3. Attributes of God the Father

3. Attributes of God the Father

An attribute is a characteristic belonging to its subject and by which the subject is identified. God makes Himself known by His attributes.

Why is it so important for us to take the time to understand the attributes of God? I want us to see that there are some very practical benefits when we learn more of the wonderful character of our great God. We will find knowing God to be very helpful, especially when confronted with trials.

There are some excellent examples in Scripture of people who drew off of their knowledge of God when they found themselves in desperate circumstances. I would suggest that we too will find comfort in our trials when we get to know God better.

Hab 1:12-3 – Are You not from everlasting, O LORD, my God, my Holy One? We will not die. You, O LORD, have appointed them to judge; And You, O Rock, have established them to correct. Your eyes are too pure to approve evil, And You can not look on wickedness with favor.

2 Chr 20:1-9 – Now it came about after this that the sons of Moab and the sons of Ammon, together with some of the Meunites, came to make war against Jehoshaphat. Then some came and reported to Jehoshaphat, saying, A great multitude is coming against you from beyond the sea, out of Aram and behold, they are in Hazazontamar (that is Engedi). Jehoshaphat was afraid and turned his attention to seek the LORD, and proclaimed a fast throughout all Judah. So Judah gathered together to seek help from the LORD; they even came from all the cities of Judah to seek the LORD. Then Jehoshaphat stood in the assembly of Judah and Jerusalem, in the house of the LORD before the new court, and he said, O LORD, the God of our fathers, are You not God in the heavens? And are You not ruler over all the kingdoms of the nations? Power and might are in Your hand so that no one can stand against You. Did You not, O our God, drive out the inhabitants of this land before Your people Israel and give it to the descendants of Abraham Your friend forever? They have lived in it, and have built You a sanctuary there for Your name, saying, Should evil come upon us, the sword, or judgment, or pestilence, or famine, we will stand before this house and before You (for Your name is in this house) and cry to You in our distress, and You will hear and deliver us.

Rehearsing the attributes of God, to God, is not for His benefit, but for ours. It refocuses our mind on the God in which we profess to believe in.

There are two types of attributes: communicable and non-communicable.

  • Communicable attributes are those attributes that are shared by mankind to some degree.
  • Non-communicable attributes are true of God and God alone.

Here are some of God’s attributes:

Omnipresent — Omnipotent — Omniscient — Immutable — Infinite — Transcendent

— Self-existent — Self-sufficient — Sovereign — Eternal — Merciful — Gracious —

Incomprehensible — Holy — Just — Truthful — Love –Faithful — Wise — Perfect —

Jealous — Wrathful — Long-suffering — Righteous

A. God is Self-existent

God does not need us or the rest of His creation for anything. He is totally complete without all of that which He created. He requires no assistance from outside sources to continue to exist. No part of His creation met any kind of need that He had. Yet at the same time, His creation has the potential to bring glory to Him and bring Him joy.

God is the ground of His own existence. His only necessity is the necessity of His own being. All beings, except God Himself are dependent beings.

Acts 17:24-25 – The God who made the world and all things in it, since He is Lord of heaven and earth, does not dwell in temples made with hands; nor is He served by human hands, as though He needed anything, since He Himself gives to all people life and breath and all things.

It’s not simply that God does not need anything, God could not need the creation for anything. As much as God doesn’t need us, that’s how much we need Him.

Prior to the creation of man and the entire universe, the Triune God existed in eternity past in total completeness. They had perfect love, fellowship and glory for all eternity.

Ps. 90:2 – Before the mountains were born Or You gave birth to the earth and the world, Even from everlasting to everlasting, You are God.

John 17:5 – Now, Father, glorify Me together with Yourself, with the glory which I had with You before the world was.

John 17:24 – Father, I desire that they also, whom You have given Me, be with Me where I am, so that they may see My glory which You have given Me, for You loved Me before the foundation of the world.

The fact that God is self-existent should not lead us to conclude that His creations is meaningless. His creation is meaningful because God has determined that we would be meaningful to Him.

Is. 43:7 – Everyone who is called by My name, And whom I have created for My glory, Whom I have formed, even whom I have made.

Is. 62:1-5 – (Israel’s Future) For Zion’s sake I will not keep silent, And for Jerusalem’s sake I will not keep quiet, Until her righteousness goes forth like brightness, And her salvation like a torch that is burning. The nations will see your righteousness, And all kings your glory; And you will be called by a new name Which the mouth of the Lord will designate. You will also be a crown of beauty in the hand of the Lord, And a royal diadem in the hand of your God. It will no longer be said to you, Forsaken, Nor to your land will it any longer be said, Desolate; But you will be called, My delight is in her, And your land, Married; For the Lord delights in you, And to Him your land will be married. For as a young man marries a virgin, So your sons will marry you; And as the bridegroom rejoices over the bride, So your God will rejoice over you.

B. God is Omniscient

Omniscience simply stated means that God has all knowledge. He knows everything, He never learns anything. Nothing is a surprise to Him. He knows all things actual, possible, past, present, and future, in one eternal act.

Insights Into God’s Omniscience

God knows all things that exist in actuality. David recognized God’s omniscience by stating that He knew his actions, his thoughts and even his words before they were spoken.

God knows all the variables concerning things that have not occurred. His knowledge is infinite.

God knows all future events. As a result of God being eternal, and knows all things, events that are future to man are an “eternal now” to God. He know the end from the beginning.

God has full complete knowledge of everything at all times. His knowledge is not acquired through observation or reason.

Ps. 139:1-4 – O Lord, You have searched me and known me. You know when I sit down and when I rise up; You understand my thought from afar. You scrutinize my path and my lying down, And are intimately acquainted with all my ways. Even before there is a word on my tongue, Behold, O Lord, You know it all.

Is. 65:24 – It will also come to pass that before they call, I will answer; and while they are still speaking, I will hear.

Heb. 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.

Matt. 11:21 – Woe to you, Chorazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! For if the miracles had occurred in Tyre and Sidon which occurred in you, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes.

Rom. 11:33-34 – Oh, the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments and unfathomable His ways! For who has known the mind of the Lord, or who became His counselor?

God’s knowledge is immediate awareness, not based on experience, deductions or inductions of fact or truth. His knowledge is not acquired knowledge, for God’s knowledge of all things is eternal, present always in His mind.

Practical Applications Of God’s Omniscience

God knows our every fall, our every sin, and our every backsliding, yet his heart is fixed upon us in love.

Since God knows everything, and we don’t, it’s wisdom on our part to ask for His will for our life and for His guidance and directions for all the decisions we need to make.

This should bring tremendous comfort to all true believers. He know you are here and cares about you. He knows your cares, your anxieties and all your needs.

It should be an incentive for us to give our lives totally to Him.

Rom. 5:8 – But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Messiah died for us.

1 John 3:16 – We know love by this, that He laid down His life for us; and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren.

1 John 4:9-10 – By this the love of God was manifested in us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world so that we might live through Him. In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins.

What Does This Mean for the Unbeliever

It promises an accurate judgment.

It shows the folly and inferiority of mere human wisdom.

Jer. 16:17 – For My eyes are on all their ways; they are not hidden from My face, nor is their iniquity concealed from My eyes.

Rom. 2:2 – And we know that the judgment of God rightly falls upon those who practice such things.

Prov. 3:5-6 – Trust in the Lord with all your heart And do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He will make your paths straight.

Because God has all knowledge, that also makes Him all wise. His wisdom guarantees that whatever God chooses for Himself or for His creation is the very best that could have been chosen. There is no comparison between the wisdom of man and the wisdom of God.

