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De Moor IV:35: The Perfection of God's Knowledge Asserted from Romans 11 (by Voetius)


VOETIUS, in his Disputationum Theologicarum, part III, page 691, out of Pererius[1] and Lapide,[2] in Commenting on Romans 11, observes that eleven modes and relations are given whereby the Knowledge of God far excels all created knowledge: “First, with respect to its object: For God by His own knowledge is acquainted with all things past, present, and future, all possibilities, and Himself, the deep of all things, as it were. Second, with respect to the mode and perfection in knowing: for God knows all things most perfectly, in every way in which they are knowable, and therefore He completely comprehends all things. Third, with respect to the means: for God, not by appearances, nor by effects, but by His own essence, as a perfectly clear glass, knows all things. Fourth, with respect to swiftness: for in one instant intuition of mind God knows all things simultaneously. Fifth, with respect to certitude: for He knows with utmost certitude all things, even contingencies, uncertain in and of themselves. Sixth, with respect to eternity: because His knowledge has no beginning, and has no end. Seventh, with respect to uniformity: because the knowledge of God is invariable, and always the same, neither increasing nor decreasing. Eighth, with respect to simplicity and unity: because by one altogether simple act of understanding God knows both Himself, and all things. Ninth, with respect to being: for the knowledge of God is not accidental, as it is in men and angels; but it is substantial in God, and is God Himself. Tenth, with respect to causality: because the knowledge of God is the idea and cause of all things that have come to pass. Eleventh, with respect to fecundity and communication: for God’s wisdom and knowledge, because it is the greatest light, diffuses itself to angels, men, and all living things: He makes all things to be known and to know.”

[1] Benedictus Pererius (1535-1610) was a Spanish Jesuit theologian and commentator. He wrote extensively on Genesis, Exodus, Daniel, John, Romans, and Revelation.

[2] Cornelius à Lapide (1567-1637) was a Flemish Jesuit scholar. His talents were employed in the professorship of Hebrew at Louvain, then at Rome. Although his commentaries (covering the entire Roman Catholic canon, excepting only Job and the Psalms) develop the four-fold sense of Scripture, he emphasizes the literal. His knowledge of Hebrew, Greek, and the commentators that preceded him is noteworthy.

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