Is G-d truly omnipotent?

God has chosen not to exercise his power over us, allowing us to choose for ourselves. He could force us to do anything he wanted.

Omnipotent means God can do all things (within the scope of logical possibility). It doesn’t mean he does do all things. For example, He didn’t give up his omnipotence when he told Noah he’d never flood the Earth again. He still has the power to do so. But he will not.

1 Like

People often confuse the term “Omnipotence” which comes from Philosophy, “Omni”=“All” and “Potence”=“The ability to bring to actuality” with the straight translation from latin “Omni”=“all” and “Potence”=“Power”

G-d created the Universe from nothing, it cannot be more “Omnipotent” than that.
Now we would like to ask.
Can G-d materialize a “Lamborghini Centenario Roadster” in front of my house? And the answer would be…If it was His will, Yes HE could.
That He has the power there is no doubt, weather He wishes to use to demonstrate or prove it to us that is a different matter.

1 Like

This is one of the propositions that are easy to refute. To achieve a linear motion for an entity which has a larger than zero stationary mass - you would need a force greater than infinity. That is a physical barrier, and it cannot be achieved.

And then you can admire the pictures mad by M. C. Escher, like “Relativity” or “Belvedere”, or “Waterfall”, etc. which describe impossible geometric forms. They look real, and they can even be built… in the sense that they look like exactly the pictures - from ONE vantage point, but they are impossible to create fully.

In other words, they are “cheatings”. :slight_smile: But an acorn, which will grow into a theologian is NOT an acorn any more - thereby violating the law of identity. And if the law of identity can be broken, then the law of contradiction is not inviolable - and thus you arrive at a world, where there is no “true” or “false”, where there is only “magic”. This is where the idea of “omnipotence” leads.

This makes some sense to me, as people certainly share a nature, a beautiful nature, and He had the choice to make it such that our wills drive us to survive and thrive. While we have our own choices, our own choices are made within the “confines” of our own nature.

This is a bit of a head-scratcher, please help clarify this for me. Our nature is already part of every circumstance, and our circumstances are in a big way created by fellow humans (as well as all matter and energy), so Aquinas’ conclusions appear to be applicable. In this sense, the “schools” are the same.

Am I missing something?

This is incorrect. Just purely in terms of logic, if God is both omniscient and omnipotent, it follows that His omnipotence also permeates all things. Each attribute assumes the others. They are simply different facets of the same All-ness.

Also, nothing created–nothing which is not God Himself–can be sustained by itself apart from God. Creation is in all ways sustained, rather, by His perpetual will, down to every first and last particle. It cannot be any other way. This is a necessary condition of existence within God’s All-ness.

That humans may sin, rebel against God, and commit acts of evil, does imply that God in any way suspends His omnipotence or His will. His desire is for us to do good, to will what He wills, and to glorify Him; yet part of His will is that we be allowed to choose. We can choose because He wills it, and so, as with existence, the ability to choose can thus only be sustained by His perpetual will.

Although understandable, it is a misunderstanding of terms on the part of meltzerboy2 to propose that God does not have direct control over the choices we make. It is not that God does not have direct control. That we have choice at all is because God wills it, so in this sense, God always has direct control. Rather, It is a necessary condition of providing us with choice that God not choose for us; not because he can’t, but because it is a logical impossibility for both to be given a choice and for God to choose for us.

God created us as subjects. Two subjects cannot simultaneously act for one or the other. As subjects, they are distinct identities. When one subject acts, it acts always as itself, not as the other, or else it ceases to be the subject that it is, which is an impossibility. Subjectivity is intransgressible. Thus if we are to be able to choose our path, God must not. Yet if God chooses our path, we would cease to be subjects and we would cease to have choice.

God can’t replace a lost limb. Well, He hasn’t been able to do so yet. I’m calling it.

I never said there is no analogy, and there is an essence as a point of reference. The error is when we import unnecessary “baggage” along with the analogy. There is in God something analogous to intelligence to us, power to us, goodness to us, and so on. But these are not attributes in God as they are to us. They are what he is. I had two long back to back posts above discussing this. If you cannot understand the concept of analogy of being, so be it. If you insist on the univocity of being, then God is entirely other and can only be known naturally (apart from divine revelation) by what he is not, or on the flip side you would have to instead adopt a Spinozan monism. Or equivocity of being I could say as little about you as I could of God. But I hold to the analogy of being, not univocity or equivocity.

In molinism the wills aren’t pre-moved. They’re “freer,” in a sense, in that respect. More independent respective to God. I don’t mean the results, but the predisposition.

He did not intervene on saving His Son from the Cross. And the Son, who is one with the Father did not intervene from saving Himself.

Yes. What are you attempting to demonstrate?

He cam suspend His power. You said[quote=“Mary888, post:89, topic:561713”]
follows that His omnipotence also permeates all things. Each attribute assumes the others.

This means He can’t suspend His omnipotence and is bound to rise against all inferior to Him by His own attributes. The example of Jesus Christ shows that His omnipotence is also expressed when He is not using His power.


This is not implying God suspends His omnipotence. This is not relative to ability, but to fundamental logic. Logically, one cannot both be omnipotent and suspend omnipotence. Omnipotence is once and always.

What you are doing is equivocating how you think God should act with whether it implies a suspension of omnipotence. God’s choice not to act is just as compatible with His all-permeating omnipotence as if He chose to act. Omnipotence and the permeation thereof do not necessitate a specific course of action. It simply means God can do all that He wills. It tells us nothing about what He should actually will.

Logically, we must take for granted that anything that what happens under the watch of an omnipotent Creator is thus willed by Him. Ergo, God chose not to intervene for Christ’s crucifixion, which is as much a use of His power as to actually intervene.

All things are sustained by God’s active will.

1 Like

Actually Bradskii, He can and He has:

Don’t confuse the infrequency of an act with the inability to act.

This is why I believe it’s better to view God’s omnipotence as the possession of all powers, and not the ability to do all things.

If we approach it in this way, logical contradictions are immediately ruled out, because bringing about (for lack of a better term) logical contradictions is not powerful at all. It’s defective. It’s easy to see how it doesn’t belong to omnipotence.

1 Like

But then. as Economist says and I always think, that would mean that God is bound by logic, so logic would be like a more trascendent entity than Him. The only solution, as I see it, is to say that logic is part of God’s nature; so, while he can violate the law of non-contradiction if he chooses, he won’t.

I would think that non-contradiction and identity are just intrinsic to the concept of being/reality. They are not above it.

1 Like

My thoughts exactly.

But why are they intrinsic even to God? Regardless, it is a similar conclusion to mine.

This topic was automatically closed 14 days after the last reply. New replies are no longer allowed.

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit