God knows everything—past, present, and future—and nothing takes Him by surprise.
When we stumble and sin, it helps to remember that God is merciful. When we recognize that we have, once again, turned aside to idols of our own making, there are Scriptures that declare God’s faithfulness in spite of our frailty. And when we have been burned by some injustice—life-shattering or trivial—we can thank our Savior for being a righteous Judge who promises to set all things right in the end. Reflecting on God’s attributes can bring us peace in the midst of struggles. But there is one that can leave us feeling exposed: God’s omniscience.
Because He is all-knowing, there is nothing hidden from God’s sight—nothing in waking life or even in our imaginations. There is no event in the past, present, or future that takes Him by surprise. The entire universe is an open book.
This kind of knowledge in anyone else’s hands would be a dangerous weapon. It would be appropriate to live in a constant state of fear. But God’s omniscience is coupled with His other attributes. To be known by God, then, is to be valued and loved. None of us are here by mistake. He wants to know us. And that’s a very good thing; within each of us is a desire to be known.
We all want to be fully known and understood, and then to be fully loved. Of course, we too often conclude in our hearts we are unloveable. After all, we how we’ve done wrong and missed the mark, how easily we’ve given in to temptation. Our hearts condemn us daily. But “God is greater than our hearts, and he knows all things” (1 John 3:20).
On the day of Solomon’s coronation, David told his son, “The LORD searches every heart and understands the intention of every thought” (1 Chronicles 28:9). In these words, there is a warning, but there is also grace. True, there is no hiding from God. But there also isn’t anyone who could possibly know us better. Because Jesus dealt with our sin on the cross, purifying us as a bride for her husband, God’s omniscience is not reason to fear blanket condemnation; instead, it’s an invitation to true intimacy with our Maker.