The mystery of God’s omnipresence is a biblical concept that is sometimes hard to grasp. We will explore this mystery and how it impacts our daily lives. Understanding this concept will radically change your life, so let’s dive in.
The first thing that we have to do is define God’s Omnipresence. Wayne Grudem defines God’s Omnipresence as “God does not have size or spatial dimensions and is present at every point of space with his whole being, yet God acts differently in different places. “ God is present everywhere. Charles Hodge defines it similarly, “He fills all space. He is not absent from any portion of space, nor more present in one portion than in another. He is equally present, at all times and in all places. “ The Bible tells us that there is nowhere we can go that God isn’t already there. (Psalms 139:7-10)
God is everywhere! It would be easy to veer off into eastern religion where god is everywhere and everything. He is in the computer, the desk and the ground we walk on. To try to understand this aspect of God we have to let go of our concept of physical matter.
God is not a physical being.
1 Kings 8:27 tells us that even the highest heaven cannot contain Him therefore He does not have spatial dimensions. John 4:24 tells us that “God is spirit” and David continues in Psalms 139:7 “where can I go from your Spirit?” Knowing that God is a spirit helps to understand the idea of His Omnipresence.
What are the characteristics of His Omnipresence?
While God is not physically present, His presence is still real and His power, knowledge, and ability to act are universally present. John Frame in his book “Doctrine of God” says that “God can instantly act at any place; he knows everything that happens, and he personally governs and directs everything in the universe.”
Biblical Examples Of God’s Omnipresence
What does God’s omnipresence look like in our daily lives? A friend of mine John Paul Jackson shares a story of an encounter with the Lord that illustrates God’s omniscience (All Knowing) and his omnipresence. One day the Lord told him that He would give him a taste of how well He knew him. He says that for a few moments he knew every hair, every organ and every cell in his body. This story gives us a small glimpse of God’s omnipresence. The Bible gives us sever examples of His omnipresence.
- Holds together all creation – Col 1:17
- He gives us life – Acts 17:28
- The Spirit dwells in us – Rom 8:9, 11, Eph 2:22, 3:17
- Restrains evil – 2 Thess 2:1-12
- God is present to bless (Ps 139:7-10)
- He sees good and evil – Prov. 15:3
When you look at each of these examples it is really amazing. He holds together all creation. Science is just now discovering this truth. The physicists call it a glueon. He gives us life. Think about it we are just a bunch of chemicals, minerals and water but yet we are living.
The Bible tells us that God’s Spirit lives with in us. Omnipresence would explain that. Also that he restrains evil. It talks about in the last His restraint will be removed and evil will abound.
How does God’s omnipresence apply to our everyday lives? David gives us a part of this answer in Psalms 139:7-11
“Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence? 8 If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there. 9 If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, 10 even there your hand will guide me your right hand will hold me fast. 11 If I say, “Surely the darkness will hide me and the light become night around me,”12 even the darkness will not be dark to you; the night will shine like the day, for darkness is as light to you.”
David tells us that we cannot escape God, he is always there but the positive message is that no matter where we are or in what circumstances we find our selves He will be there to “guide” us and the He will strengthen us.
Also we can not hide who we really are from Him. He sees both the good and the bad yet He still loves us. He also sees our sin there is no hiding it so we might as well confess it and deal with it other wise it will catch up with us and cause greater problems.
In parts II and III we will explore God’s manifest presence and His indwelling presence.
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