What is the aseity of God?
Question: "What is the aseity of God?"
Answer: The aseity of God is His attribute of independent self-existence. God is the uncaused Cause, the uncreated Creator. He is the source of all things, the One who originated everything and who sustains everything that exists. The aseity of God means that He is the One in whom all other things find their source, existence, and continuance. He is the ever-present Power that sustains all life. There is no other source of life and none other like Him: “For I am God, and there is no other; I am God, and there is none like Me” (Isaiah 46:9).
The aseity of God is expressed in Exodus 3:14. When Moses asked the Lord about His name, God replied, “I AM WHO I AM.” God is the eternally self-existent Being who always was and always will be. The aseity of God is related to His complete independence. God has no need. He is complete in and of Himself and always has been. God did not create man because He was lonely or because He needed to create. He is and always has been complete and self-sufficient in and of Himself.
God’s name I AM embodies the concept of God’s eternality and immutability, both of which are linked to His aseity. God is eternal (Psalm 90:2). He did not have a beginning. He has always been. God is unchangeable (Malachi 3:6; James 1:17), always the same yesterday, today, and forever. He will be what He is forever. All of God’s attributes—His love, power, wisdom, etc.—are eternal and unchanging. They are as they have always been and will never be any different.
God’s aseity assures us that His autonomy is absolute. He alone decides what to do, and nothing can ever thwart His purpose to keep His promises. What He promises to do, He will do. What He predicts will come to pass. When God says, “My purpose will stand, and I will do all that I please” (Isaiah 46:10), He is emphasizing His aseity and sovereignty.
Jesus Christ, being God in flesh, shares the aseity of God with the Father. Jesus claimed the name I AM for Himself (John 8:58; 18:6). Speaking of Jesus, Paul declares, “In him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him. He is before all things, and in him all things hold together” (Colossians 1:16–17). Jesus is not a created being. He came to earth as God in flesh and after His resurrection ascended back into heaven to take His rightful place as Creator of the universe. In the Old Testament, God declared to the Israelites that He is “the First and the Last” (Isaiah 44:6b). Jesus made the same declaration about Himself in Revelation 1:17.
Because of the aseity of God, we can depend upon Him as the independent One who is able to deliver, protect, and keep those who trust in Him. Those whom God has purposed for salvation will come to Christ, and nothing can hinder them: “All those the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never drive away” (John 6:37). If we understand the biblical doctrine of the aseity of God, we will be kept from the error of thinking that God is finite, that He grows weary, or that He will ever be insufficient to meet our needs (see Psalm 23:1).
Recommended Resource: Knowing God by J.I. Packer
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What is the aseity of God?