What We Believe: God (Part 3)
While our statement of faith does not cover all of the attributes of God, I think it is good to take a look at a list of many of His attributes. Theologians don’t agree on the exact list of divine attributes, but these are some that occur on most lists, although they may be called by another name. The attributes of God are also broken into categories differently by theologians. Some divide them between “communicable” (attributes that can be shared by some degree with humans) and “incommunicable” (attributes that apply to God alone); others distinguish between God’s “natural” (referring to those that describe His essential nature) and “moral” (those that describe His interpersonal nature) attributes. For this post, I’m just going to list some attributes, without breaking them into categories. This isn’t an exhaustive list, just a mention of some significant attributes. The verses discussed also do not provide an extensive list of passages supporting each attribute, but a representative sample.
Some of the attributes of God besides holiness, omnipotence, and omniscience (covered in the previous post) are:
Self-existence: God’s existence does not depend on anyone or anything other than Himself. The name I AM suggests this fundamental eternal existence.
Immensity: God is beyond the confines of the universe. In 2 Chronicles 6:18 Solomon recognizes that nothing can contain God.
Eternity: God always was, is, and will be. He is not bound by time, since He is the Creator of time. Romans 1:20 speaks to the way creation reveals His eternal nature.
Immutability: God does not change in His essential nature. While He may choose to carry out His plans in a variety of ways, who He is truly is remains the same. This immutability ensures that God is faithful to Himself and His purposes (Malachi 3:6).
Righteousness: God always upholds the right over the wrong. Even in planning our salvation, the righteousness of God was maintained through the sacrifice of Jesus (Romans 10:1-13).
Love: God has eternally existed in a relationship of love (which we will look at later in this series), and everything He does is done in love (1 John 4:7-10).
Truth: God Himself is the standard of what is true. In Isaiah 45:18-19 He declares that He speaks the truth and declares what is right.
Each of these attributes could use an entire post for itself. (You can find entire books devoted to some of these!) This brief look just gives us a glimpse of who and what God is. We will see some of these attributes again as we continue our look in future posts at what this statement says about God.