Continuing with my April AtoZ (4 months later, but however) today’s word is ‘Omni’
The Oxford English Dictionary says that ‘omni’ means ‘of all things, in all ways or places.’ The all concept is attributed to God in a number of ways. It’s most often seen in these three characteristics: Omnipotent – all powerful, Omnipresent – ever everywhere, and Omniscient – all knowing.
We see them attributed to God throughout Scripture – but I always remember the first time I realised that these three ‘omnis’ are packaged nice and neat together in one Psalm. It became my favourite Psalm that day. (Although, I have few favourites 🙂 )
Psalm 139:1-6… YOU KNOW EVERYTHING, and that sort of knowledge is absolutely out of my league
Psalm 139:6-12… YOU ARE EVERYWHERE, I cannot get away from you, no matter how hard I try
Psalm 139:13-18… YOU SEE EVERYTHING, from the moment I was made, every day since and all the days to come
The psalmist doesn’t stop there. He can’t get his head around the fact that there are people who still hate God – especially in the light of these amazing attributes. Describing God’s character in this way leads to a sudden outburst of defence of God, and frustration that He won’t just wipe away anyone who doesn’t worship Him. But then, the writer immediately moves to contrition.
Why the sudden jump? I reckon it’s cos you can’t (or your shouldn’t be able to) understand God’s fabulousness and at the same time let your heart be filled with hatred. As well as raising indignation in the writer, an understanding these ‘super-God’ qualities gives him an understanding of his own imperfection.
It’s a challenge isn’t it?! Other people’s non-interest or abject hatred of God can raise our heckles, but our knowledge of who He is should keep us in check. After the psalmist’s outburst about the sins of God’s enemies, he looks upon his own imperfect heart and asks God to cleanse him.
Search me, God, and know my heart;
test me and know my anxious thoughts.
See if there is any offensive way in me,
and lead me in the way everlasting.