God has limitless power over all He has made—which is everything outside of Himself. We see God’s omnipotence displayed in creation, in the lives of believers, and in His plan of salvation through Jesus’ incarnation, death, and resurrection. There is nothing that God cannot do and nothing happens outside of His control!
While people and creation have limits and can be measured, the Creator God does not. In this post on the attributes of God, we’ll cover God’s omnipotence: what it is, where we see it in The Bible, and what it means for Christians today.
What is Omnipotence?
In Latin, “Omni” means total, and “Potent” means power. Omnipotence is the characteristic of God that describes His unlimited, supreme, and eternal power over all things. Not only is He above all things, He is the creator and sustainer of all things. All things have their origin in Him and hold together in Him.
God’s Omnipotence on Display in The Bible
God desires for people to acknowledge Him for who He is. In The Bible, God’s power is on display in many different ways.
Omnipotence Over Creation
The Bible begins with a declaration of the power of God in the account of creation (Gen 1). God spoke and it was. Through the Word (Jesus), the world was created—light, land, sea, animals, plants, stars, and people—God made them all!
John 1:3 (ESV): All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made.
But God didn’t just make the world and walk away. He continued and continues to use creation to display His unlimited power. We see it through the birds of the air, beaches, mountain ranges, and groves. We are limited by the boundaries of the created world but God is not like us. He is not limited. He is omnipotent over all He has made.
The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaims his handiwork. Day to day pours out speech, and night to night reveals knowledge.Psalm 19:1-2 (ESV)
God displayed his power over creation through the 10 plagues in Egypt (Ex 7-12) and the parting of the Red Sea (Ex 14:21). In the desert, He miraculously supplied water from a rock (Ex 17:6) and bread from heaven (Ex 16). Later, He made the sun stand still (Josh 10:12) and even a donkey speak (Num 22:28) to name just a few of His miracles in the Old Testament!
In the New Testament, Jesus, God in the flesh, demonstrated His power over the created world through His many miracles. He turned water into wine (John 2:1-11), He calmed a raging storm with just a word (Luke 8:24), He walked on water (Matt 14:25), and multiplied a few loaves and fishes to feed thousands (Matt 14:19).
Omnipotence Over People
God is omnipotent over all creation—including man. He works in the lives of His children to bring about His plans and purposes. Because He is also unlimited in His love and goodness, we can trust Him. His plans and purposes are so much better than ours (although it isn’t always easy to see this!).
Proverbs 21:1 (ESV): The king’s heart is a stream of water in the hand of the Lord; he turns it wherever he will.
God is so powerful, He can even use sin and suffering to accomplish His good and perfect plan. We see this demonstrated in the life of Joseph who was sold into slavery by his jealous brothers. Ultimately, through God’s great wisdom, the nation of Israel was saved through this evil act!
Gen 50:20 (ESV): As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good, to bring it about that many people should be kept alive, as they are today.
And He’s not only powerful over people, but spirits as well. We see Him throw Satan from Heaven like lightning in Luke 10:18, and we see Paul declare Christ’s authority in Colossians 1.
Omnipotence Through Salvation
Because God is all-powerful, He is victorious over sin and death. Christ demonstrated His power over death when He raised Jairus’ daughter (Mark 5:41-42) and Lazarus from the dead (John 11:44). But God’s power is able to overcome far more than just physical death—it overcomes sin and spiritual death too!
God’s omnipotence is seen in His precious gift of salvation. Through Jesus’ sinless life God demonstrated His holiness and power over temptation. And through Christ’s sacrificial death and resurrection (the gospel), God demonstrated His power over sin and spiritual death!
Romans 1:16 (ESV): For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek.
What Does God’s Omnipotence Mean for Us?
When we are overwhelmed by our own limits, we can rest in the unlimited God who promises to meet our needs, strengthen us with His power (Is 40:29), and complete the work He has started in us (Phil 1:6). There is nothing He cannot do (Jer 32:17)!
When our carefully crafted plans fall apart, we can trust the one whose plan is perfect (Prov 16:9) and we can know that there is purpose in the pain (Rom 5:3).
Beloved, do you know this omnipotent God? Creation is declaring His power and majesty, you cannot claim ignorance. There is none like Him.
Romans 1:20 (ESV) For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse.