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  • Writer's pictureRick LoPresti

How big is God?

The average distance from the earth to the moon is about 240,000 miles. That is about 10 times the circumference of the earth. The astronauts that have made that journey traveled at the speed of a bullet for 4 days. Yet that is a relatively short distance. The sun is 93 million miles from earth. Yet that is also relatively small. The sun is a star. The next closest star to earth is Alpha Centauri which is a cluster of 3 stars. It is over 4 light years away. A light year is not a measurement of time but of distance. It is the distance light travels in one year. Light travels at about 186,000 miles per second. That means you would have to travel 186,000 miles per second just to reach the nearest star to the earth. Yet that is relatively short. Astronomers estimate that that our galaxy, the Milky Way, contains 100 billion stars and is 100,000 light years across. Those are conservative estimates. Yet that is relatively short. Astronomers also estimate that there are 100 billion galaxies in the universe. The vastness of that space is completely unimaginable or comprehensible. Yet, astronomers also say that the space of the universe is expanding (Is 40:22, Is 44:24, Zech 12:1), so it is even more beyond our ability to wrap our feeble minds around. The only One who can comprehend that is the One who created it all. Even then, when we read the account of creation in Genesis 1, the creation of everything beyond our solar system is described in the King James Version with just five words: "He made the stars also". In the original Hebrew, the phrase "He made the stars" is only one word. The focus of the creation account is the earth.

Since God created all of that and the space it is in out of nothing with just His word, how big is God? "Do not I fill heaven and earth? saith the LORD (Jer 23:24)." At the dedication of the temple, Solomon said, "But will God indeed dwell on the earth? behold, the heaven and heaven of heavens cannot contain thee; how much less this house that I have builded (1Ki 8:27)?" Later, God said of the temple, "Thus saith the LORD, The heaven is my throne, and the earth is my footstool: where is the house that ye build unto me? and where is the place of my rest (Is 66:1)?" David said, "If I ascend up into heaven, thou art there: if I make my bed in hell, behold, thou art there. If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea. Even there shall thy hand lead me, and thy right hand shall hold me (Ps 139:7-10)." God created space and everything in it, so the Creator is greater than His creation. We like to say that God is big, and He is bigger than our problems. Children sing the song, "My God is so big, so strong, and so mighty. There's nothing that He cannot do."

While it is true that God relates to us through our earthly experience and language so we can understand on some level, God does not have a size. He is beyond time and space which He created and is therefore limitless and infinite. He is a Spirit (Jn 4:24). He is not a person - not one, three, or any number. We are living in the days described by George Orwell in his novel "1984" wherein people are just changing the definitions of words to suit their political agendas. The word person in its basic definition is "the body of a human being". This has been the clear and consistent understanding of the meaning of the word for centuries. Older words from other languages also carry the same meaning. The Bible never uses the word person in that meaning to describe God. The King James Version translates a few Hebrew and Greek words as person, but when you look up the original words, they mean substance or presence (Job 13:8 - paniym, 2Cor 2:10 - prosopon, Heb 12:16 - hypostasis). The Bible never uses the word persons (plural) to describe God. We should not think of God as a person like us (Num 23:19, Job 9:32). He is not comparable to any other being (Ex 8:10, Ex 9:14, Deut 33:26, 2Sam 7:22, Ps 86:8, Is 40:18, Is 46:5 & 9, Jer 10:6-7). He created every other being.

So, what does all that mean to us practically? There is no angel, demon including the devil, man, or circumstance that is God's equal. None even comes close. We will all continue to exist for eternity going forward whether in heaven or the lake of fire (Rev 20), but only God has existed from eternity going backwards. If time travel were possible, we could not travel to before God no matter how far back we went. He is unlimited by space. He is infinite. He is also unlimited by time. He is eternal. He is also unlimited in power (Gen 17:1, Ex 6:3, Rev 1:8, Rev 4:8, Rev 19:6, etc.) and in knowledge (Job 21:22, Job 37:16, Ps 94:10, Ps 139, Prov 1:7, Rom 11:33, Col 2:3, 1Jn 3:20). So, what devil, person, or circumstance can we compare to God? There is none. God is also greater than our sin and consciousness of it (1Jn 3:19-21).

God chose to limit Himself in one sense when He manifested Himself in the flesh in the person of Jesus Christ (Jn 1:1-3 & 14, Jn 14:7-11, 2Cor 5:19, Col 2:8-12, 1Tim 3:16). Jesus was limited in His humanity in space and time, but still unlimited in His divinity. Jesus is the infinite, eternal God manifested in space and time. His purpose in coming in the flesh was to save us from our sins through His death (Mt 1:21, Rom 5, 1Cor 15, etc.). So, even sin and the death it brought is subjected to Him. However, God gave us the power to make moral choices, and He will not override that (Gen 2-3, Deut 30:11-20, Josh 24:15, etc.). The salvation of Jesus Christ will help us overcome our past sins, maintain victory throughout our life in this world, and take us into eternal life with Him if we choose to follow Him. There are over 100 scriptures in the New Testament alone that use to word "if" to show us that our salvation is not unconditional. The only thing that can separate us from Him is our choice to sin (Is 59:1-2, Rom 8:28-39). No one or thing is greater than Him. When we are discouraged by focusing too much on our earthly circumstances, we can remember the infinite, eternal, all powerful, all knowing God is able to help us. Let us lift our focus from our struggles to the God who is above them all, and follow His will through them and out of them.

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