Summary: This sermon explores the natural attributes of God: immutable, eternal, omnipresent, omnipotent, omniscient. It then looks at how those attributes affect eash of us personally.
The Psalmist wrote in the 19th Psalm, “The heavens are telling of the glory of God and their expanse is declaring the work of his hands.” Paul adds in Rom. 1:20, “For since the creation of the world, his invisible attributes, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse.” When we look at the world around us, Paul and the Psalmist, both tell us that we see God. We can gain an understanding of God through nature, but to truly obtain a picture of who God is and what he is like, we must look to the Scriptures.
The attributes of God can be grouped into two types. The first group can be referred to as God’s natural attributes. These are the qualities of God that set him apart and make him superior to all other beings and things in the universe. The second group is God’s moral attributes. These are the qualities of character that determine how God behaves, that determine what kind of personality God possesses. This morning we want to look at the natural attributes of God, that determine his relationship to time, space, power, knowledge and the creation. God possesses all these attributes in absolute perfection. These are the attributes that make him God.
I. God is immutable. His creation changes, he does not.
God is the creator of the universe but unlike the universe he created, God never changes. Everything we see around us changes and deteriorates. ILLUSTRATION: New car . . . Abandoned farm house . . . Grand Canyon . . . our body (remember those old wedding pictures). God does not change. Change is impossible for God because all change is for better or worse and God is absolute perfection. He cannot get better and he will not get worse.
In the 102nd Psalm, David is suffering affliction and he compares the changeableness of his situation with the unchangeableness of God. He says in vss. 25-27, “Of old, You founded the earth, and the heavens are the work of Your hands. Even they will perish, but You endure; and all of them will wear out like a garment; like clothing, You will change them and they will be changed. But You are the same, and Your years will not come to an end.
God cannot change because he is God. In Malachi chapter 3, God, through Malachi, declares that judgment is coming and that it will be a time of punishment for the wicked. In Mal. 3:5-6 God says, “Then I will draw near to you for judgment; and I will be a swift witness against the sorcerers and against the adulterers and against those who swear falsely, and against those who oppress the wage earner in his wages, the widow and the orphan, and those who turn aside the alien and do not fear Me," says the LORD of hosts. “For I, the LORD, do not change; therefore you, O sons of Jacob, are not consumed.”
God does not change, and the sons of Israel do not perish. Because God is unchangeable in His purposes, and Israel as the people of God is not to perish, therefore will God exterminate the wicked out of Israel by means of judgment, in order to refine it and shape it according to its true calling.
The bible also teaches that Christ who is God, possess this same attribute of unchangeableness. In the thirteenth chapter of Hebrews, the writer is encouraging Hebrew Christians who were facing persecution and in danger of falling away. They are exhorted to following the footsteps of the faithful men through whom they became Christians in verse 7, “Remember those who led you, who spoke the word of God to you; and considering the result of their conduct, imitate their faith.” The writer then adds that these Hebrew Christians serve the same Christ of those who led them in the past. “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today, and forever.”
This attribute of God impacts all his other attributes. For God is unchangeable, so are all his attributes. God is as he was and always will be.
II. God is eternal. In relationship to time, God has no beginning and no end.
The idea of God being eternal is contained in the first verse of the bible. In Gen. 1:1, we read, “In the beginning God created . . .” There was a beginning of creation but before the beginning there was God. Even the name of God says that he is eternal. When Moses is before God at the burning bush in Exodus chapter three, God commands Moses to deliver God’s people out of bondage. Moses then begins to offer a number of excuses as to why he cannot go. In Exod. 3:13, Moses says to God, “Behold, I am going to the sons of Israel, and I will say to them, ‘The God of your fathers has sent me to you.’ Now they may say to me, ‘What is His name?’ What shall I say to them?” God then responds in vs. 14, “I AM WHO I AM”; and He said, “Thus you shall say to the sons of Israel, ‘I AM has sent me to you.’” God said, “I am!” Not “I was” or “I will be.” God always has been, is and always will be.