Month: December 2009

What is Impossible for God?

“With God all things are possible.”

For some Christians this truism is a mantra, spoken whenever obstacles or trials stand in their way. God will overcome! Seriously, is there really anything God can’t do? It seems like common sense, doesn’t it? God is capable of doing anything.

However, a young YouTube apologist called MigKillerTwo, in his second video on defending Substance Dualism, had something quite interesting to say on the subject. When confronting this question, his answer was both enlightening and honest. Before I get to his answer, however, there are a few scripture verses to consider.

When the disciples heard this, they were greatly astonished and asked, “Who then can be saved?” Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.” (Matt 19:25-26)

Even Elizabeth your relative is going to have a child in her old age, and she who was said to be barren is in her sixth month. For nothing is impossible with God. (Luke 1:36-37)

These verses are standard faire for a Christian layman. Imagine my surprise when this verse was brought into the conversation.

Because God wanted to make the unchanging nature of his purpose very clear to the heirs of what was promised, he confirmed it with an oath. God did this so that, by two unchangeable things in which it is impossible for God to lie, we who have fled to take hold of the hope offered to us may be greatly encouraged. (Heb 6:17-18)

Apparently, atleast in one area, something is impossible for God. God cannot lie. From here, ones mind begins to ponder: What else is it impossible for God? Why are they impossible? Does this mean there’s a contradiction in the Bible?

This is where MigKillerTwo stepped in and gave a well reasoned answer. First, he admitted that there are things God cannot do, like: lie, sin or die. However, in his reading of the scripture, that did not present a contradiction. The statement, “nothing is impossible” merely means: God cannot fail to accomplish all that He sets out to do. Nothing is withheld from Him (God is all powerful).

MigKillerTwo didn’t stop there. He also explained why certain things were impossible for God. These fall into two categories:

1) Behavior against His own nature.

2) Behavior that is impossible by definition (logical contradictions).

  • God can’t create a square circle.
  • God can’t make something exist and not exist at the same time in the same sense.

So when the classic question comes up: “Can God make a rock so big He can’t lift it?”, you can confidently say: Yes. The physical body of Jesus certainly had limitations on how much it could lift. So yes, it is possible. If they demand you give an answer for God the Father, you can safely ignore the question. It is logically inconsistent. God is Spirit and as such is not subject to the laws of gravity. When God did take on a body, He was Jesus. Therefore your original answer stands. This answer is not logically impossible nor against God’s nature.

As Christians must be clear with ourselves: God will accomplish everything He sets out to do. Nothing that is logically possible is beyond His grasp. However, God will not act against His loving nature (and aren’t we glad He doesn’t).

I hope that explains what I learned from MigKillerTwo’s video and I pray it gives you the same small amount of insight I received.

Future of Forestry Advent Christmas Show

Of course, the Institute is all about apologetics. We’re not into endorsing products, services or other non-apologetic events. That said, I do believe that a good Christmas celebration is always in order this time of year. I, in fact, attended one just the other night.

Traveling 3 hours to the Colossae church in Tigard, Oregon, I had the opportunity to see Future of Forestry perform their wonderful Christmas Advent concert. The instrumentation was absolutely amazing, the musicians professional (Ph.d candidates included) and the songs a wonderful mix of traditional chorals with tasteful and eclectic interstitials. Its a time to not only enjoy great music, but also to worship God with your whole family.

There are two more performances scheduled for the Seattle area this weekend. Times and Locations for the shows on the 12th and 13th are available on Seattle Christian Music. So please, gather up your friends and family, and spend some time in the presence of the Lord, worshiping along with Future of Forestry the birth of our Savior.

Maybe you’re not on the west coast of the US and can’t catch one of the shows on the tour. There’s a DVD available from Future of Forestry‘s myspace page and, of course, I captured some video. Here’s Future of Forestry performing, “The Little Drummer Boy.”