Earlier this week, I wrote about how some skeptics try to put God into a box and about how even some professing Christians put God into another type of box. In each case, they are trying to put God into a box of their own choosing. When they do that, they create a god in their own image.
But, what about God? Does God put Himself into a box? I’d say He does.
Skeptics like to conjure up the irrational question, “Can God create a boulder so heavy that He cannot lift it?” This, of course, is a silly argument designed to show that God is not omnipotent. Supposedly, if God cannot create a rock that heavy, then He cannot be omnipotent. Then, if God does create a rock that heavy, then He cannot do something, which makes Him less than omnipotent. Omnipotence doesn’t allow for failure. Therefore, even though He can create a very large boulder, if He sets out to lift it, He must always be able to lift it (the power in “all powerful”).
It’s as ridiculous as asking God to create a round triangle. And, it points to some things that God cannot do. Why can’t He do them? He does not want to! It is not part of His character. Consider:
1. God is not the author of confusion (1Co 14:33). The act of creating a boulder too large for Him to lift would be chaos. In the same vein, He will not create a round triangle. It would be illogical. Don’t forget that “logos” and “logic” have the same root words.
2. God cannot lie (Heb 6:18).
3. God cannot sin. Numerous Scriptures show God is holy. He would not be holy if He were to sin. All good comes from God (Jas 1:17). There is no shadow of turning with God (ibid). God cannot sin because He defines sin. His character is righteous (Mt 6:33). Righteousness is ingrained within Him.
4. God cannot go against His character (Mal 3:6).
Can God be omnipotent yet have limits? Yes. “All powerful” simply means He will accomplish His will. It does not mean “without limits”. In fact, it is the act of setting limits that ensures His will is accomplished.
He limits Himself. How often have I mentioned that God is looking for people who will exercise self-control? Self-control means placing limits upon thoughts and behavior. It still takes the person exercising the gift of the Holy Spirit to bring about true self-control. We are learning now to control ourselves within His guidelines so that we can control ourselves within His guidelines when we are given much greater power. We are learning to become like Him!
The problem is when we try to make the box and fit God into it rather than allowing God to place us into His box!