Friday, 21 October 2011


God thunders wondrously with his voice;
he does great things that we cannot comprehend.
Job 37:5
We often ascribe infinity to God. We describe His love as "infinite" love. We talk of His power as "infinite" power. But this is not quite the Biblical concept of God. In fact, neither the word nor the concept is used in the Bible to describe God. Rather, God is "Omni" ("all") - Omnipotent (All-Powerful); Omniscient (All-Knowing); and Omnipresent (Present everywhere). But compared to what we know and can do - God is Infinite!

F.W. Boreham loved the word "inifinite" to describe God. He linked it with another two unfathomable words- immensity and eternity. For F.W. Boreham this is what made God not only unique but utterly adorable. If I had my time over, FWB wrote, I would write and talk less about what God has done and concentrate almost entirely who God is. And these three inscrutable words summed up for the great Christian Essayist just why he felt this way. Yet, strictly speaking God is not "infinite". He is, rather, "all" (omni).

"Infinity" doesn't exist. It's a made up concept. That's one reason why it' wrong to describe God as infinite. Infinity is also impossible. By definition it can never be reached. God is not like this at all. He wants to be reached. Inifinity is never satisfied. God on the other hand is the very source of satisfaction. Infinity teases the learner by saying there's more to learn. God has nothing to learn because He is omniscient.

This God whom we worship is so far beyond anything we can think or even imagine that He seems to us to be infinite in every way. As we ponder this and marvel, there is possible only one other attribute of God that is even more amazing. God is not only infinitely great; not only eternal; not only immeasurably immense; He is imminent.
Rather than describing God with the awkward and uncomfortable word, infinite, we perhaps are more apt to describe God as "transcendent". This beautiful word pictures God as so far above us in every way. But there is an even more arcane word to describe God which makes the word transcendent stand to one side. It is the glorious word that should fill us to overflowing with hope every minute of the day: God is imminent!
How remarkable! How amazing! How aweful! Not only is God seemingly infinitely more knowledgeable than us, more powerful than us, more wise than us, more loving than us, more patient than us, more forgiving than us, more just than us, more compassionate than us - He is here! This is what imminent means. He is close. He is not merely "above" us, He is beside us.

The Prophet Isaiah stunned the world when He declared that God would one day reveal Himself not again as "El" (Almighty God) but asImmanuel (God is here 'immanu'=near, 'el'=Almighty God). Ponder the greatness of God and you'll probably resort to the technically incorrect word "infinite" to describe Him. Continue to ponder in awe and wonder as you (to steal a Star Trek phrase:) go to warp-speed in your admiration of God when you realise that He is imminent. Unlike the word infinite, imminent is an extremely accurate word to describe God. Right now as you read this, God is near you. You are just one breathed prayer away from the Omnipotent God we reasonably consider to be The Infinite One. He cares. He carries. He calls. He catches. Be struck by God's imminence and as you draw near to Him you almost certainly conclude that compared to our weak estate, God is relatively infinite.
Father, we join with the Psalmist and declare that You are far above us. You are all-together majestic. You are All-powerful. Truly as Jeremiah said- NOTHING IS TOO HARD FOR YOU! You are awesome. You are amazing. You are incomparably wise. I pray for those who are in a dark place at the moment, that they might experience Your imminence, in Jesus' Name, Amen.

Eph. 3:21 to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen.
Ps. Andrew

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