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essay: Essence of God

November 8, 2014

    1. God’s Essence is made up of:

    JUSTICE, LOVE, +RIGHTEOUSNESS, SOVEREIGNTY, OMNIPOTENCE, OMNISCIENCE, IMMUTABILITY, OMNIPRESENCE, VERACITY, ETERNAL LIFE,

  1. SOVEREIGNTY
    1. This term defines the fact and nature of God’s volition.
    2. Since God possesses volition, He makes decisions, plans, policies, etc. (Gen.1:3, 26).
    3. Due to His nature, He has no rivals as He exercises supreme power and rule over everyone and everything. There is nothing outside His jurisdiction (Deut.4:39; Ps.93:1,2; Isa.44:6-8; 45:5-8,18).
    4. As the absolute authority in the universe, He alone possesses authority as a part of His essence, which He may or may not exercise, as He sees fit (Job.34:13-15).
    5. All other authorities, human and angelic, are delegated by God (Dan.4:32, 35; Rom.13:1-7).
    6. God’s Sovereignty allows human and angelic volition to adjust or not adjust to His decisions.
    7. It is God’s sovereign will for all men to make the salvation adjustment and the maturity adjustment (1Tim.2:3, 4).
    8. Three applications of divine Sovereignty include:
      1. The directive will of God: what God desires.
      2. The permissive will of God: what God allows or tolerates.
      3. The overruling will of God: God’s intervention in judgment when His directive will has been spurned.

ETERNAL LIFE

    1. God has no beginning and no end to His existence (Ps.90:2; Isa.43:13; Lam.5:19; Rev.1:8).
    2. He is absolute existence (Ex.3:14).
    3. God is the creator of time, and organizes the ages of time for His purpose (Heb.1:2; 11:3).
    4. He preexists all creation and will continue to exist after the dissolution of this creation (Gen.1:1; 2Pet.3:10-13).
    5. God devised a plan whereby He could impart His life to mankind (Jn.3:16; 4:14).

OMNIPOTENCE

      1. This word is derived from the Latin term meaning “all powerful”.
      2. God is all-powerful; able to do all things He desires to do.
      3. Therefore, His power and authority are often closely linked (Ps.93:1,2; Isa.40:26-31; Jer.27:5).
      4. His power and authority are limitless (1Chron.29:11,12).
      5. Although it is true that God can do all the things He wants to do, He does not will to do all the things He can do.
      6. God limits the exercise of His power to remain consistent with His essence and plan.
      7. God cannot do some things due to His nature.
        1. He cannot deny Himself (2Tim.2:13).
        2. He cannot lie (Heb.6:18).
        3. He cannot tempt anyone to sin (Jam.1:13).
        4. He cannot be tempted with evil (Jam.1:13).

    OMNIPRESENCE

      1. This word is derived from the Latin term meaning “all present”.
      2. God is personally present everywhere, both within and outside the material creation (Ps.139:7-12).
      3. This is not pantheism, which says that God is the creation and denies His person.
      4. God’s essence penetrates and fills the universe, without diffusion, division, multiplication, etc. (Jer.23:23, 24).
      5. God is both immanent and transcendent (Act.17:24-28; Job.1:6,7; 2:1,2).
      6. He is both in Heaven and on the earth simultaneously (Isa.66:1).
      7. This is a source of great comfort to the adjusted, and very disconcerting to the maladjusted (Mt.28:20).

    OMNISCIENCE

      1. This term is derived from the Latin meaning “all knowing”.
      2. While this attribute is closely associated with Omnipresence, God’s knowledge is not restricted to “being there”.
      3. God’s knowledge eternally preexisted all things (1Pet.1:20).
      4. Omniscience knows all that was, is, or can ever be. God knows that which is actual, or probable, or possible (Mt.11:21-24).
      5. Every detail of history is before God at all times. He knows the end as well as the beginning (Isa.46:10).
      6. He does not learn, forget, remember, or acquire knowledge; He knows all things perfectly.
      7. This includes all men, what they think, say, or do, even before they do it (Ps.33:13-15, 139:1-6).
      8. While He possesses Omniscience, His knowledge is not causative. What He foreknows and what He predestines are not the same (Rom.8:29,30).

    The moral attributes:

    RIGHTEOUSNESS

    1. God’s Righteousness (+R) is absolute (1Sam.2:2; Isa.6:3; Rev.3:7; 4:8; 6:10).
    2. He is absolutely free from sin in every way (1Jn.1:5; 3:5).
    3. He is perfect in person and character (Deut.32:4; Ps.11:7; 111:3).
    4. He is righteous in His attitudes and actions (2Sam.22:31; Rev.19:2,11).
    5. God has no interest in activity or people who are less than righteous (Ps.5:4-6).
    6. That which is opposed to His Righteousness is called wickedness, evil, or iniquity.
    7. This attribute occupies the foremost position of all of God’s attributes, and is the watchdog of God’s essence.
    8. All other attributes must check their function against +R.
    9. Applications to the unbeliever.
      1. No one can attain to the standard of absolute Righteousness (Rom.3:23).
      2. Man’s works are not sufficient for salvation (Isa.64:6).
      3. The only way to obtain absolute Righteousness and be accepted before God is to believe in Christ (2Cor.5:21).
    1. Applications to the believer.

1. Once you acquire +R you cannot lose it (1Cor.1:2). 2. While we are positionally righteous in Christ, we are exhorted to live in a manner consistent with the character of God (Eph.4:22-24).

