Is God’s Power Infinite?

Hello everyone, and welcome back once more to Deeper Waters, where we plunge into the ocean of truth! We’re going through the doctrine of God right now in Christian thought and the text that is our guide is the Summa Theologica of Thomas Aquinas, a work that can be read for free, which is always a great price, at Right now, we’re discussing God’s power and tonight, we’re going to ask if the power of God is infinite.

It had been said that everything that is infinite is imperfect. However, the power of God is not imperfect. If that is the case, then the power of God cannot be infinite because if it was, it would be imperfect. Therefore, the power of God must not be infinite.

While this is attributed in thought to Aristotle, the section being referred to is about an infinite body. This could be a problem for groups like the Mormons who have a deity that is necessarily bodily, but it is not a problem for orthodox Christians as we do not have a God who is material by nature. The reason that the infinite body would be a problem is that the infinity would refer to quantity and not quality. We do not mean when we say that God has infinite power that you keep building up more and more power and then you reach the point of infinite power. An infinite cannot be transversed. It means that God has all the ability of power and that he can do what power can do.

Isn’t a power known by its effect? After all, if a power is at work and the effect that fits that power does not come about, then that is power in vain and there is nothing in God that is in vain. However, if the cause of an effect was infinite, then the effect would need to be infinite, and this is impossible. Nothing can be infinite besides God.

However, this is the case of a univocal agent. God is not one of those as he does not belong to a genus or a species, as was shown when we went over divine simplicity. His effect will always be less than his power. However, this does not mean that his power is in vain. Power that is in vain is power that does not reach the end that it desires. God always gets the end that He desires for He is His own end.

Again, the reason why God’s power is infinite is the doctrine that Aquinas treats first, the simplicity of God. God does not have part of anything but He is what He has. He is His power. He has power to perfection and so because of that, we can know that the power of God is infinite.

What does this mean for us? If we know this, we ought to live like it is so. We can read about Moses asking God how it could be that He could provide meat for all the Israelites and reading the text it is so easy to say “Moses! He’s God! He can do it! Why do you doubt?”

Until we come up with something far smaller in our lives and doubt.

The God who acted for Moses acts for us today. Trust Him. His power is infinite.

We shall continue tomorrow.


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