The Omniscience of God

What Others Have Said: A.W. Tozer

To say that God is omniscient is to say that He possesses perfect knowledge and therefore has no need to learn. But it is more: it is to say that God has never learned and cannot learn.

The Scriptures teach that God has never learned from anyone. ”Who hath directed the Spirit of the Lord, or being his counselor hath taught him? With whom took he counsel, and who instructed him, and taught him in the path of judgment, and taught him knowledge, and showed to Him the way of understanding?” ”For who hath known the mind of the Lord? or who hath been His counselor?” These rhetorical questions put by the prophet (Isaiah) and the apostle Paul declare that God has never learned.

From there it is only a step to the conclusion that God cannot learn. Could God at any time or in any manner receive into His mind knowledge that He did not possess and had not possessed from eternity, He would be imperfect and less than himself. To think of a God who must sit at the feet of a teacher, even though that teacher be an archangel or a seraph, is to think of someone other than the Most High God, maker of heaven and earth.

That God is omniscient is not only taught in the Scriptures, it must be inferred also from all else that is taught concerning Him. God perfectly knows Himself and, being the source and author of all things, it follows that He knows all that can be known. And this He knows instantly and with a fullness of perfection that includes every possible item of knowledge concerning everything that exists or could have existed anywhere in the universe at any time in the past or that may exist in the centuries or ages yet unborn.

God knows instantly and effortlessly all matter and all matters, all mind and every mind, all spirit and all spirits, all being and every being, all creaturehood and all creatures, every plurality and all pluralities, all law and every law, all relations, all causes, all thoughts, all mysteries, all enigmas, all feeling, all desires, every unuttered secret, all thrones and dominions, all personalities, all things visible and invisible in heaven and in earth, motion, space, time, life, death, good, evil, heaven, and hell.

Because God knows all things perfectly, He knows no thing better than any other thing, but all things equally well. He never discovers anything. He is never surprised, never amazed. He never wonders about anything nor (except when drawing men out for their own good) does He seek information or ask questions.

Our Father in heaven knows our frame and remembers that we are dust. He knew our inborn treachery, and for His own sake engaged to save us (Isa. 48:8-11). His only begotten Son, when He walked among us, felt our pains in their naked intensity of anguish. His knowledge of our afflictions and adversities is more than theoretic; it is personal, warm, and compassionate. Whatever may befall us, God knows and cares as no one else can.

Verses to Meditate Upon:

Psalm 139:4 ~ Even before a word is on my tongue, behold, O Lord, you know it altogether.

Hebrews 4:13 ~ And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are open and laid bare to the eyes of Him with whom we have to do.

1 John 3:20 ~ In whatever our heart condemns us; for God is greater than our heart and knows all things.

Questions to Consider:

  • Why is it good news and sobering news that nothing is hidden from God’s sight?
  • How would you describe the personal significance that God does not just have abstract knowledge about “stuff,” but total knowledge of you, as well as everything else?

Action to Take:

Use the acronym ACTS to pray focusing in on God’s Omniscience:

A – Adoration: Give God praise and honor for the fact that He knows all things!

C – Confess: Honestly deal with sin that you may be seeking to hide from Him.

T – Thanksgiving: Verbalize your gratitude that in all things that you go through God is fully aware of it.

S – Supplication: Pray for the needs of others and yourself. While God knows the needs already, as a good Father He invites us to make our requests known to Him.