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Attributes of God: Omniscience | Theology Matters

  • June 2004 Issue
Practical Theology

Does God know what kind of day you had yesterday? Does He know what kind of day you are having today? More importantly, does He know what kind of day you will have tomorrow? The answer to these questions relates to the divine attribute of omniscience.

To say that God is omniscient implies that He knows all that can be known: past, present, and future. In Isaiah 46:10 He declares, “I make known the end from the beginning, from ancient times, what is still to come. I say: My purpose will stand, and I will do all that I please.”

God knows our thoughts before we think them, our words before we speak them, and our actions before we implement them (Ps. 139:1–4). He discerns the secret motives of our hearts (Ps. 139:23; Prov. 16:33).

The biblical truth that God is omniscient would have been especially comforting during Isaiah’s day, as the northern kingdom of Israel was carried into captivity by the Assyrians, and the people of Judah were warned that they would suffer a similar fate at the hands of the Babylonians. Divine omniscience meant that God’s purpose for them, based upon His comprehensive knowledge of their future, would be fulfilled.

Why Theology Matters

The fact that God knows all is amazing enough. But there is an even more amazing truth. The same God whose knowledge is so comprehensive that it encompasses past, present, and future, also knows you by name. Every minute detail of your life is clear to Him, even those things that are hidden from you. He hears when you pray, discerns the true motives behind the words, and knows just how to answer.

FOR FURTHER READING

To learn more about God’s omniscience and other divine attributes, read Our Awesome God by John MacArthur (Good News).

 

BY Dr. John Koessler

Dr. John Koessler, who retired as professor emeritus from Moody Bible Institute, formerly served in the division of applied theology and church ministry. John and his wife Jane enjoy living in a lakeside town in Michigan. A prolific writer, John’s books include Dangerous Virtues: How to Follow Jesus When Evil Masquerades as Good (Moody Publishers), The Radical Pursuit of Rest (InterVarsity), The Surprising Grace of Disappointment (Moody), and True Discipleship (Moody). John is a contributing editor and columnist for Today in the Word.

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