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Is God Everywhere, Omnipresent?

Is God Everywhere, Omnipresent?

The Bible’s answer

 God is able to see everything and to act anywhere he chooses. (Proverbs 15:3; Hebrews 4:13) However, the Bible does not teach that God is omnipresent​—that is, present everywhere, in all things. Instead, it shows that he is a person and that he resides in a dwelling place.

  •   God’s form: God is a spirit person. (John 4:​24) He is invisible to humans. (John 1:​18) Visions of God recorded in the Bible consistently portray him as having a distinct location. He is never depicted as existing everywhere.​—Isaiah 6:​1, 2; Revelation 4:​2, 3, 8.

  •   God’s dwelling place: God resides in the spirit realm, which is distinct from physical creation. Within that realm, God has a “dwelling place in the heavens.” (1 Kings 8:​30) The Bible mentions an occasion when spirit creatures “entered to take their station before Jehovah,” a showing that in a sense, God resides at a specific location.​—Job 1:6.

If God is not omnipresent, can he really care for me personally?

 Yes. God cares deeply about individuals. Although he lives in the spirit realm, God notices those on earth who truly want to please him, and he acts in their behalf. (1 Kings 8:​39; 2 Chronicles 16:9) Consider how Jehovah demonstrates his concern for sincere worshippers:

  •   When you pray: Jehovah can hear your prayer the moment you say it.​—2 Chronicles 18:31.

  •   When you are depressed: “Jehovah is close to the brokenhearted; he saves those who are crushed in spirit.”​—Psalm 34:18.

  •   When you need direction: Jehovah “will give you insight and instruct you” by means of his Word, the Bible.​—Psalm 32:8.

Misconceptions about omnipresence

 Misconception: God is present everywhere in creation.

 Fact: God dwells neither on the earth nor elsewhere in the physical universe. (1 Kings 8:​27) It is true that the stars and other creative works “are declaring the glory of God.” (Psalm 19:1) However, God does not inhabit his creation any more than an artist lives in his painting. Still, a painting can tell us something about the artist who made it. Similarly, the visible world tells us about the Creator’s “invisible qualities,” such as his power, wisdom, and love.​—Romans 1:​20.

 Misconception: God must be omnipresent in order to know all things and be all-powerful.

 Fact: God’s holy spirit, or active force, is God’s power in action. Through his holy spirit, God can perceive and do anything, anywhere, at any time, without being present in person.​—Psalm 139:7.

 Misconception: Psalm 139:8 teaches that God is omnipresent by saying: “If I were to ascend to heaven, you would be there, and if I were to make my bed in the Grave, look! you would be there.”

 Fact: This scripture is not talking about God’s location. It poetically teaches that no place is too remote for God to act in our behalf.

a Jehovah is the name of God as revealed in the Bible.