1 Cor. 1:20-2:5 – Where is the wise man? Where is the scribe? Where is the debater of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world? For since in the wisdom of God the world through its wisdom did not come to know God, God was well-pleased through the foolishness of the message preached to save those who believe. For indeed Jews ask for signs and Greeks search for wisdom; but we preach Messiah crucified, to Jews a stumbling block and to Gentiles foolishness, but to those who are the called, both Jews and Greeks, Messiah the power of God and the wisdom of God. Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men. For consider your calling, brethren, that there were not many wise according to the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble; but God has chosen the foolish things of the world to shame the wise, and God has chosen the weak things of the world to shame the things which are strong, and the base things of the world and the despised God has chosen, the things that are not, so that He may nullify the things that are, so that no man may boast before God. But by His doing you are in Messiah Jesus, who became to us wisdom from God, and righteousness and sanctification, and redemption, so that, just as it is written, Let him who boasts, boast in the Lord. And when I came to you, brethren, I did not come with superiority of speech or of wisdom, proclaiming to you the testimony of God. For I determined to know nothing among you except Jesus the Messiah, and Him crucified. I was with you in weakness and in fear and in much trembling, and my message and my preaching were not in persuasive words of wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, so that your faith would not rest on the wisdom of men, but on the power of God.

C. God is Omnipresent

Omnipresence simply stated means that God, in His totality, is everywhere present at all times. However, He is not present in everything, that is Pantheism.

Insights Into God’s Omnipresence

This does not contradict the fact that there are varying degrees of the manifestations of His presence.

There is never a time when one can escape the presence of God.

God is present different ways in different places. No one can ever hide from God.

Adam and Eve, Jonah, and other have tried it without success.

There is never a time when one can escape the presence of God.

Sometimes God is present to bless, sometimes to punish.

Ps. 139:7-10 – Where can I go from Your Spirit? Or where can I flee from Your presence? If I ascend to heaven, You are there; If I make my bed in Sheol, behold, You are there. If I take the wings of the dawn, If I dwell in the remotest part of the sea, Even there Your hand will lead me, And Your right hand will lay hold of me.

Jer. 23:23-24 – Am I a God who is near, declares the Lord, And not a God far off? Can a man hide himself in hiding places So I do not see him? declares the Lord. Do I not fill the heavens and the earth? declares the Lord.

Ps. 16:11 – You will make known to me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; In Your right hand there are pleasures forever.

Amos 9:1-4 – I saw the Lord standing beside the altar, and He said, Smite the capitals so that the thresholds will shake, And break them on the heads of them all! Then I will slay the rest of them with the sword; They will not have a fugitive who will flee, Or a refugee who will escape. Though they dig into Sheol, From there will My hand take them; And though they ascend to heaven, From there will I bring them down. Though they hide on the summit of Carmel, I will search them out and take them from there; And though they conceal themselves from My sight on the floor of the sea, From there I will command the serpent and it will bite them. And though they go into captivity before their enemies, From there I will command the sword that it slay them, And I will set My eyes against them for evil and not for good.

Understanding God’s omnipresence, will bless and comfort us as we consider that there is no place where we can go where God’s presence is absent. God was with Joseph in prison, Daniel in the den of lions, Nehemiah in the emperor’s palace, Esther before the king, Paul on the ship during the storm and on and on.

Practical Applications Of God’s Omnipresence

This should produce a tremendous amount of comfort in the heart of a true believer.

It should be an incentive for boldness as we serve the Lord.

It should motivate us to holiness.

Matt. 28:19-20 – Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.

Heb. 13:5 – …I will never desert you, nor will I ever forsake you.

Ps. 119:168 – I keep Your precepts and Your testimonies, For all my ways are before You.

Prov. 15:3 – The eyes of the Lord are in every place, Watching the evil and the good.

D. God is Omnipotent

Omnipotence simply stated means that God is all powerful. God is all powerful and able to do whatever He wills. Since His will is limited by His nature, God can do everything that is in harmony with His perfections. There are certain things that God cannot do, because it would be a violation of His very being. God cannot do things that are not in harmony with His nature. He cannot lie, or go back on His promises He has made in his Word, or sin. To do so would be a violation of His own standards. For example see: Titus 1:2, Heb. 6:18, 2 Timothy 2:13, and James 1:13.

Insights Into God’s Omnipotence

There is nothing He cannot do which is in agreement with His holy character.

The word “Almighty” is used at least 56 times in the Bible and is used t speak of God and never anybody else.

It is no more difficult for God to make an entire universe than it if for Him to make a butterfly. The reason is because He never tires. God’s power is revealed in creation, preservation, redemption, and the resurrection, just to name a few.

Matt. 19:26 – And looking at them Jesus said to them, With people this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.

Ps. 115:3 – But our God is in the heavens; He does whatever He pleases.

Rev. 19:6 – Then I heard something like the voice of a great multitude and like the sound of many waters and like the sound of mighty peals of thunder, saying, Hallelujah! For the Lord our God, the Almighty, reigns.

Is. 40:28 – Do you not know? Have you not heard? The Everlasting God, the Lord, the Creator of the ends of the earth does not become weary or tired. His understanding is inscrutable.

Ps. 33:6 – By the word of the Lord the heavens were made, And by the breath of His mouth all their host.

Ps. 77:15 – You have by Your power redeemed Your people, The sons of Jacob and Joseph.

2 Cor. 13:4 – For indeed He was crucified because of weakness, yet He lives because of the power of God. For we also are weak in Him, yet we will live with Him because of the power of God directed toward you.

Heb. 1:3 – And He is the radiance of His glory and the exact representation of His nature, and upholds all things by the word of His power. When He had made purification of sins, He sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high.

Practical Applications Of God’s Omnipotence

This should produce a tremendous amount of comfort in the heart of a true believer.

It is the basis of daily confidence and trust.

It is the basis for our worship.

It is the basis of assurance of our salvation.

2 Kin. 17:36 – But the Lord, who brought you up from the land of Egypt with great power and with an outstretched arm, Him you shall fear, and to Him you shall bow yourselves down, and to Him you shall sacrifice.

John 10:27-29 – My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me; and I give eternal life to them, and they will never perish; and no one will snatch them out of My hand. My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand.

Eph. 3:20 – Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us.

E. God is Immutable

Immutability means that God never changes in His being, essence, character or nature. Who He was in eternity past is who He is today and who He is today is who He will be tomorrow. God does not evolve into a different being with time, nor does He improve with age. Because God does not change, we can count on what He has promised in His Word to come to pass.

Insights Into God’s Immutability

The fact that God is immutable doesn’t mean that He doesn’t deal differently with people at different times. Example: Law and Grace. Change is always for better or for worse, but since God is absolute perfection, improvement or deterioration are impossible for Him.

Ps. 33:11 – The counsel of the Lord stands forever, The plans of His heart from generation to generation.

Ps. 102:25-27 – 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.

James 1:17 – Every good thing given and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow.

Is. 46:9-11 -Remember the former things long past, For I am God, and there is no other; I am God, and there is no one like Me, Declaring the end from the beginning, And from ancient times things which have not been done, Saying, My purpose will be established, And I will accomplish all My good pleasure; Calling a bird of prey from the east, The man of My purpose from a far country. Truly I have spoken; truly I will bring it to pass. I have planned it, surely I will do it.

Mal. 3:6 – For I, the Lord, do not change; therefore you, O sons of Jacob, are not consumed.

Practical Applications Of God’s Immutability

Knowing that God doesn’t change gives us the assurance that what the Bible says about Him is still true today.

It’s the basis of our complete confidence and trust in the Word of God.

It’s the basis of the security of our salvation.

F. God is Love

Love is not merely one of His attributes, but His very nature. Love is who and what God is all about. God’s love is self-giving for the benefit of others. This attribute of God shows that it is part of His nature to give of Himself for the well-being of others. The very heart of God’s love is characterized by being sacrificial in nature.

Insights Into God’s Love

God’s love has always existed because the members of the Trinity express love toward each other and they have been around for all eternity.

The self-giving love that characterizes God is clearly expressed in His relation-ship to human beings, especially to sinful man.

1 John 4:8 – The one who does not love does not know God, for God is love.

John 17:24 – Father, I desire that they also, whom You have given Me, be with Me where I am, so that they may see My glory which You have given Me, for You loved Me before the foundation of the world.

John 3:35 – The Father loves the Son and has given all things into His hand.

1 John 4:9-10 – By this the love of God was manifested in us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world so that we might live through Him. In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent

His Son to be the propitiation for our sins.

John 14:31 – but so that the world may know that I love the Father, I do exactly as the Father commanded Me.

Rom. 5:8 – But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Messiah died for us.

Insights Into God’s Love

Our love for God is best characterized by our obedience to Him as demonstrated by keeping the commandments of the Lord Jesus.

As recipients of God’s love, the fitting thing for us to be doing is loving our fellow man.

1 John 5:3 – For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments; and His commandments are not burdensome.

Matt. 22:37-39 – And He said to him, You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the great and foremost commandment. The second is like it, You shall love your neighbor as yourself.

1 John 4:11 – Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.

Rom. 5:5 – and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us.

One of the best ways to demonstrate that we are a true disciple of Jesus is by the love that we show for one another. We don’t simply love those who love us, (the Pharisees did that) but we are commanded to love our enemies.

Practical Applications Of God’s Love

No matter what circumstances we find ourselves in, we still know that God loves us, because He proved His love for us by sending Jesus to die for our sins.

If God loved us while we were sinners, He certainly doesn’t love us less if we are a child of His.

G. God is Holy

The fact that God is holy means that He possesses absolute perfection in every detail and that He is completely separate from evil in His Person and in His dealings with men.

Insights Into God’s Holiness

The attribute of God’s holiness is the only one that is repeated three times as seen in Isa. 6:1-3.

God’s holiness speaks of His divine perfection and His moral purity. God is absolutely separate from and superior to His creation, while at the same time He is set apart from all that is unclean.

Ex. 15:11 – Who is like You among the gods, O Lord? Who is like You, majestic in holiness, Awesome in praises, working wonders?

Ps. 5:4-6 – For You are not a God who takes pleasure in wickedness; No evil dwells with You. The boastful shall not stand before Your eyes; You hate all who do iniquity. You destroy those who speak falsehood; The Lord abhors the man of bloodshed and deceit. But as for me, by Your abundant lovingkindness I will enter Your house, At Your holy temple I will bow in reverence for You.

Is. 6:1-3 – In the year of King Uzziah’s death I saw the Lord sitting on a throne, lofty and exalted, with the train of His robe filling the temple. Seraphim stood above Him, each having six wings: with two he covered his face, and with two he covered his feet, and with two he flew. And one called out to another and said, Holy, Holy, Holy, is the Lord of hosts, The whole earth is full of His glory.

Is. 57:15 – For thus says the high and exalted One Who lives forever, whose name is Holy, I dwell on a high and holy place, And also with the contrite and lowly of spirit In order to revive the spirit of the lowly And to revive the heart of the contrite.

God’s holiness provides the pattern for true believers to imitate. He commands them to be holy because He is holy. This quality is so important, Scripture teaches that without holiness, no one will see the Lord.

1 Pet. 1:14-16 – As obedient children, do not be conformed to the former lusts which were yours in your ignorance, but like the Holy One who called you, be holy yourselves also in all your behavior; because it is written, You shall be holy, for I am holy.

Heb. 12:14 – Pursue peace with all men, and the sanctification without which no one will see the Lord.

2 Cor. 7:1 – Therefore, having these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all defilement of flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.

Practical Applications Of God’s Holiness

As believers progress in sanctification, they will find themselves being more and more like their Savior the Lord Jesus. It is predestined for this to happen for all who are truly saved.

God doesn’t, nor can He grow in the area of holiness. He is already perfectly holy.

H. God is Truthful

God’s truthfulness means that He is the one true God and that all that He says and has revealed about Himself and His creation is true, reliable and trustworthy. God represents things as they really are. All that He says and does can be trusted.

Insights Into God’s Truthfulness

God is the sole source and standard for truth. There is no source, or higher standard for truth than God Himself.

There is nothing that man can learn or discover through any kind of science or other field of learning that can prove God to be wrong in what He has revealed about Himself or His creation.

Jer. 10:10-11 – But the Lord is the true God; He is the living God and the everlasting King. At His wrath the earth quakes, And the nations cannot endure His indignation. Thus you shall say to them, The gods that did not make the heavens and the earth will perish from the earth and from under the heavens.

John 17:3 – This is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus the Messiah whom You have sent.

Ps. 119:160 – The sum of Your word is truth, And every one of Your righteous ordinances is everlasting.

Rom. 3:4 – May it never be! Rather, let God be found true, though every man be found a liar,…

John 17:17 – Sanctify them in the truth; Your word is truth.

Heb. 6:18 – so that by two unchangeable things in which it is impossible for God to lie, we who have taken refuge would have strong encouragement to take hold of the hope set before us.

Practical Applications Of God’s Truthfulness

That which He has told us in His Word can be completely relied upon.

God can and should be trusted and believed in more that any human being that we know.

I. God is Faithful

God’s faithfulness means that He will always do what He has said and fulfill all that He has promised. He is faithful to Himself, to His Word and to His people. By His faithfulness, God proves Himself to be true in all He has promised. As a result, God can always be taken at His word.

Insights Into God’s Faithfulness

Not only is God faithful to His promises that He has made, but all He has said about Himself and His creations is true and faithful.

There is no one who we can trust more that God is all matters of life. He can completely be relied upon to do all that He has spoken.

2 Tim. 2:13 – If we are faithless, He remains faithful, for He cannot deny Himself.

Heb. 11:11 – By faith even Sarah herself received ability to conceive, even beyond the proper time of life, since she considered Him faithful who had promised.

1 Cor. 1:9 – God is faithful, through whom you were called into fellowship with His Son, Jesus the Messiah our Lord.

Ps. 36:5 – Your lovingkindness, O Lord, extends to the heavens, Your faithfulness reaches to the skies.

Lam. 3:22-23 – The Lord’s lovingkindnesses indeed never cease, For His compassions never fail. They are new every morning; Great is Your faithfulness.

1 Pet. 4:19 – Therefore, those also who suffer according to the will of God shall entrust their souls to a faithful Creator in doing what is right.

God’s faithfulness can be seen in a very special way in His dealings with the Jewish people. Even though, in some circles, there are many who challenge that God’s promises are still going to be fulfilled by Israel, I believe the Bible clearly teaches that they will.

Deut. 7:9 – Know therefore that the Lord your God, He is God, the faithful God, who keeps His covenant and His lovingkindness to a thousandth generation…

Josh. 21:45 – Not one of the good promises which the Lord had made to the house of Israel failed; all came to pass.

Ps. 89:33-36 – But I will not break off My lovingkindness from him, Nor deal falsely in My faithfulness. My covenant I will not violate, Nor will I alter the utterance of My lips. Once I have sworn by My holiness; I will not lie to David. His descendants shall endure forever And his throne as the sun before Me.

Practical Applications Of God’s Faithfulness

God remaining faithful to Israel should give believers hope that He will also remain faithful to us.

God’s faithfulness is tied in with all of His attributes that attests to His being true, reliable and trustworthy.

J. God is Merciful

God is merciful, meaning that He feels pity for those in deep misery and distress.

The heart of God is moved with tender affection for those whose lives are ruined by sin. It is the quality of showing compassion. In mercy, God does not give us sinners what we deserve, but temporarily withholds the punishment. However, there will come a day when His mercy ends.

Insights Into God’s Mercy

God’s mercy is shown to those who are the least deserving of it. It is shown to those who are spiritually dead as a result of sin.

God is free to show mercy upon whomever He desires. Because His mercy is undeserved, no one can say that it is something owed to them.

Ex. 34:6 – Then the Lord passed by in front of him and proclaimed, The Lord, the Lord God, compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in lovingkindness and truth.

2 Sam. 24:14 – Then David said to Gad, I am in great distress. Let us now fall into the hand of the Lord for His mercies are great, but do not let me fall into the hand of man.

Matt. 9:27 – As Jesus went on from there, two blind men followed Him, crying out, have mercy on us, Son of David!

2 Cor. 1:3-4 – Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus the Messiah, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction so that we will be able to comfort those who are in any affliction with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.

Eph. 2:1-5 – And you were dead in your trespasses and sins, in which you formerly walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, of the spirit that is now working in the sons of disobedience. Among them we too all formerly lived in the lusts of our flesh, indulging the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, even as the rest. But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Messiah (by grace you have been saved).

Rom. 9:15-18 – For He says to Moses, I will have mercy on whom I have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion. So then it does not depend on the man who wills or the man who runs, but on God who has mercy. For the Scripture says to Pharaoh, For this very purpose I raised you up, to demonstrate My power in you, and that My name might be proclaimed throughout the whole earth. So then He has mercy on whom He desires, and He hardens whom He desires.

1 Pet. 1:3-4 – Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus the Messiah, who according to His great mercy has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus the Messiah from the dead, to obtain an inheritance which is imperishable and undefiled and will not fade away, reserved in heaven for you.

Difference Between Mercy and Grace

In mercy, God does not give us sinners what we deserve, but temporarily withholds the punishment. In grace, God gives us sinners what we do not deserve.

Distinctions Concerning God’s Mercy

In studying the mercy of God as it is set forth in Scripture, a threefold distinction needs to be made. First, there’s a general mercy of God, which is extended not only to all men, believers and unbelievers alike, but also to the entire creation: “His tender mercies are over all His works” – Ps. 145:9: “He gives to all life, and breath, and all things” – Acts 17:25.

Second, there is a special mercy of God, which is exercised toward the children of men, regardless of their sins. “For He makes His sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust” – Matt. 5:45.

Third, there is a sovereign mercy which is reserved for those God saves: “Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us” – Titus 3:5.

Practical Applications Of God’s Mercy

Even when we may be at our lowest, God’s mercy is there to see us through.

If you are saved, know that it was as a direct result of God’s mercy.

K. God is Gracious

This means that God delights to show unmerited favor to those who are completely undeserving of His goodness. Grace is not giving sinners what they do deserve, condemnation, God’s wrath and hell, but it is giving them what they do not deserve, salvation and heaven.

Insights Into God’s Grace

Grace is the only method by which God can save sinners.

Since true salvation is by God’s grace, there is no place at all for human works. All believers are saved by grace and we are commanded to grow in our understanding and application of God’s grace.

God promises that His grace will sustain believers through the most difficult of circumstances.

All salvation is accomplished by God’s sovereign grace

Rom. 3:24 – being justified as a gift by His grace through the redemption which is in Messiah Jesus.

Rom. 11:6 – But if it is by grace, it is no longer on the basis of works, otherwise grace is no longer grace.

Eph. 2:8-9 – For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast.

Eph. 1:7 – In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of His grace.

Titus 3:7 – so that being justified by His grace we would be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life.

2 Pet. 3:18 – but grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus the Messiah. To Him be the glory, both now and to the day of eternity. Amen.

2 Cor. 12:9 – And He has said to me, My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness. Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Messiah may dwell in me.

Practical Applications Of God’s Grace

Because of the principle of grace, especially in the area salvation, there is no room for boasting or taking credit for our salvation, or for that matter, anything that pertains to God’s work in and trough us.

Any attempt to add our works to what God has done nullifies His grace.

L. God is Righteous and Just

This means that God always acts in accordance with what is right and just and is Himself the final and authoritative standard for both.

Insights Into God’s Righteousness and Justice

Because God is righteous and just it is necessary for Him to treat people according to His standards. He doesn’t lower His standards to accommodate our sins.

Technically we as His creatures do not have the right to question God’s actions. To do so is to question whether God is right and just in His ways.

