Restoration City Church
Devotional Week 3 | Our God is Omnipotent
Updated: Jan 24, 2020
Who Is This God?
The Attributes of God
Our God is Omnipotent, Day 1
“The Lord, strong and mighty, the Lord, mighty in battle!” (Psalm 24:8)
“Our God is in the heavens; he does all that he pleases.” (Psalm 115:3)
“With God, all things are possible.” (Matthew 19:26)
Mankind is obsessed with power. Superman is the ultimately powerful hero. Baseball teams spend millions to sign “power-hitters.” Money is power. Knowledge is power. The pen is mightier than the sword. America is (still) a world super power. The one toy I wanted in childhood (and never got...those of you who know my mom, don’t judge her) was the pow-pow Powerwheels! Pow-pow Powerwheels. Power makes ‘em go! (just look that up on Youtube).
Not only are we obsessed with power, we love it. We admire it. If I can’t be a powerful person, I’ll find someone who is that I like and agree with--I’ll choose that team, that president, that powerful person and enjoy their power, feeling, as a fan, like I share in their power. That’s why we spend tons of money on sports jersey’s with some other guy’s name on it. That’s why we refer to our sports teams in terms of “we” and “us,” even though few of us have ever stepped on the field.
For Christians, we get to enjoy the truth that our God is omnipotent, which means “all powerful.” Theologian Wayne Grudem defines God’s omnipotence as “God’s ability to do all of his holy will.” In week one of this study, we meditated on God’s sovereignty, which is directly tied to God’s omnipotence. God is sovereign, which means there are no external constraints upon his will and purposes. Because God is omnipotent, there are no external constraints upon his ability to do what he wants.
Greater than the power of the countless atomic explosions of the greatest stars in the universe. Greater than the power of the most terrifying tsunami wave or volcanic eruption. Greater than the power of all of mankind’s military might. Greater than the strength of Arnold Schwarzenegger’s biceps or Chuck Norris’ round-house kicks.
There is no man, no government, no material nor energy, and no spiritual person or force that can overcome or even stand in the presence of God’s power.
1. Choose (at least!) one of the verses at the beginning of this devotional and meditate on it. That means think about it. Memorize it. Pray and ask God to help you think thoughts and feel feelings about his power that you might not have yet.
2. Listen to All Sons and Daughters’ Great Are You Lord. Worship God as you become wrapped up in and enamored by the omnipotence of the God we get to call ours.
3. Pray, asking the Lord to show his power over your life and over the lives of lost people around you.
Who Is This God?
The Attributes of God
Our God is Omnipotent, Day 2
“The Lord of hosts has sworn:
‘As I have planned,
so shall it be,
and as I have purposed,
so shall it stand,
that I will break the Assyrian in my land,
and on my mountains trample him underfoot;
and his yoke shall depart from them,
and his burden from their shoulder.’
This is the purpose that is purposed
concerning the whole earth,
and this is the hand that is stretched out
over all the nations.
For the Lord of hosts has purposed,
and who will annul it?
His hand is stretched out,
and who will turn it back?
I took great pains to teach on God’s sovereignty in Week One of this study. Now, in week Three, I want you to find all sorts of pleasure and encouragement that this sovereign God is omnipotent. The teaching I have to share today is brief because I want you to spend more time reading the above passage from Isaiah.
The prophet Isaiah, speaking God’s words and on behalf of God, promises that all of God’s plans will be brought about. All that he intends to do will be done. His enemies will be defeated, as will his people’s enemies. The whole earth--that is, all of Creation--is under the reach of his will. No one can annul (that is, cancel) God’s purposes. No one can turn back his hand as he does what he pleases.
None of these promises are worth anything--anything at all--if God isn’t omnipotent. All of the promises of the prophets and all of the wonderful, soul-surging promises of Romans 8 are not worth anything...if God isn’t powerful enough to bring them about. It doesn’t matter at all if I tell you that your mortgage or student loans are forgiven--I don’t have that authority or power. But if the bank (or Bill Gates!) calls you and says so, that means something!
