We’re beginning a new series of posts on the attributes of God. The Apostle Paul said that the goal of his life was to know Jesus Christ and the power of His resurrection.
What is God really like?
To start us off, let’s look at a character quality that is completely unique to God.
“Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare to Him to whom we must give account.” Hebrews 4:13 NIV
The Bible says nothing in creation is hidden from God.
“Great is our Lord and mighty in power; his understanding has no limit.” Psalm 147:5 NIV
What these verses are talking about is what theologians call the omniscience of God. Omniscience means God is all-knowing, God knows everything. There is no question He cannot answer, no problem that confuses Him. He’s never surprised or shocked. God knows everything.
1. God knows all about Himself
You don’t know all about yourself. That’s why you have a lot of problems. We are constantly surprising ourselves with things we thought we could do that we can’t or things we thought we could not do that we can.
God never has these moments because God knows what He’s doing. We don’t always know what God is doing, but He does.
2. God knows all about creation
He knows about everything He has made.
“God saw all that he had made, and it was very good.” Genesis 1:31 NIV
There are two amazing statements here, God saw everything. Every rock, every tree, every blade of grass, every fish, bird, animal, star and grain of sand. He was totally aware of everything that He created and He said, “It is good.”
This is before the fall. When things were the way God created them, they were very good, because God is a very good God.
3. God knows all about history
He knows the past, present and future. He knows the scope of history from beginning to end.
Before we move on in this post, we need to ask you to do something first. We want you to worship first. What we have already read about God is amazing, and we should not move on from this too quickly.
Throughout the book of Psalms you see these interludes. Your Bible might say, “Selah.” It’s a pause moment, an interlude. A chance to take a breath.
Weigh the meaning of what you have just read about God. Rest in the fact that God is all-knowing. So take a moment, literally a few minutes, and sit with this. Here’s an instrumental playlist you can have playing while you sit in wonder and awe of a God who is completely and eternally omniscient.
As you do this, stuff is going to come to your mind. Don’t let those thoughts frustrate you, but use them as an opportunity to give what ever it is that comes to mind back to God. To say: “God knows and God is good. I submit that to you God.”
“Great is the Lord and most worthy of praise; his greatness no one can fathom.” Psalm 145:3 NIV
“Can you fathom the mysteries of God? Can you probe the limits of the Almighty? They are higher than the heavens above- what can you do? They are deeper than the depths below- what can you know? Their measure is longer than the earth and wider than the sea.” Job 11:7-9
What God Knows About Me (Psalm 139)
The Bible says in Psalm 139 that God knows everything about you. We say God knows everything, but we really don’t live like it.
Let’s look at five specific areas that God knows everything about in your life and the difference that it will make if you just remember that fact.
1. God knows all your faults and failures
This is the bad news. God knows everything about us. The fact is, sometimes we want to forget the omniscience of God because it’s a little uncomfortable. It is uncomfortable to realize we have no secrets from God. There are some things we’d rather God not know about us.
“O God, you know how foolish I am; my sins cannot be hidden from you.” Psalm 69:5 NLT
Foolishly, when we do something wrong, we try to hide our sins, put them in the closet and lock the door, but God knows what’s behind that locked door.
“For your ways are in full view of the Lord, and he examines all your paths.” Proverbs 5:21 NIV
The devil tempts us by saying, “No one will ever know.” So we go ahead and do it and then afterwards he hits us with another question, “What if they find out?”
You have already been found out. God knows and He’s the one who counts.
Fact: God is not shocked by your sin.
Your Response: Be honest and turn from your sin.
He’s already seen it. When we confess to Him the things we’ve done wrong, He’s not shocked. He understands our faults and our failures.
So be honest. The Bible says, “If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.”
Just admit it. You’re not fooling anyone. “God, You’re right. I was wrong.”
“Whoever conceals their sins does not prosper, but the one who confesses and renounces them finds mercy.” Proverbs 28:13 NIV
God knows everything about you. He already knows all you’ve done wrong and He still loves you. When you admit it to Him, it never changes the way He feels about you, because He already knows.
