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The Blue Letter Bible

Don Stewart :: Which Words in the Bible Express the Omniscience of God?

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Don Stewart

There are a number of words in Scripture that express God's omniscience - that He knows everything. From them we gain insight into the knowledge of God.

Foreknowledge - He Knows What Will Happen

One key word is foreknowledge. This means that God knows everything that will happen before it occurs.

For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. And those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified (Romans 8:29-30).

In the Book of Acts it states.

This man was handed over to you by God's set purpose and foreknowledge; and you, with the help of wicked men, or of those not having the law (that is, Gentiles)} put him to death by nailing him to the cross (Acts 2:23).

Peter wrote.

Who have been chosen according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through the sanctifying work of the Spirit, for obedience to Jesus Christ and sprinkling by his blood: Grace and peace be yours in abundance (1 Peter 1:2).

Foreseeing - He Sees Everything Ahead Of Time

Foreseeing is another term that speaks of God knowing everything that will occur.

The Scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, preached the gospel beforehand to Abraham, saying, "All the nations will be blessed in you" (Galatians 3:8).

Peter said.

Foreseeing this, David spoke of the resurrection of the Messiah, saying, "He was not abandoned to Hades, nor did his flesh experience corruption" (Acts 2:31).

Foretelling - God Tells Us What Will Happen Ahead Of Time

Foretelling speaks of God knowing future events.

In this way God fulfilled what he had foretold through all the prophets, that his Messiah would suffer (Acts 3:18).

Foreordained - God Determines Certain Things Ahead Of Time

The word foreordained speaks of events that God determined ahead of time.

But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot. He indeed was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you (1 Peter 1: 19-20).

Paul wrote.

Who has saved us and called us to a holy life - not because of anything we have done but because of his own purpose and grace. This grace was given us in Christ Jesus before the beginning of time (2 Timothy 1:9).


These four biblical words make clear that God knows everything. They are foreknowledge, foreseeing, foretelling and foreordained. Foreknowledge means God know what will happen before it occurs. Foreseeing has the idea of God seeing events before they actually take place. Foretelling means that God perfectly predicts what will happen before it does happen. The word foreordained means that God has ordained events to occur in the future. Because he has foreordained them they will happen. These words confirm the biblical truth that God knows everything - past, present, and future.

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