1. Read and meditate on the above passage from Isaiah. Remind yourself that the Christian God has sovereignly promised salvation, spiritual protection, steadfast love, and resurrection into eternal life. Think about all the powers of this world that try to threaten and oppose God’s will. Now...pray with thankfulness and pray for faith to live as though your God is omnipotent.
2. What (seemingly) powerful things or people do you tend to place your faith in? These are what we call idols--false gods--that pretend to have the power to rescue us from depression, fear, poverty, sickness, and guilty souls. Name those things. Write them down. Powers that you count on in ways you should only count on God.
3. Who needs the power of God’s omnipotence employed for their good? Pray for them today.
Who Is This God?
The Attributes of God
Our God is Omnipotent, Day 3
“(The Apostle Paul prays)...having the eyes of your hearts enlightened, that you may know what is the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, 19 and what is the immeasurable greatness of his power toward us who believe, according to the working of his great might 20 that he worked in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly places, 21 far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and above every name that is named, not only in this age but also in the one to come. 22 And he put all things under his feet and gave him as head over all things to the church, 23 which is his body, the fullness of him who fills all in all.” (Ephesians 1:18-23)
I know what I tend to do when someone places a lengthy passage of scripture at the front of a Bible study--I’m tempted to skim it, or worse yet, skip it (because I’m a sinful pastor who’s already read that a million times and thinks he already knows it). Don’t be tempted to sin like me. Read this Ephesians passage slowly and carefully. Read it several times. Read it aloud. I’ll wait.
Good? You do it? No? It’s okay. I’ll still wait. Go ahead.
Alright. I want you to learn today that the omnipotence of God isn’t simply some information to know. It’s just theology you’re supposed to have. It’s truth that’s supposed to change you. Transform you. Let me give you a list of things (not an exhaustive list) that the omnipotence of God can and should do to (and for) Christians.
Amazes us: brings awe in a joyful way
Humbles us: makes it clear to us how lowly we are and how supremely above us he is
Warns us: steers us clear from sinful opposition and rebellion against him
Encourages us: because omnipotent God is good and for us, we can be brave
Empowers us: God’s power, in limited ways, is shared with us to accomplish his purposes
Causes us to worship: in amazement and gladness, we honor God and praise him
Stirs our faith: we can trust in God’s law, promises, and love because his power overcomes all opposition to his purposes
Gives us confidence: we can think and feel clearly and calmly because God has the power to do all he’s said he will do
Stirs up love and loving action: we’re impressed by his power and grateful that he exercises it to love us--and we erupt in love for him and others
These are effects of God’s power upon those who do not believe--they’re for God’s people, those who have been saved by his grace through faith in Jesus Christ!
1. Today, keep it super simple. Re-read the Ephesians passage above. Review the bulleted list I supplied above. Pray through and ask God to do these things to you by his power and because of his power.
2. Who will you share this changing ability of God’s good power? Who will you text, call, or meet with and share your enjoyment and hope in all-powerful God?
Who Is This God?
The Attributes of God
Our God is Omnipotent, Day 4
“But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.'’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.” (2 Corinthians 12:9-10)
I don’t want to leave anyone thinking of God’s power and omnipotence in the same way we’d think of human power. Rather than thinking of God’s power in terms of biceps and bombs or lightning and thunder, I want you to think of ability. God has the ability to do all of his holy will. He can even work with omnipotence in weakness.
It’s true. Consider:
1 Corinthians 1:25 says that the weakness of God is stronger than men.
1 Corinthians 1:27 says that God chooses to use the weak and foolish things of this world to put to shame the powerful and wise.
In the book of Judges, God slashes the size of his own army from 22,000 men to just 300--and they weren’t really the best fighters among the bunch.
In Exodus, God calls on a stuttering eighty-year-old shepherd to deliver his commands to Pharaoh.
In Acts 2, Peter’s gospel message is around the astonishing truth that Jesus won his victory by dying at the hands of his enemies--like a lamb to the slaughter, quiet and meek.
God’s not only powerful in his power...he’s powerfully wise, powerfully creative, powerfully good, and powerful in his mysterious ways. We need to have our understanding of human power demolished and rebuilt in God’s understanding of power. Only this way can we weak and feeble humans--born, living, and dying in the span of (at best) eighty years or so, learn how to live with God’s power.
