Divine Essence by R.B. Thieme, Jr.

Apr 4th, 2013 | By admin | Category: Religion

The Characteristics of

Divine Essence

Divine Essence in the

Persons of the Godhead

All the attributes of divine essence are ascribed to each Person of the Godhead (Deut. 6:4; Mark 12:29).

Omnipresence.  The Father: “…the heaven and heaven of heavens cannot contain him…” (2 Chron. 2:6). The Son: Jesus said, “…lo, I am with you alway…” (Matt. 28:20; cf. Eph. 1:23). The Holy Spirit: “Whiter shall I go from thy spirit? or whither shall I flee form thy presence?” (Psa. 139:7).

Omnipotence. Of the Father’s omnipotence, Christ said “Abba, Father, all things are possible unto thee..” (Mark 14:36; cf. 1 Pet. 1:5). Jesus Christ is said to uphold “all things by the word of his power” ( Heb. 1:3; cf. Matt. 24:30; 2 Cor. 12:9; Phil. 3:21; Rev. 1:8b; 19:6). Jesus Christ demonstrated His power at one time when He spoke a word and 185,000 Assyrian infantrymen dropped dead (Isa. 37:36). He demonstrated the physical strength of His humanity when He bodily threw the money changers out of the Temple (Matt. 21:12). He will again slay the enemy with the word of His mouth at the Second Advent (Rev. 19:15, 21). By the power of His Word (Luke 4:32) He healed the sick, forgave sin (Luke 5:24), raised the dead (Luke 7:22) and imparted eternal life (John 10:28). Of the Holy Spirit’s power we read, “Through mighty signs and wonders, by the power of the Spirit of God…” (Rom. 15:19).

Immutability. The Father: “…the immutability of his counsel” (Heb. 6:17) “standeth forever” (Psa. 33:11). The Son: “Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and forever” (Heb. 13:8). The Holy Spirit: faithful to indwell the believer forever (John 14:16).

Veracity. At the Feast of Tabernacles, Jesus answered the unbelieving Jews, “…I am not come of myself, but he [the Father] that sent me is true…” (John 7:28). Later, He prayed, “…that they might know thee the only true God…” (John 17:3). Of the Son, John said, “And we know that the Son of God is come, and hath given us an understanding, that we may know him that is true, and we are in him that is true, even in his Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God and eternal life” who said, “…it is the Spirit that beareth witness, because the Spirit is truth” (1 John 5:6; cf. John 14:17; 15:26; 16:13).

The Manifestation of Divine Essence

All of the characteristics of God are not manifested at one time. This should not be difficult for you men to understand who have ever courted a young lady. Obviously, she puts her best foot forward, and you see only that portion of her essence she wants you to see. Suppose she has a grouchy disposition in the morning. She will not let you see that! By the time you see her in the evening, she is manifesting all sweetness! this simply illustrates the principle, God, of course, has only perfect characteristics.

Varied situations in life bring out certain of His characteristics. For example, God’s essence is manifested in salvation through His justice and eternal life. In judgment, we see God’s righteousness and justice, which make up His holiness. In God’s faithfulness, His immutability and veracity are revealed. In God’s Plan, divine omniscience and sovereignty are preeminent. In God’s will, His sovereignty is specifically seen. And in His revelation, His veracity, love and omniscience are foremost.

The essence of light illustrates this principle. All colors are present in a white ray of light, but they become visible only under certain conditions of refraction and reflection. When you see the color blue, the other colors in the light spectrum are absorbed while blue is reflected; but they are all still there. Just so, God always maintains His entire essence, no matter what you may see under various circumstances.

The Plurality of God

God exists in three separate and distinct personalities. Each Person is self-conscious and self-directing, yet He never acts independent of or in opposition to the others. The First Person is called the FATHER, the Second Person is called the SON, and the Third Person is called the HOLY SPIRIT. This does not indicate inferiority or subordination. They’re  coequal and coeternal. Subordination comes into the Plan of God only as it relates to man. The Son became obedient to the Father’s Plan by going to the Cross; the Holy Spirit became obedient to the Father’s Plan by indwelling all believers in the church Age.