He loves you and He loves you unconditionally. That means you don’t have to fake it, you don’t have to pretend.
2. God knows all my feelings and frustrations
You may thing that no one knows what you’re going through, or that no one feels the pain you’re going through.
God knows. He knows your feelings and frustrations.
“…you have seen my troubles, and you care about the anguish of my soul.” Psalm 31:7 NLT
Often when we’re hurting we feel very isolated, very lonely. Maybe there’s been a death in the family, a divorce, a traumatic event. We feel alone thinking that no one understands they way we feel.
What does God think when He knows how you feel?
“As a father has compassion on his children, so the Lord has compassion on those who fear him; for he knows how we are formed, he remembers that we are dust.” Psalm 103:13-14 NIV
Fact: God is sympathetic to your hurts.
Your Response: Trust Him with your hurts.
Not only does He see, He cares. God understands why it happened. The Bible says He understands because He made us. He sees the hurt in your heart that nobody else may see.
Listen, God knows what He’s doing. We may have no earthly idea what he’s up to, but, whatever it is, it will be good and meaningful. There is a God and there is purpose for pain and hope for humanity.
Are you trusting God in the dark? Are you trusting God in the midst of your feelings and frustrations?
“Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.” 1 Peter 5:7 NIV
Cast them all permanently, once and for all, don’t take them back. Give Him your hurts just like you give Him your faults, every area of your life.
3. God knows all your future
“Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.” Psalm 139:16 NIV
Everybody is interested in the future. People try all kinds of things trying to figure out what’s going to happen next. Astrology, horoscopes, reading tea leaves, bio-rhythms.
Fact: God sees your tomorrow, today.
Your Response: Ask for his advice.
He already sees the things we’ll face. God is not limited by time. He’s not limited by sequence of events.
It’s like when they show a helicopter shot of the Macy’s thanksgiving day parade. You could see the beginning of the parade and the end of the parade all at the same time, without even stopping it.
God, from His perspective, can see it all at once. That gives us greater confidence in God, because He knows everything that is going to happen in your life, and He still created you.
He knew every horrible thing that would happen to me and every stupid thing you would do and He still thought it was worth it to create you. He doesn’t want anyone to suffer for nothing. What He has in store must be greater than we could have ever imagined.
The things you don’t know, God can tell you about. He’s not going to lay out your whole life all at once, telling you everything that will happen in your life. If He did you’d get very discouraged or full of pride or both. He will lay it out a little at a time.
Here’s a practical application: When go over your schedule with the Lord, say, “Heavenly Father, You’ve already seen this day that I’m about to experience. You know every interruption I’m going to face, every cranky person in the office, everything my teacher is going to throw at me. You’ve already seen it. Would You, right now, give me the strength to cope through this day, the strength that I need for today.”
He already knows and you can ask Him in advance for wisdom and strength, for what you will face that day.
4. God knows all my fears
Often, the things we get most uptight about are in the areas of finances, our needs.
“So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them.” Matthew 6:31-32 NIV
He knows everything you need. Worry is the result of not realizing the omniscience of God. When you think that God doesn’t know what’s going on in your life, that He’s unaware of it and He doesn’t care, then you start to believe you need to take matters in your own hands.
Worrying is us trying to play God. Worrying is taking responsibility for things God never intended you to have.
“…your Father knows what you need before you ask Him.” Matthew 6:8 NIV
Fact: God knows all your fears.
Your Response: You don’t worry.
Don’t worry, trust God. Don’t panic, pray and surrender it to God.
5. God knows all your faithfulness
Every time you do the right thing, God is watching. Every time you don’t give in to temptation, every time you exhibit the fruits of the spirit, God understands and He sees your faithfulness to Him.
Fact: Every good deed will be rewarded.
Your Response: Don’t be discouraged.
Every good deed will be rewarded no matter how insignificant, regardless of whether anybody else on earth saw it or not. Every encouragement you give to other people, every time you serve your husband or wife, every time you pick up around the office when it’s not your job, or set up chairs in church or stuff bulletins, He sees it.
Every act of courtesy, every time you had the opportunity to gossip and you didn’t, every time you had the opportunity to be critical and you weren’t, He sees every little thing and every big thing.
Every time you gave an offering sacrificially, served someone in a big way or went the extra mile, God sees it. He’s seen it all and He will reward you.
It really doesn’t matter how we appear in public. What matters is how we are in private. Character is who you are in the dark. Reputation is what other people say about you.
Character is who you really are. What matters is the integrity in your life when nobody is looking, because there is someone looking…God. That is a tremendous motivator to live a Christ-like life.
If God sees all the good things that you do and He’s out there cheering you on and you are going to get credit for them all then we shouldn’t be discouraged.
Every act of kindness, every act of love — God is recording it all. Nothing good that you do is ever done in vain.
“Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.” Galatians 6:9 NIV
Matthew 10 says even a cup of cold water given in the name of Jesus Christ, God is interested in it. Knowing these things and knowing that God knows everything in your life, can either be very disturbing or very comforting. It depends on your relationship to Him, whether your trying to fool Him or not.
Which of these five areas have you been acting as if God is totally unaware?
God knows all your faults and failures. Have you been acting as if, pretending, that God does not know the wrong things that you’re involved in? Maybe you thought you could get away with it or that no one will ever know. You may be fooling other people, but you’re not fooling God.
You need to admit it to yourself and to God — come clean — and ask God to forgive you. Remember that He already knows about it and He still loves you.
God knows all your feelings and frustrations. Maybe you’re hurting or feel misunderstood. Have you forgotten that God understands you, completely?
He sees the crisis in your soul, every time you cried yourself to sleep, He has seen it. He loves you and He’s very much aware of all that has happened in your life, that has brought you hurt. Look to Him for comfort and strength. Realize He understands you even better than you do.
God knows your future.
God knows your fears.
God knows all about your faithfulness. Are you discouraged trying to do what’s right? God knows and He will reward you. Nobody knows you like God does. He knows you better than you know yourself and at the same time, nobody loves you like God does.
Check back on your discussion from last week, “The Excellent King.” (Am I making wise choices? Am I managing what God has given me well? Am I treating people well? Am I worshipping sacrificially?) Any more observations or thoughts on that message or your discussion?
This week we began a new sermon series on the character of God. In this series we’ll look at what God knows about us, his omniscience; God’s power in our lives, his omnipotence; Where God is when we need him, his omnipresence; Our unchanging God, his immutability. From his love and grace to his sovereignty and faithfulness, let’s get to know God!
To start things off, we looked at what God knows. The Bible says nothing in creation is hidden from God. Hebrews 4:13 says “Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account.” What this verses is talking about is called the omniscience of God. That means God is all-knowing. God knows all about himself. God knows all about creation. God knows all about history.
“Can you fathom the mysteries of God? Can you probe the limits of the Almighty? They are higher than the heavens above—what can you do? They are deeper than the depths below—what can you know? Their measure is longer than the earth and wider than the sea.” Job 11:7-9 NIV
Read Psalm chapter 139 with your group.
Discussion & Application
1. Growing up, what was your family’s view of God? Was he ever discussed? How did you picture God? What influences were shaping the character of God for you?
2. Which of the five things God knows about you stood out the most?
3. Proverbs 5:21, “For your ways are in full view of the Lord and he examines all your paths.” Why do people feel they can hide their faults and failures from God? Have you ever concealed a sin from God? What were you hoping would happen?
4. Psalm 139:16, “Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.” Since God knows all my future, what might it look like to ask God for advice? How will he respond?
5. Galatians 6:9, “Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.” How could the fact that God knows our faithfulness impact our daily life?
Ask the group for how you can pray for and support one another this week.
Have you been honest with God and confessed your sin to him? Have you asked God to save you through Jesus Christ so you don’t have to face the punishment for sin? If you’ve never done that, let the group know so they can pray with you.
“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:16