Some notes as I work through J. L. Dagg’s Manual of Theology (1857) one chapter at a time.
Book 2, Chapter 2: Attributes of God (Part 5)
God knows all things.
In reflecting on God’s omniscience, Dagg focuses on both the MODE and the EXTENT of God’s knowledge.
“The mode of God’s knowledge we cannot comprehend.” His thoughts are not our thoughts. Unlike us who acquire knowledge, God does not. He “is not dependent for knowledge or information received from any of his creatures.”
“The extent of God’s knowledge is unlimited… He knows all things; all things possible, and all things actual… All events, past, present, or future, are known to God… Past events are said to be remembered by him; and he claims the foreknowledge of future events.”
Dagg then compares human knowledge with God’s infinite intelligence. “Human beings have two modes of knowing past events; one, by memory; the other, by inferring their existence from the effects which have followed.”
What effect should God’s omniscience have on us?
“An important part of its use consists in convincing us that we cannot find God, and that his thoughts are not as our thoughts.”
“We should fear and tremble before it. He sees the inmost recesses of the heart. The hateful thoughts which we are unwilling a fellow-worm should know, are all known to him, and every thought, word, and deed.”
(Photo: Ben White)