Sunday, December 17, 2006

Theology 101 - God's Attributes

In order to learn, understand, and embrace sound theology, I believe one of the most important places to start is with our understanding of God! Time and time again I have seen how a poor/weak understanding of the nature and character of God leads MANY people to some clearly unbiblical conclusions. So, today I have listed some of the more common *attributes divided into two categories, *incommunicable and *communicable.

In the weeks to come we'll look more closely at some of these attributes, but first let's lay a little foundation from which we will be able to begin building (or refining) our theology--our understanding of God as He has revealed Himself in Scripture.

Incommunicable Attributes
1. Independence or Self-Existence of God
2. Immutability (unchangeableness) of God
3. Infinity of God
4. Simplicity of God

Communicable Attributes
1. Knowledge of God
2. Wisdom of God
3. Goodness of God
4. Love of God
5. Holiness of God
6. Righteousness of God
7. Veracity of God
8. Sovereignty of God


Attributes: a property intrinsic to its subject and by which the subject is distinguished or indentified.

Incommunicable Attributes: belong to God alone.

Communicable Attributes: found in a limited and relative sense in man.

(My thanks to: Louis Berkhof, J.I. Packer, and Charles Ryrie (don't worry, I read Ryrie through my "reformed" glasses!!)


Kim said...

Hee Hee!!

I love your comment about reading Ryrie!

Excellent post; excellent resources, especially Berkhof.

Connie said...

Kim: glad you got a chuckle out of that--some folks might not! It's no secret among close family and friends that the Bible I carry is my 20+ yr. old Ryrie Study Bible. I've considered giving it up and getting a Geneva, MacArthur, etc. but I can't bring myself to part with all the personal notes and highlights I've made in my Ryrie over the years! It sort of documents my theological "journey" (won't Carla love that word!!) Plus, I'd have to "convert" to the updated NAS which I'm not too fond of--it's clearly a perference issue for me!

Kim said...

I have a Ryrie study bible that I purchased shortly after my salvation. I stopped using it just because I preferred the NASB. I don't prefer the NASB anymore. I use the ESV now. Either that or the NKJV. It took me a long time to part with my NASB because it had wide margins and I had a lot of notes in it, but I decided to make my notes in a separate note book to avoid having to purchase unnecessary amounts of bibles!

I'd like a parallel version of the KJV and the ESV, but I don't imagine anyone would see the need for that.

Rebekah said...

I have to admit, I got nervous when I saw the Ryrie resource listed, too, until you clarified! :-) I have a New Geneva Study Bible in NKJV that my dog kind of demolished the cover when he was a puppy years ago (he was feasting on the Word literally). He also chewed out Genesis 3, but I managed to tape it up, and then my husband got the cover rebound. But it's a hardback and really large, so it's hard to manage toting it with 3 kids and diaper bag in tow to church, so I also have a tiny little NKJV with no study notes that I carry to church. I've asked for a MacArthur study Bible for Christmas, and a box from Grace to You just arrived the other day, so you think I'm getting it? Thanks for what you are sharing here, I'm glad I ran across your site.

Connie said...


All sorts of puns came to mind when I read about your dog!!! Love that dog!!!

I do hope the package contains what you're hoping for! We bought one for our 16 y.o. daughter who has been asking for several years now--she's had a perfectly good standard NAS so we haven't been in a hurry. But since her desire has remained all this time, she has shown us that it really meant something to her to have a "study Bible" and not just a fad or novelty.

Let us know what is in the box when you find out!! :-)

Connie said...

BTW ladies,

I recently discoverd on the internet a Bible that has blank pages inserted and bound for note taking!!

There's even a site that tells you how to MAKE your own "notes included" Bible--I think it was modeled after a Bible Jonathan Edwards designed/used. Pretty neat idea--but I'm not sure I'd have the strength to tote it around!