If God is the hero of our story, then we’re safe and free to be virtual nobodies. Being humbled, being no-big deal, even really screwing up and not amounting to much in this life isn’t the end of the world and it doesn’t mean God’s disappointed in you.If you trust that it’s God’s victory, God’s success, and God’s power that matters most, then you can work your hardest and do your best, knowing that the victory, success, and power aren’t your responsibility.
Indeed, the Apostle Paul tells us that he’s at his most powerful when he’s weak. When we think we’re hot stuff, when we think we’re super important or awesome, we get in the way of God’s superior power in us. By God’s grace, he helps us learn our weakness and trust in his strength.
1. In what ways have you been really trying to get by on your own power, believing that it all (whatever that all is) depends on you being stronger or better? How can you humble yourself and get out of the way to see God’s superior power at work?
2. Besides sinfulness, is there anything about you think makes God disappointed in you for? Not smart enough, strong enough, cool enough, attractive enough, successful enough? Pray and ask the Lord to show you his power and ask him to show you your part to play in his success.
3. What do you need to pray for that you know is beyond your power to accomplish? Pray really hard for that today, relying on the Lord to work all his holy will.
Who Is This God?
The Attributes of God
Our God is Omnipotent, Day 5
Today’s reading is Acts 9:1-22. There’s not enough space to print it here, so please take the time to read through it from your Bible or phone app. It’s okay if you need to break your reading up in parts.
Think of your nonChristian friends or family. No, really. Name them. Picture their faces. How have they responded to your attempts to witness to them about Jesus? If you haven’t yet, how do you think they’d respond if you tried to invite them to church or evangelize them?
Chances are, most of us have at least one or a few lost friends and family who’d respond with hostility. Many of our lost friends might just express apathy. Perhaps they might make fun of you. I’m sure you’re worried about being treated differently after trying to tell them about Jesus--I’ve totally worried about that before.
The most hostile or apathetic friends of ours need Jesus and it appears we don’t have the convincing words or arguments we need to get them to believe in him. You know why it appears that way? Because it’s true. And, honestly...that shouldn’t worry us one bit. Not if our God is sovereignly omnipotent!
When we first meet Saul of Tarsus in the book of Acts, he’s hostile toward Jesus and his disciples. So hostile, in fact, that, as a pharisee (elite religious teacher), it was his job to hunt down Christians, take their property, imprison them, and have them executed. Saul was there at the temple in Acts 7 when the deacon Stephen delivered one heck of a sermon--and it didn’t even phase Saul. He held everyone’s cloaks and smiled while they stoned poor Stephen to death. Not even the best sermon by the most convincing and gifted Christian speaker of the time could change Saul’s mind and heart ...that is, until he met the omnipotent Creator, face to face.
In Acts 9, you can read about how Saul was on his way to persecute some Christians when Jesus shows up and makes him a Christian. Go read it on your own and rejoice for your hostile or apathetic “unreachable” friends. Jesus is omnipotent and it was his will to change Saul’s heart and mind and make him a Christian...and so it happened. The man we now call the Apostle Paul, famous missionary, Bible writer, and church planter was beyond the reach of human will...but not beyond the reach of God.
God is omnipotent and powerful enough to save anyone he wills! He has power over life and death and he has power over condemnation and salvation. He overpowered your sin to bring you new life. He can do it for anyone!
1. Who are you hesitant to invite to church or share the gospel with? Are you concerned about their possible hostility or apathy or mockery? Confess your weakness to God, knowing that he understands and trusting that his power will show up in your weakness.
2. Before you say another word or send another text to your lost friends or family, pray for them now. By name, picturing their face--pray. Ask all-powerful God to do what only he can do: change the heart of a sinful person who rejects him.
3. Pray for courage and confidence in God today and, after praying for a lost person, reach out to them. Invite them to church or your community group. Invite them to a hang-out with your church brothers and sisters. Commit to action in obedience--if God is all powerful, who knows what he could, even with weak people like us?!