Tag:

Attributes

As it is difficult to understand that nature which belongs to each of God’s creatures, so there is a mystery about the nature of God, the Creator of heaven and earth.

1. Indirect Inferences that there is a Nature in God.

That a “Nature” may be predicated of God is inferred by the Apostle Paul in Galatians 4:8, where these Christians are described, prior to their conversion, as serving idols, who “by nature, were no gods”—as these false gods were assumed to have a nature, so the one true and living God must have a Nature. A similar inference is made by the Apostle Peter in…

Continue reading

Before looking into the perfections of the Godhead, it is proper to begin with a consideration of His names. Now, properly speaking, there is no need to identify God by a name. Not only is He incomprehensible, and therefore transcends the restrictions of a label, but since He is the one and only true God, it is unnecessary to distinguish Him from others. Henceforth, Plato observes that God has no name, and frequently calls Him, “The Being”. Even Moses, when asking the Lord what he should say to the children of Israel, should they ask the name of Him that sent him to them, was told by God, “I am that I am”—that is, I am the eternal Being, the Being of beings, of which the name Jehovah is expressive. Nevertheless, there are names attributed to God throughout the scriptures, taken from one or other of His attributes, which are worthy of notice. After all, is it not the names of persons and things that are usually the first that are known of them? And, if these names are not known…

Continue reading

I. The Attributes of God.

The attributes of God are distinguished by Theologians under a variety of classifications.

1. Negative and Positive Attributes.

Distinctions are sometimes made between the “negative” and “positive” attributes. The Negative Attributes are such as remove from God whatever is imperfect in creatures—since God is not finite, mutable and mortal, so He is infinite, immutable and immortal. The Positive, or Affirmative Attributes, are such as assert a perfection in God, which is in and of Himself—if these attributes are in any measure true of the creatures, such as wisdom, goodness, justice, holiness, &c., they are derived from God. Some discard this classification of attributes, for though it is easier to say what God is not, than what He is, yet in all negative attributes, some positive excellency is found.

2. Essential and Analogical Attributes.

Another arrangement is to distribute the attributes into a “twofold order”—the first and second. The essential properties of the “first order”, declare the essence of God as in Himself, such as His simplicity, perfection, infinity and immutability. These perfections are not found in the creatures. The essential properties of the “second order”, declare the essence of God as in Himself, but are also found in the creatures, such as life, immortality…

Continue reading

Since God is an uncreated spirit, He is therefore simple, immutable, infinite, omnipresent and eternal. Having considered these attributes, we proceed to look at those divine perfections that are true of Him as an active and operative spirit. The two attributes that belong to all active spirits are life and power. However, these are true of God in an infinite measure—since He is all act, so He has life in Himself and His power is almighty. We shall now consider the life of God.

Some believe this is not a single perfection of the Godhead, but is expressive of all the divine perfections. Indeed, this is true, for as it is His nature and essence, so it is Himself. This applies equally to every other attribute—each perfection is one with His nature and essence. However, the finiteness of our minds require we view…

Continue reading

Thus far, we have considered the various attributes which belong to God as a spirit—because He is uncreated, so He is spiritual, simple, immutable, infinite, immense, omnipresent and eternal; because He is active, so He is living and omnipotent. We now proceed to look at those perfections which are ascribed to God as an intelligent spirit. If God is said to have a “mind” and “understanding” (Rom 11:34; Is 40:28), then the attributes of “knowledge” and “wisdom” go together. Let us consider the knowledge, or omniscience, of God.

I. The Fact of God’s Omniscience.

That knowledge belongs to the TriUne Jehovah may be proved by the several attributes of God.

1. The Infinity of God.

Since God is unlimited and unbounded as to space, so He is omnipresent; since He is unbounded as to time, so He is eternal; since He is unbounded as to power, so He is omnipotent; since He is unbounded as to…

Continue reading

Copyright © 2019, The Association of Historic Baptists