Here is where you are introduced to the strange concept of God’s self-sufficiency.
God lacks nothing. Craves nothing. He has everything he needs in himself.
In fact, to admit the existence of a need in God is to admit incompleteness in God.
Why God created anything is a mystery then.
We do know that the emphatic teaching of the Bible is that God exists for himself and man for the glory of God.
So, with that in mind, let’s explore 10 biblical illustrations of what it means when we say that God is self-sufficient. And then look at how we should respond.
1. God is life.
Self-sufficient, God requires nothing to give him life. He is the source of all life. Man, on the other hand, requires something else–something outside himself–to give him life.
2. God lives.
Contrasted against the dead, dumb idols he is the living God. The God of Abraham, Jacob and Isaiah. The God who speaks from fire. The God who doesn’t beg for anything. But commands everything.
3. God is lord.
The Hebrew word Lord used in Psalm 16:2 is adan…meaning master, ruler, owner, lord. Adan is thought to be the root of the noun adom, which is frequently used of men who own slaves. It’s were we get the word Adonia. It’s what believers mean when we prostrate ourselves before God in humble submission. We are slaves to the core.
4. God owns everything.
His possessions extend from the earth to the unknown regions of space. God sustains it like a man who sustains a small garden on the side of his house. He doesn’t need it to survive. He sustains it so he can enjoy it.
5. God provides everything.
God is our provider. What we have, we only have because God has opened up the way for us to get it. Our duty–especially in tithing–is to give back to the church. That is, God. The same is true for our lives.
6. God is jealous.
God is protective of his self-sufficiency. It’s what isolates him–and Him alone–from every other thing in the universe. Self-sufficiency is his air-tight silo. Except he can talk to us, comfort us, love us despite this barrier.
7. God is independent.
Man is dependent. God is necessary. Man is unnecessary. We get at the heart of God’s creation when we finally understand that God would still exist if all creation were dead. All animals. All birds. All plants. All men.
8. God gives life.
John uses the word “life” 36 times in his gospel–more than any other New Testament author. It refers not only to physical and temporal life that God gave to the world at creation, but especially to spiritual and eternal life imparted as a gift through belief in Him. Eternal life is at the beck-and-call of God.
9. God puts to death.
Self-sufficiency declares authority. Authority over birth, work, love and death. All things are slaves to him–the sea, the saint, the suicide. No once can escape Him or is out of His control. Including death.
10. God delivers.
The power of life is in God. As is the power of death. God cannot die, but he can kill. Furthermore, He is alive and without death and he is the one who can snatch people from the jaws of death. The Creator and the redeemer. That is the self-sufficient God we serve.
How Should You Respond to God’s Self-Sufficiency?
Get this: Gazing upon the face of God is a robust death sentence. Regardless, we are to pursue him. Any motion in His direction is upward for us. Away from him, a descent.
A. W. Tozer said about Christ, “The awful majesty of the Godhead was mercifully sheathed in the soft envelope of human nature to protect mankind.”
Self-sufficient God may be, but merciful, gracious and humble is he also, “who, although he existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being in the likeness of men. Being found in the appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even on a cross.”
How will you respond?
**Part of The Nature of God series.**