Catechism Lesson 2: On God and His Perfection

Attributes of God – The Characteristics

  • Wisdom

“Wisdom is the ability to devise perfect ends and to achieve these ends by the most perfect means.” In other words, God makes no mistakes.

 O the depth of the riches of the wisdom and of the knowledge of God! How incomprehensible are his judgments, and how unsearchable his ways! For who hath known the mind of the Lord? Or who hath been his counsellor? (Romans 11:33-34)

  • Infinitude

God knows no boundaries. He is without measure. This attribute by definition impacts all of the others. Since God is infinite, everything else about Him must also be infinite.

Is it then to be thought that God should indeed dwell upon earth? for if heaven, and the heavens of heavens cannot contain thee, how much less this house which I have built? (Third Book Of Kings / 1 Kings 8:27)

  • Sovereignty

This is the attribute by which He rules His entire creation. It is the application of His other attributes of being all-knowing and all-powerful. It makes Him absolutely free to do what He knows to be best. God is in control of everything that happens. Man still has a free will, and is responsible for his choices in life.

Whatsoever the Lord hath pleased he hath done, in heaven, in earth, in the sea, and in all the deeps. (Psalms 134:6)

  • Holiness

This is the attribute that sets God apart from all created beings. It refers to His majesty and His perfect moral purity. There is absolutely no sin or evil thought in God at all.

 Holy, holy, holy, the Lord God of hosts, all the earth is full of his glory. (Isaiah 6:3)

There is none holy as the Lord is: for there is no other beside thee, and there is none strong like our God. (I Kings 2:2) 

  • Trinity

Although, God reveals Himself in three persons, God is One and cannot be divided. All are involved completely whenever One of the Three is active.

Thus saith the Lord the king of Israel, and his redeemer the Lord of hosts: I am the first, and I am the last, and besides me there is no God. Who is like to me? (Isaias 44:6-7b)

Going therefore, teach ye all nations; baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. (Matthew 28:19) 

  • Omniscience

God possesses perfect knowledge and therefore has no need to learn. God has never learned and cannot learn.” Omniscience means all-knowing. God knows everything, and His knowledge is infinite. It is impossible to hide anything from God.

 Who telleth the number of the stars: and calleth them all by their names. Great is our Lord, and great is his power: and of his wisdom there is no number. (Psalms 146:4-5)

 God is greater than our heart, and knoweth all things. (I John 3:20b)

  • Faithfulness

Everything that God has promised will come to pass. His faithfulness guarantees this fact. He does not lie. What He has said in the Bible about Himself is true. Jesus even said that He is the Truth.

 And thou shalt know that the Lord thy God, he is a strong and faithful God. (Deuteronomy 7:9a)

 But God is faithful, who will strengthen and keep you from evil. (II Thessalonians 3:3)

  • Love

Love is such an important part of God’s character that the apostle John wrote, “God is love.” This means that God holds the well-being of others as His primary concern. For a full definition of love, read 1 Corinthians 13.

  • Omnipotence

Literally this word means all-powerful. Since God is infinite and since He possesses power, He possesses infinite power.

 With God all things are possible. (Matthew 19:26 b)

  • Self-existence

God has no beginning or end. He just exists. Nothing else in all the universe is self-caused. Only God. Scripture says, “In the beginning, God.” He was already there.

 God said to Moses: I AM WHO AM (Exodus 3:14)

“That is, I am being itself, eternal, self-existent, independent, infinite; without beginning, end, or change; and the source of all other beings.”-Douay Rheims commentary.

  • Self-sufficiency

He has no needs and there is no way He can improve. To God, nothing else is necessary. He does not need our help with anything, but because of His grace and love, He allows us to be a part of advancing His plan on earth and being a blessing to others.

 Father hath life in himself. (John 5:26)

  • Justice and Mercy

The Bible says that God is just yet he is also merciful. His character defines what being just and merciful really is. He does not conform to some outside criteria.

And he shall judge the world in equity, he shall judge the people in justice. And the Lord is become a refuge for the poor: a helper in due time in tribulation. (Psalms 9:9)

Example: Because of your sin you become separated from God and must die for that sin. That's Justice. Mercy is when God himself in Jesus Christ dies in your place on the cross. Justice has been satisfied and Mercy has reconciled you to God.

  • Immutability

This simply means that God never changes.

 For I am the Lord, and I change not. (Malachias 3:6a)

  • Eternal

In some ways, this fact about God is similar to His self-existence. God always has been and will forever be, because God dwells in eternity. Time is His creation. It is why God can see the end from the beginning, and why He is never surprised by anything. If He were not eternal, God’s offer of partaking in His eternal life for those who are in Christ Jesus would mean nothing.

  • Goodness

The goodness of God is that which disposes Him to be kind, cordial, benevolent, and full of good will toward men. This attribute of God is why He bestows all the blessing He does on His followers. God’s actions define what goodness is, and we can easily see it in the way Jesus related to the people around Him.

 Thou art good; and in thy goodness teach me thy justifications. (Psalms 118:67)

 And thou hast dealt with us, O Lord our God, according to all thy goodness, and according to all that great mercy of thine:(Baruch 2:27)

  • Gracious

Grace is the bestowal of that which we don't have but need to accomplish Gods will in our life. Its unearned an unmerited, yet He graciously gives all the graces we need to live for him.

 But to every one of us is given grace, according to the measure of the giving of Christ. (Ephesians 4:7)

 Let us go therefore with confidence to the throne of grace: that we may obtain mercy, and find grace in seasonable aid. (Hebrews 4:16)

  • Omnipresence

This theological term means “always present.” Since God is infinite, His being knows no boundaries. So, clearly He is everywhere. This truth is taught throughout scripture as the phrase “I am with you always” is repeated 22 times in both the Old and New Testaments

Catechism Lesson 2: On God and His Perfection
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