God: The Perpetually Perfect Fullness of Life

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Since the God who exists created the world (Gen. 1:1), sustains the world (Col. 1:17), and gives life to all things (Acts 17:28), we should expect God to either be infinite or exhausted by the work of creation and providence. Our God does not sleep or grow tired (Ps. 121:4). God must be perfect in his essence and being. So, “in speaking of God’s perfection here, we are not referring exclusively to his moral perfection (i.e., his goodness or holiness), but mean that God is the sum total of all his perfections, the One than whom no greater, higher, or better can exist either in thought or reality” (Bavinck, RD 2:249). God is “sum of all conceivable perfections, the highest perfection in person, infinitely far removed from all defects and limitations” (Bavinck, RD 2:250). 

Even with all his struggles, Job still praised God and trusted in his perfect goodness. God finally reminded Job that the divine nature is so great that he should be trusted even when we do not understand. The record of Job’s suffering highlighted God’s greatness. Job 11:7-9 says, “Can you find out the deep things of God? Can you find out the limit of the Almighty? It is higher than heaven—what can you do? Deeper than Sheol—what can you know? Its measure is longer than the earth and broader than the sea.”  

Although this concept of God has been held and cherished for 20 centuries, some modern scholars have seen fit to do away with the idea of God as the perfect Being. Sadly, much is lost when we give up on God as the perpetual fullness of being. First, the very foundation of creation–our existence–is lost. Without the foundation of the perfect unchanging God, we would be stuck in the quandary of having an infinite number of effects without a cause. Since the creation depends upon a first Cause, we must have the perpetually perfect God. Second, if God is not the perpetual perfect fullness of being, then we have lost the standard by which good and evil can be judged. We cannot speak of moral goodness or moral laxity. If there is not a perfect Being to ground moral judgements, there can be no standard. Third, if there is no perfect God, there must be an imperfect God. Think of the implications! A God with just one weakness is not the God described in Scripture and is certainly not the God in whom the creation might completely trust. 

Thankfully, the God of Scripture is perfect. “This God—his way is perfect; the word of the Lord proves true; he is a shield for all those who take refuge in him.” (Ps. 18:30). In Psalm 50:2, God was described as “the perfection of beauty.” God is perfect and the standard and guarantee for all (Matt. 5:48). “Because God is absolute perfection, the sum total of all virtues, the supreme being, the supreme good, the supreme truth (etc.); in other words, because God is absolute life, the fountainhead of all life, he is also the absolutely blessed God” (Bavinck, RD 2:251).

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