The only way for a sinful human being can be acceptable before God is for His righteousness to be imputed to the believing sinner. This takes place at salvation.

Ps. 11:7 – For the Lord is righteous, He loves righteousness; The upright will behold His face.

Ps. 89:14 – Righteousness and justice are the foundation of Your throne; Lovingkindness and truth go before You.

Deut. 32:4 – The Rock! His work is perfect, For all His ways are just; A God of faithfulness and without injustice, Righteous and upright is He.

Gen. 18:25 – Far be it from You to do such a thing, to slay the righteous with the wicked, so that the righteous and the wicked are treated alike. Far be it from You! Shall not the Judge of all the earth deal justly?

Rom. 3:21 – But now apart from the Law the righteousness of God has been manifested, being witnessed by the Law and the Prophets.

Rom. 3:25-26 – whom God displayed publicly as a propitiation in His blood through faith. This was to demonstrate His righteousness, because in the forbearance of God He passed over the sins previously committed; for the demonstration, I say, of His righteousness at the present time, so that He would be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus.

Rom. 9:20-21 – On the contrary, who are you, O man, who answers back to God? The thing molded will not say to the molder, Why did you make me like this, will it? Or does not the potter have a right over the clay, to make from the same lump one vessel for honorable use and another for common use?

Rev. 16:4-7 – Then the third angel poured out his bowl into the rivers and the springs of waters; and they became blood. And I heard the angel of the waters saying, Righteous are You, who are and who were, O Holy One, because You judged these things; for they poured out the blood of saints and prophets, and You have given them blood to drink. They deserve it. And I heard the altar saying, Yes, O Lord God, the Almighty, true and righteous are Your judgments.

1 John 1:9 – If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

Practical Applications Of God’s Righteousness and Justice

If we recognize that God is righteous and just in His dealings with us, it will help us accept what comes our way.

Realize that what people seem to be getting away with in this life, will one day be accounted for when God pours out His wrath.

M. God is Good

This means that God is good and kind toward His creation, showing benevolence and kindness to all. He gives blessings and common grace to everyone. Common grace is not saving grace, but speaks of His general goodness by providing such things as rain, sunshine and crops.

Insights Into God’s Goodness

God’s goodness is simply a reflection of who He is. God is good because that’s all that He can ever be. He can be nothing less that good.

Because there is no evil or sin in God, even His judgment, wrath and punishment are good from His perspective. They accomplish His purpose and bring glory to Him.

Ps. 33:5 – He loves righteousness and justice; The earth is full of the lovingkindness of the Lord.

Ps. 103:2-5 – Bless the Lord, O my soul, And forget none of His benefits; Who pardons all your iniquities, Who heals all your diseases; Who redeems your life from the pit, Who crowns you with lovingkindness and compassion; Who satisfies your years with good things, So that your youth is renewed like the eagle.

Ps. 145:9, 15-16 – The Lord is good to all, And His mercies are over all His works. The eyes of all look to You, And You give them their food in due time. You open Your hand And satisfy the desire of every living thing.

Nah. 1:7 – The Lord is good, A stronghold in the day of trouble, And He knows those who take refuge in Him.

James 1:17 – Every good thing given and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow.

Matt. 5:45 – …for He causes His sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous.

Rom. 2:4 – Or do you think lightly of the riches of His kindness and tolerance and patience, not knowing that the kindness of God leads you to repentance?

For those who have experienced saving grace in addition to common grace, meaning that they are a true believer, there is a special relationship to the goodness of God. What God says in Romans 8:28 is only true for one who is saved. The truths contained in this verse do not apply to one who isn’t a believer.

Rom. 8:28 – And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.

Practical Applications Of God’s Goodness

When we remember our sin and disobedience, we will be much more thankful for all the good that God showers upon us.

Believers need to keep in mind that every single thing that comes their way can work for ultimate good.

This barely scratches the surface of God and all that He has revealed of Himself. I firmly believe that one of the glorious things true believers will be doing in heaven will be learning more of God’s greatness.