Knowing God’s True Character Debunks the Lie that “God Doesn’t Really Care”
One of the biggest lies we can believe is that God is exactly like we are. Meaning we often think God struggles with the same failures, limitations, and weaknesses that we do. After all, if I am a certain way, then the One who created me must be the same, right? If I am limited by time and space, then God must be limited by time and space. If I am limited in power, then God must be limited in power. If I break promises, then I bet God breaks His promises too. If I tend to love only those who can love me back, then surely God loves in the same way. If I am limited in knowledge and can easily forget things and people, then God must suffer from forgetfulness as well.
However, this is the fundamental difference between God and us. He is God, and we are not. He is not limited in the ways we are. We may suffer from amnesia (partial or total loss of memory), but He doesn’t! You must realize that He is different from you. That is what it means for Him to be holy. Holy means that He is set apart. There is no one, or nothing, like Him. Out of all the things that are, He is completely different from them all. He has characteristics and attributes that only He possesses. Understanding some of these wonderful attributes of God will help you experience freedom from the lie that whispers ever so subtly in your ear, “God doesn’t really care.”
These attributes are powers only God has. They are God powers. If there were ever a moment when He stopped operating in any one of these powers, He would cease being God because it would mean He was lacking, was in need, and was, sadly, like us. It would mean He was no longer perfect. If He wasn’t perfect, then He could easily forget us. Thankfully, this is not like Him at all. So what are these powers God possesses that prove He needs nothing at all and is self-sufficient in every way? In particular, there are four characteristics of God that demonstrate He is not like us, is not limited, and will never forget us.
God Is Omnipotent
This is a fancy word that simply means God is all-powerful. God can do everything—possible or impossible. He is not limited. He will do anything He pleases, and He has the power to restrain Himself from doing anything He doesn’t want to do. His self-control is absolutely perfect. Nothing is too difficult for Him. God never gets tired. He never forgets. “Jesus looked at them and said, ‘With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible’ ” (Matthew 19:26, ESV). “Have you not known? Have you not heard? The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He does not faint or grow weary; his understanding is unsearchable” (Isaiah 40:28, ESV).
God Is Omnipresent
He is all-present. God is everywhere, so He doesn’t need anyone to take Him anywhere. He never has to pack His suitcase, buy a plane ticket, or ask for a ride in a truck. (Yes, mentioning a truck probably gives it away that I am from Texas.) He is always there. In your home. At your job. There is never a reason to run from Him, hide from Him, or try to escape Him. Wherever you run, He is already there waiting. Pick your favorite hiding spot. He found it first. If you try to escape Him, He is where you were, and He is where you’re going. He is running with you as you’re going.
He can’t forget you because He is right beside you. “Where shall I go from your Spirit? Or where shall I flee from your presence? If I ascend to heaven, you are there! If I make my bed in Sheol, you are there!” (Psalm 139:7–8, ESV).
God Is Omnibenevolent
God is all-loving. He loves perfectly and is completely full of love. His love never runs out and never lessens. He can fully and perfectly love 7.5 billion people all at the same time and never lack one ounce of love for someone else. Although He loves perfectly, He doesn’t need a relationship with us for Him to be fulfilled. He has a perfectly fulfilled relationship within Himself as the triune God. He is the complete package when it comes to unity. He is the personification of a healthy relationship all within Himself—God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. However, He still loves us perfectly. He doesn’t need us for relationship fulfillment, but we desperately need Him because we’ll never be fulfilled without Him. God extends His love to us through His Son, Jesus Christ, and the pleasure is truly ours. God meets our needs for love perfectly. “Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love” (1 John 4:8, ESV).
God Is Omniscient
This is a wonderfully hopeful truth about God that can soothe our depressed hearts. It means that He is all-knowing. There is nothing that anyone can teach Him. He never has to learn anything. There is never a moment when He has to guess, has to be told something, or has to be reminded. Did you catch that? He doesn’t have to be reminded, because He never forgets. One more time: He never forgets. He remembers everything. He knows where you’ve been, where you are, and where you’re going. Your feelings and emotions may cause you to believe that He has forgotten you, that He has amnesia. However, be reminded of this attribute and never forget that He never forgets. He is greater than your feelings. He knows everything, and that includes you. “Whenever our heart condemns us, God is greater than our heart, and he knows everything” (1 John 3:20, ESV).
Shane Pruitt is the author of 9 Common Lies Christians Believe: And Why God’s Truth is Infinitely Better. Shane has been in ministry for more than 17 years as a denominational leader, church planter, and traveling communicator. He holds a B.S. in biblical studies and a PhD in Christian counseling. Shane serves as Director of Evangelism for the Southern Baptists of Texas Convention. A popular blogger, Shane has written for Relevant, Christianity Today, the Christian Post, ChurchLeaders.com and other online journals. He and his wife, Kasi, live near Dallas, Texas, with their five children. For more information, visit shanepruitt.com.
Excerpted from 9 COMMON LIES CHRISTIANS BELIEVE AND WHY GOD’S TRUTH IS INFINITELY BETTER. Copyright © 2019 by Shane Pruitt. Published by Multnomah, an imprint of Penguin Random House LLC.