In the last hundred years, human knowledge has exploded. Currently, it doubles every thirteen months, and it may soon double every twelve hours! We know more about the universe now than we ever have before, and a year from now we’ll know double that much!
Long gone are the days of having “Renaissance” men like Leonardo DaVinci who could master several disciplines—from art to anatomy. Today, it’s impossible for anyone to master even a single topic, let alone a single discipline.
For example, think of chemistry. Four hundred years ago, it might have been possible to know all that human beings discovered about chemistry. Today you don’t simply learn about chemistry. You learn about agrochemistry, astrochemistry, cluster chemistry, electrochemistry, geochemistry, nanochemistry, or nuclear chemistry. And each of those subdisciplines has its own unique problems you can spend your entire career researching.
There is too much to know about the world for any creature to grasp it all. But God is not a creature—He’s the Creator. God’s knowledge is not limited. He knows everything that can be known. That’s part of His divine nature. As the childless Hannah once prayed,
“the Lord is the God of knowledge” (1 Sam 2:3).
Having knowledge is part of what it means for God to be God.
The scope of God’s knowledge far exceeds our own. And that’s saying a great deal. Neuroscientist Jeff Lichtman once calculated the human brain can contain several billion petabytes of data storage. But as huge as that number is, ultimately, our knowledge is finite. By contrast, God’s understanding is infinite:
Great is our Lord, and mighty in power;
His understanding is infinite (Ps 147:5).
How can God know so much? In part, God’s infinite understanding of the universe is linked to His omnipresence in the universe. Since God is everywhere (since He is present to all of creation), He is aware of everything:
The eyes of the Lord are in every place,
Keeping watch on the evil and the good (Prov 15:3).
Consequently, since nothing is hidden from His sight, nothing is hidden from His knowledge:
And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are naked and open to the eyes of Him to whom we must give account (Heb 4:13).
Do you think you can hide from God—as Adam and Eve once tried to do? (Gen 3:8). Futility! You’re naked before God. He knows all.
Peter summed up this topic well:
“Lord, You know all things” (John 21:17).
In sum, God is a God of knowledge. And what do you call it when someone sees all, knows all, and whose understanding is infinite?
Theologians call that omniscience, which means “having knowledge of all things.”
That is one of the attributes of God: the Lord is omniscient.