Divine Transcendence

Thine, O LORD, is the greatness, and the power, and the glory, and the victory, and me majesty: for all that is in the heaven and in the earth is thine; thine is the Kingdom, O LORD, and thou art exalted as head above all. —1 Chronicles 29:11

The term divine transcendence may sound like something that takes a lot of learning or at least a lot of profound thinking to understand, but it doesn’t. Transcend simply means to go above, to rise above, to be above. Of course, it’s very difficult to think of God as transcendent and also as immanent or omnipresent at the same time. It is difficult to understand how He can be here with us, in us, pervading all things, but at the same time transcending all things. It looks like a contradiction, but as with many other apparent contradictions, it’s not at all contradictory; the two thoughts are entirely in accord with each other.

God is always nearer than you may imagine Him to be. God is so near that your thoughts are not as near as God; your breath is not as near as God; your very soul is not as near to you as God is. And yet, because He is God, His uncreated Being is so far above us that no thought can conceive it nor words express it….

There is a vast gulf… between the great I AM and all created things…. God’s uncreated quality of life causes Him to be transcendent, to rise high above all creatures.

Lord, how awesome that You can be above all and yet so close. I am Your humble servant; may I act according to Your will today. Amen.

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