The Attributes of God: Omniscient
We spend our lives wondering, don't we?
"I wonder if I'll get the job."
"I wonder if I'll get married."
"I wonder why this is happening."
It's natural. We long for answers—for knowledge of things past, present, and future. In a world where Google is our nerdy best friend, we're tempted to become frustrated by our lack of understanding, or worse, we might even become despairing. Our sinful nature causes us to long for the perfect knowledge that isn't attainable for the human mind. But even if our "why's and what if's" go unanswered, we have a trustworthy God who holds the answers in his hands.
God Knows All Things
"Who has measured the Spirit of the Lord, or what man shows him his counsel? Whom did he consult, and who made him understand? Who taught him the path of justice, and taught him knowledge, and showed him the way of understanding?" Isaiah 40:13-14
Who taught the Lord knowledge? Not you, not me, not anyone. While you and I have been taught everything we know, the holy God of Scripture can't be taught (Romans 11:33-36). There's nothing he doesn't know. He's "perfect in knowledge" (Job 37:16). This perfect knowledge is displayed clearly throughout his word. He knows everything about everything that has happened or existed in all time. He knows because he ordained it.
"Nothing has ever come to pass, or ever will, merely because God knew it. The cause of all things is the will of God...So God's knowledge does not arise from things because they are or will be, but because he has ordained them to be." A.W. Pink, The Attributes of God
Not only that, God knows everything about everyone because he created us (Psalm 139). Furthermore, he knows everything that occurs or will occur in the world he created and continues to sustain all things even as you read these words (Job 28:24). And this, mind-blowing as it is, only scratches the surface of his omniscience.
He Knows Everything About Us
"O Lord, you have searched me and known me!" Psalm 139:1
A quick reading of Psalm 139 will convince you of God's complete knowledge of the people he's created. Our friends may know us well but no one fully understands who we are with the exception of the Creator (Psalm 139:13). He knows how many hairs are on our head, how many days he has planned for us (Matthew 10:30; Psalm 139:16). He alone can "search our heart" and know all that resides within it, "for [he] only, know[s] the hearts of all the children of mankind" (Psalm 139:4, 23; 1 Samuel 16:7; Acts15:8). Our thoughts, then, are also exposed to the God of the Universe. He knows and discerns our thoughts as well as our motives (Psalm 139:2, 23; Hebrews 4:12; 1 Chronicles 28; Ezekiel 11:5; Revelation 2:23).
He's also well aware and sovereign over the circumstances we face here on earth (Psalm 139:3, 5; Jeremiah 29:11; Psalm 56:8; Isaiah 43:2). He even "knows what we need before we ask him" (Matthew 6:8).
He Knows Everything About Our Sin
If God knows all, then he must see all. This truth should make us tremble. Nothing is hidden from him. All sin is exposed by his light.
“And no creature is hidden from his sight, but all are naked and exposed to the eyes of him to whom we must give account.” Hebrews 4:13
This omniscient God, is a God to whom we are accountable. This is scary news for sinners. Our only hope is repentance and casting ourselves upon Christ knowing "[he has] set our iniquities before [him], our secret sins in the light of [his] presence." (Psalm 90:8). We cannot hide anywhere but the shadow of his wings. Only there is offered a refuge from sin and peace with the Father in Christ (Romans 5:1).
With this in mind, how comforting is it that he knows his sheep—he knows those who are forgiven, the ones covered in his blood, those who are his (John 6:64).
He Knows Our Circumstances
If God knows all and sees all, then certainly his eyes are on the righteous. And not one tear goes unnoticed by our loving Father (Psalm 56:8).
"The eyes of the LORD are toward the righteous and his ears toward their cry." Psalm 34:15
Many times, life leaves us confused and questioning. We feel alone and wonder if God cares. It's comforting to know that he "keeps count of our tossings" and "puts our tears in his bottle." (Psalm 56:8). It may escape our ability to know the future, but because God is all-knowing and fully present, we can trust that he goes before us and walks alongside us in all of life's circumstances (Psalm 139:5).
Having an understanding of his wisdom and sovereignty and pairing it with the truth of God's goodness, we can entrust our every moment to the God who knows all things.
His Secret Knowledge
"The secret things belong to the LORD our God, but the things that are revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may do all the words of this law." Deuteronomy 29:29
We may never receive the answers we desire here on earth, but we can trust God to steward the "secret things" knowing he withholds no good thing from his children, including the answers we long for (Psalm 84:11). If it were good for us to know, he would reveal it to us.
We will never be able to fully comprehend the omniscience of the Almighty God. In Christ "are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge" (Colossians 2:3). What a gift we've been given that we get to know the God who has perfect knowledge!
This truth should draw out a reverence and worship in the hearts of all people. It should beckon us to bow in humility knowing he is God and we are not. May it evoke the words of the Psalmist to find their place on our tongue, saying, “Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is high; I cannot attain it” (Psalm 139:6). And may it instill a deep trust within our hearts in the God who knows all and sees all.
Brittany Allen is a follower of Christ, wife to James, and momma to three in Heaven. She exists to bring God glory and prays her writing is an avenue for that. She longs to encourage women to think and live biblically and thrives on seeing women open up their hearts to the Savior and to other women around them.