Ch. 17: The Contemplation of God-
w00t! Last chapter. Took a little longer than I expected, but it's been really good.
Well, the last chapter was essentially a reminder of all that's come before, it was a “let's step back and think about God for an instant.” It was also a call for humility. Even though we had just gone through all these different attributes of God, it was by no means exhaustive. Lots and lots of good quotes here.
From this most feeble and faulty contemplation of His attributes, it should be evident to us all that God is, first, an incomprehensible Being, and, lost in wonder at His infinite greatness, we are constrained to adopt the words of Zophar, "Canst thou by searching find out God? canst thou find out the Almighty unto perfection? It is high as heaven; what canst thou do? deeper than hell; what canst thou know? The measure thereof is longer than the earth, and broader than the sea." (Job 11:7-9). When we turn our thoughts to God’s eternity, His immateriality, His omnipresence, His almightiness, our minds are overwhelmed.So true! God is incomprehensible. Not that we can't know God at all, but we can't know Him completely. We've just skimmed the surface of the attributes of God, and even the smallest taste of them leave us bewildered in amazement.
C. H. Spurgeon -
The proper study of the Christian is the God-head. The highest science, the loftiest speculation, the mightiest philosophy, which can engage the attention of a child of God, is the name, the nature, the person, the doings, and the existence of the great God which he calls his Father. There is something exceedingly improving to the mind in a contemplation of the Divinity. It is a subject so vast, that all our thoughts are lost in its immensity; so deep, that our pride is drowned in its infinity. Other subjects we can comprehend and grapple with; in them we feel a kind of self-content, and go on our way with the thought, "Behold I am wise." But when we come to this master science, finding that our plumb-line cannot sound its depth, amid that our eagle eye cannot see its height, we turn away with the thought "I am but of yesterday and know nothing." (Sermon on Mal. 3:6).Would we be rightfully humbled before the Almighty!
He is an all-sufficient Being. He is all-sufficient in Himself and to Himself. As the First of beings, He could receive nothing from another, nor be limited by the power of another. Being infinite, He is possessed of all possible perfection. When the Triune God existed all alone, He was all to Himself. His understanding, His love, His energies, found an adequate object in Himself. Had He stood in need of anything external, He had not been independent, and therefore would not have been God. He created all things, and that "for Himself" (Col. 1:16)God is sufficient for Himself. Nothing we do adds to Him, even blogging, even talking with one another, we're not doing a work for God. Here was a mind blowing line:
He makes use of means and instruments to accomplish His ends, yet not from a deficiency of power, but often times to more strikingly display His power through the feebleness of the instruments.What a humbling picture of being used by God!
Remarking more on the sufficiency of God, Pink turns to remark on the sufficiency of God not only for Himself, but for us as well.
Yea, the Christian, when in his right mind, is able to say, "Although the fig tree shall not blossom, neither shall fruit be in the vines; the labour of the olive shall fail, and the fields shall yield no meat; the flock shall be cutoff from the fold, and there shall be no herd in the stalls: yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will joy in the God of my salvation" (Hab. 3:17,18).Once again, the prayers of the Bible humble me repeatedly. Am I satisfied in Him? Or only in what He gives to me in this world?
Finally, Pink closes with what seems customary, a reflection on God's supreme sovereignty.
A creature, considered as such, has no rights. He can demand nothing from his Maker; and in whatever manner he may be treated, has no title to complain. Yet, when thinking of the absolute dominion of God over all, we ought never to lose sight of His moral perfections. God is just and good, and ever does that which is right. Nevertheless, He exercises His sovereignty according to His own imperial and righteous pleasure. He assigns each creature his place as seemeth good in His own sight. He orders the varied circumstances of each according to His own counsels. He moulds each vessel according to His own uninfluenced determination. He has mercy on whom He will, and whom He will He hardens. Wherever we are, His eye is upon us. Whoever we are, our life and everything is held at His disposal. To the Christian, He is a tender Father; to the rebellious sinner He will yet be a consuming fire. "Now unto the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only wise God, be honour and glory for ever and ever. Amen" (1 Tim. 1:17).
Labels: Attributes of God