Bible Question:

Is it true that God is not almighty since He cannot do things that would contradict Himself?

Bible Answer:

The answer to most Bible questions is found or rooted in the character of God. The opening verses of the Bible do not try to prove that God exists, they assume that God exists, and then we are told that God created the universe. The creation of the universe gives us tremendous information about God and Genesis 1 through 11 reveal additional information about God.

The Creation Reveals God Is Infinite

In the answer to the question,  “Can God create a rock so heavy that He cannot lift it?”, we discovered that God can do anything that He decides to  do (Luke 1:37).  He can do anything within His will. It is important to understand that God can do anything within His character.

In Genesis 1 we discover that God created our vast universe. He created light, water, animals, people and the entire universe, not just the earth. He established all the laws of physics. The opening chapter reveals our God is infinitely powerful or almighty. The Hebrew word for Almighty” is  sadday, from which we get the name El Shaddai. It means “all power.”  The Greek word is pantokrator, and it means “to have all power.”[1] The opening chapter of Genesis reveals an all wise, knowledgeable, relational and compassionate God.

Psalm 147:5 reveals that God has all understanding. Jeremiah 32:17 and Matthew 19:26 reveal that God has infinite power.

Ah Lord GOD! Behold, You have made the heavens and the earth by Your great power and by Your outstretched arm!Nothing is too difficult for You . . .  Jeremiah 32:17 (NASB)

And looking at them Jesus said to them, “With people this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.” Matthew 19:26 (NASB)

God is eternal (Isaiah 43:13; 44:6), omniscient (Job 34:21; Psalm 139:1-6) and omnipresent (Proverbs 15:3; Psalm 139:7-12). In short, God is infinite in all of His attributes (Romans 11:33-36; 1 Timothy 1:17). There is nothing that God cannot do if He chooses to do it.

God Restrains Himself

While scripture reveals that our God is infinite in all of His attributes, it also reveals that God restrains Himself because His character or attributes also include holiness (Exodus 15:11; Psalm 99:9), righteousness (Psalm 89:14; 119:137), love (John 3:16; Romans 5:8), truth (Psalm 31:5; Psalm 117:2) and mercy (Psalm 130:3-4; 145:8-9). Maybe the one attribute often ignored is that God’s character will never change. He is immutable (Malachi 3:6).

Conclusion:

The character of God reveals that God can do anything that He chooses to do, but He will never violate His character or His plans. Job 37:23 reminds us that while He has all power He will not sin.

The Almighty — we cannot find Him;
He is exalted in power
And He will not do violence to justice and abundant righteousness. Job 37.23 (NASB)

God is not a man, that He should lie,
Nor a son of man, that He should repent;
Has He said, and will He not do it?
Or has He spoken, and will He not make it good? Numbers 23:19 (NASB)

 

References:

1. Lou and Nida. Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament. United Bible Soceities. 1989. vol. 2. p. 139.

Reference Links:

Can God create a rock so heavy that He cannot lift it?
Who Is God? – Discipleship Series
Amazing Attributes of God, part 1
Amazing Attributes of God, part 2