31 Question 3

Of course we know the Lord knows what we are doing and what our thoughts as we see in Isaiah 66:18, “For I know their works and their thoughts: it shall come, that I will gather all nations and tongues; and they shall come, and see my glory.”  David invited the Lord to know his thoughts in Psalms 139:23 which says, “Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts.”  The Lord is omniscient, which means that He knows everything.  1 John 3:20 says, “For if our heart condemn us, God is greater than our heart, and knoweth all things.”

The Lord is also omnipresent, which means He is at all places at all times.  Let’s read Psalms 139:7-10 which says, “Whither shall I go from thy spirit? or whither shall I flee from thy presence? 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.”  The Lord Jesus spoke of His omnipresence in John 3:13 when He said, “And no man hath ascended up to heaven, but he that came down from heaven, even the Son of man which is in heaven.”  Of course, He was on the earth when He said that.

The Lord is also all powerful, which means He can do anything that He wants to do.  Psalms 115:3 says, “But our God is in the heavens: he hath done whatsoever he hath pleased.”  Because of who He is, there are a few things that the Lord cannot do, but these are the things that are not in His nature to do.  Can you think of anything that God cannot do?  For example, we know that God cannot lie.  We are told that in Titus 1:2 which says, “In hope of eternal life, which God, that cannot lie, promised before the world began.”

We sometimes attribute the characteristics of the Lord to Satan.  Since the Lord is omnipresent, omniscient and all powerful, does that mean that Satan is, too?  There is absolutely no scriptural evidence that any angel shares these characteristics with the Lord, not even Satan.  Satan can only be one place at one time.  Of course there are demons that are everywhere, but they too are limited to being in one place at one time.  Certainly Satan does not know everything.  He had no idea what the crucifixion of the Lord Jesus Christ would accomplish.  We read in 1 Corinthians 2:8, “Which none of the princes of this world knew: for had they known it, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory.” The princes of this world are demons for Satan is called the “god of this world” in 2 Corinthians 4:4.

Satan is not all powerful.  He is limited to what the Lord will allow him to do.  When the Lord allowed Satan to test Job, He gave him limits.  Job 1:12 says, “And the LORD said unto Satan, Behold, all that he hath is in thy power; only upon himself put not forth thine hand. So Satan went forth from the presence of the LORD.”  We also read in 1 John 4:4, “Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.”  The one who is in all believers is the Holy Spirit; the one who is in the word is Satan.  The Holy Spirit is greater than Satan, so we easily see that Satan is not all powerful.

I’ve heard expressions that show that sometimes people think that Satan is much more powerful that he is.  Some have said, “Every time I want to serve the Lord, Satan is there to hinder me.”  I’ve heard some say that we should not pray out loud because Satan will hear it and will learn our needs and weaknesses.  Let’s be intelligent about this and rely on what the Word of God says to us about Satan.  He is powerful.  He does have demons to help him in his ungodly causes.  He is ruthless and uncaring, but Satan is not God.  Where God is unlimited in his knowledge, presence and power, Satan is not.  (31.3)