Reflections on Omniscience

What does God know?  He knows everything of course.

What does God control? He controls everything of course.

Where can God be found? He is everywhere, at all times.

If God knows everything, controls everything, and is found everywhere, why does the word “predestination” stir a chill in the minds of many? It seems the concept is acceptable when it comes to the overall character of God and His work with mankind. However, when we bring it down to a personal level – especially regarding salvation – it becomes a stumbling block.

For many non-reformers, we like he idea of “God’s will” better. It sounds softer than, “God predetermined this or that to happen and it is out of your control.”

The writer of Proverbs said, “The eyes of the LORD are every place, keeping watch on the evil and the good…Sheol and Abaddon lie open before the LORD; how much more the hearts of the children of men?”  (15:3,11)

In the Reformation Study Bible, there is an extensive comment on divine omniscience. In one paragraph we find this, “God’s knowledge is linked with His sovereignty: He knows each thing because He created it, sustains it, and now makes it function every moment according to his plan (Eph 1:11). The idea that God could know, and foreknow, everything without controlling everything is not only unscriptural but illogical.”  (pg. 896)

Is that a lesson in puppetry or is it a matter of how man’s free will fits that understanding of God? As a human being, created in the image of God, am I devoid of any “control” over my thoughts or actions?

This whole idea confounds me. Oh, it would be nice to have pre-scripted answers to all the questions, but that would be too easy.

Is it unwise to simply leave it as a mystery? To let God be God and not attempt to dissect His thoughts or intentions.  I suspect so, yet still my mind cannot run from the seeming dichotomy.

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Filed under Omniscience, Predestination, Proverbs, Reformed

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