3. Absolute, experiential Righteousness is not possible in P2 (1Jn.1:8,10).

K. This attribute is often referred to by the term “holiness”.

JUSTICE

      1. This attribute is that aspect of God’s character that demands that He deal with all creatures based on +R.
      2. Justice is not arbitrary, but is based strictly on the perfect standard of Righteousness that God possesses.
      3. God’s Justice cannot be unfair or discriminating (Gen.18:25; 2Chron.19:7; Ps.19:9; 89:14).
      4. Due to perfect Justice, God is no respecter of persons and does not show partiality (Deut.10:17; Job.34:19; Eph.6:9).
      5. Justice demands that all sins and all sinful conditions be judged at some point in the Angelic Conflict (A/C).
      6. All sins were judged in the person of Christ, and Justice was satisfied.
      7. This is known as propitiation, or the satisfaction of Justice (Rom.3:25; 1Jn.2:2; 4:10).
      8. Justice acts in two ways.
        1. Remuneration (Deut.7:9,12,13; Mt.25:21; 1Pet.1:7-9).
        2. Retribution (Gen.2:17; Ex.34:7; Ezek.18:4; 2Thess.1:6-8).

    LOVE

      1. This attribute is equally present among all three members of the Godhead (1Jn.4:8).
      2. This attribute is eternal and unchanging (Micah.7:18-20).
      3. Even though man has not always loved God, God has always loved mankind (Jn.3:16; 1Jn.4:10).
      4. This attribute does not spring from emotions, but only acts in accord with Righteousness.
      5. God’s Love is not emotional, sloppy, or maudlin, but is the expression of His care and concern for the best interests of any with whom He deals.
      6. God’s Love is not only directed toward those He finds attractive, desirable, or amenable to His person, but is equally directed toward His enemies (Rom.5:8,10).
      7. God’s Love motivated Him to offer His own Son in the place of His enemies (Jn.3:16; 2Cor.5:21).
      8. Once one is a son of God, he cannot be separated from the Love of God (Rom.8:35-39).
      9. Both overt blessing and divine discipline (DD) are expressions of the Love of God (Mt.6:4,6; Heb.12:5-13).
      10. Variations in blessing among believers are not due to a lack of Love on God’s part, but to negative volition and disobedience.

    IMMUTABILITY

      1. This attribute deals with the fact that God cannot change in His essence (Ps.102:26, 27; Mal.3:6).
      2. God cannot become better or worse than what He already is.
      3. You could not improve upon perfection.
      4. This attribute is absolute and is the glue that binds all of the other attributes together.
      5. God’s faithfulness stems from His Immutability (Num.23:19, 20; Lam.3:22,23; Mal.3:6).
      6. God is faithful to:
        1. Save and keep saved (Jn.3:16; 2Tim.2:13).
        2. Forgive (1Jn.1:9).
        3. Protect us in temptation (1Cor.10:13).
        4. Complete His plan for the believer (1Cor.1:8,9; 1Thess.5:23,24).
      7. God’s word is immutable and faithful (Ps.119:86, 89; Isa.40:8).

    VERACITY

    1. This attribute deals with the fact that God is the only source of truth (Ps.31:5; 117:2).
    2. This attribute means that it is impossible for God to lie or ever do anything in contradiction to the truth (Ti.1:2; Heb.6:18).
    3. He does notacquire truth; Heis truth, and manifests this in His:
      1. ways (Ps.25:10; 86:15; Rev.15:3).
      2. works (Ps.111:7,8; Dan.4:37).
    4. Therefore, He expects His creation to deal in truth, just as He does (Ps.51:6; Jer.5:1-3).
    5. Since His word proceeds from His essence, it is absolutely trustworthy and reliable (2Sam.7:28; Ps.119:151).
    6. The word of truth is the basis for our salvation.
      1. Ph1 salvation (Col.1:5; Jam.1:18).
      2. Ph2 salvation (sanctification, Jn.17:17; 2Thess.2:13)
      3. Ph3 salvation (SG3, Col.1:5; 2Thess.2:14).
  1. The nature of God.
    1. The word of God (WOG) makes God’s attributes clear.
    2. He possesses certain characteristics that further help us define and understand Him.
    3. While these characteristics are not a part of His essence, they are nonetheless true.
    4. These characteristics include:
      1. Personality.
        1. God is a person; He possesses and manifests all that one would expect of a person.
        2. He has self consciousness (Isa.45:5,6).
        3. He has self determination (Job.23:13; Rom.9:11; Eph.1:11; 3:11).
        4. He executes His decisions (Dan.4:24, 33).
        5. He is alive (Josh.3:10; Mt.16:16).
        6. He uses the normal pronouns when referring to Himself, including “I”, “Me”, “Mine”, etc.
        7. He is discriminating and discerning (Gen.1:4,7).
        8. He chooses those with whom He will associate and those with whom He fellowships (Jn.14:21-23).
      2. Spirituality.
        1. God is immaterial, yet real (Jn.4:24).
        2. He is invisible in essence (Rom.1:20; 1Tim.1:17).
        3. Man is not capable of seeing God and living (Ex.33:20).
        4. No one has ever seen the divine essence (Jn.1:18).
        5. Only in Ph3 will the believer be able to see God (Rev.22:4).
        6. This is why the Jews, and everyone else for that matter, were told not to make images (Deut.4:15-19).
      3. Infinity.
        1. God is without boundary or limitation of any kind.
        2. God’s infinity in relationship to space is called immensity.
        3. God is not confined by space, but all finite space depends on Him.
        4. This is also known as transcendence.
        5. God’s infinity in regard to time is called eternity.
        6. He is free from the succession of time, and functions outside of time.
        7. God created both space and time for His purposes (Jn.1:3; Col.1:16).
        8. Since God has no beginning or end, He is called the eternal God (Gen.21:33).