 1 Tim. 1:2; 2 Tim. 1:2; 2 John 3; Jude 2). Most important, God judges in mercy.
The grace of God. The grace of God is shown toward those who are guilty. Scripture speaks of "his glorious grace" (Eph. 1:6), "the incomparable riches of his grace" (Eph. 2:7), "abundant grace" (1 Peter 4:10), and "true grace" (1 Peter 5:12). The exercise of grace, like that of mercy, is optional with God.
Scriptures show the grace of God revealed to sinners through his long-suffering delay of the punishment of sin (Exod. 34:6; Rom. 2:4; 3:25; 1 Peter 3:20) and his showering of humanity with blessings instead of immediate judgment (Heb. 6:7). He made provision for our salvation (1 John 2:2), gave us the Word of God (Hosea 8:12), and made possible the convicting work of the Spirit (John 16:8-11) and common grace (Titus 2:ll). God's special grace is also often mentioned in salutations and benedictions (1 Cor. 1:3;] 16:23; Eph. 1:2; Phil. 1:2; Rev. 1:4; 22:21).
God is truth. The truth of God is not only the foundation of all religion but of all knowledge. God is the source of all truth. The conviction that the senses do not deceive, that consciousness is trustworthy, that things are what they appear to be, and that existence is not merely a dream rests ultimately upon the truth of God. Many like Pilate ask, "What is truth?" (John 18:38). Ultimate truth or reality is God.
Jesus affirmed God as "the only true God" (John 17:3). John wrote, "We are in him who is true" (1 John 5:20). His revelations of himself in nature, consciousness, and Scripture are true and trustworthy (Ps. 31:5; Heb. 6:17-18).
JESUS WAS HERE GIVING THE FATHER THE GREATER HONOR—- THERE IS INDEED ONLY ONE THAT IS THE HIGHEST - THE ONE SUPREME BEING IN AUTHORITY, THE ONE THAT IS THE ONLY SUPREME GOD BEING IN AUTHORITY - THE ONE THAT IS ONLY ON THE THRONE OF HEAVEN - JESUS THE CHRIST AT HIS RIGHT HAND; SO SAYS JESUS; SO SAYS ALL THE VISIONS OF THE THRONE OF HEAVEN GIVEN IN THE BIBLE.