Misunderstood Attributes of God: Omnipotence | Tabletalk, May 2022

The May 2022 issue of Tabletalk, Ligonier’s monthly devotional magazine, is devoted to the subject of “Misunderstood Attributes of God.”

In his article for “Coram Deo,” editor Burk Parsons drives home the need to treat the attributes of God and for all Christians to read about them and study them:

“This is one reason that we read books, write books, and publish magazines such as Tabletalk—that we might know, love, glorify, and enjoy God more and more in all that we think, say, and do. Therefore, while the subject of this issue of Tabletalk might seem a little academic for some, it is nevertheless necessary for Christians to study. Due to poor teaching and theological misunderstanding, even churches that hold fast to Scripture as God’s inerrant Word are unwittingly raising a generation of people who unknowingly profess heresy more than the theology of the Bible. The desperate need of our generation is not only for the world to know God but, as Dr. R.C. Sproul emphasized, for the church to know God. To know God means to know our theology, and to know our theology means to know God’s revelation about Himself to the end that we might be led back to God, by the grace of God, through the power of God the Holy Spirit, to worship God so that God alone might get the glory. Simply put, sound theology leads to doxology.”

One of the featured articles treats the divine attribute of omnipotence, considering especially two matters: the scope of God’s power (how far does it extend?, and can God’s omnipotence come in conflict with other of His attributes?) and the question of God’s power over evil. About the latter – a perennial question among believers and non-believers, author R. Charlton Wynne has this to say:

“This brings us to the second question: Is God’s power reconcilable with the reality of evil? If God by His omnipotence can manifest only His holy and good character, how can there be evil in the world? Sometimes the very personal and heart-wrenching cries of believers and nonbelievers alike (“How could God allow this to happen?” “Where was God when this took place?”) lead to doubts about or even denials of God’s omnipotence. This presents one version of the so-called problem of evil: If God is all-good, and evil exists, then God cannot be all-powerful.

“Again, though, a hidden assumption drives this challenge to divine omnipotence. The argument assumes that a good and omnipotent God would always act immediately to preclude all evil. But Scripture teaches both that God has ordained what is evil (though man, not God, remains responsible for it; Eccl. 7:29) and that He has done so, in part, that He might reveal His power over evil, even to accomplish His good purposes through it (e.g., Gen. 50:20). This is no pious platitude. It is the solemn trust and great solace of every humble Christian in the face of the adversities, disappointments, and tragedies of this life. God is omnipotent and altogether good. Trusting that both are true grounds hope and encouragement for every believing heart.”

Following which, he appropriately closes with these words under the heading “Omnipotence and the Gospel”:

“The central and most stunning revelation of God’s utterly holy character through His omnipotence over evil is found in the gospel of Jesus Christ. As Jesus healed the lame, stopped the wind, opened the eyes of the blind, and rose victorious over death, He showed Himself to be “the power of God and the wisdom of God” (1 Cor. 1:24). He continues His almighty work in resurrecting the hearts of those whom the Father irresistibly draws to Himself, and He will complete that saving work in them on the day He raises His people to imperishable glory (John 6:44). And when He judges the world, re-creates the cosmos, and brings heaven to earth, the gathered chorus of saints will sing of His power: “Hallelujah! For the Lord our God the Almighty reigns” (Rev. 19:6).”

Source: Omnipotence | Tabletalk

Published in: on May 21, 2022 at 9:28 PM  Leave a Comment