Friday, 4/3/20 – Friday Tough Question

What’s possible?

woman in workout gear hanging upside down on doorway near green plants

I did a word study this morning on the occurrence of “possible” / “impossible” in scripture. I was surprised to discover there were no occurrences of either word in the Old Testament and only about 25 instances in the New Testament.

Of these 8 ask IF a thing might be possible: 2 ask if the “elect” could be deceived (Matt. 2424; Mk. 13:22), 2 occur where Christ entreats whether redemption might be accomplished some other way (Matt. 26:39; Mk. 14:35-36), and the rest in the context of Paul wondering if he might make it to Jerusalem by Pentecost, might navigate the ship a certain way, or if the Galatians might have given him their eyes and finally if men might live together peaceably (Acts 20:16; 27:39; Gal. 4:15; Rom. 12:18).

sky space telescope universe

Though all things are possible with God it is impossible for God to act contrary to His attributes. Thus it is impossible for God to lie (Heb. 6:18), or for the sacrifices of sinful mortals to provide atonement (Heb 10:4). A sinless sacrifice is necessary lest God act in ways contrary to His holiness, justness or purity. Since that sacrifice had to be Christ it is impossible to be saved apart from Him (Heb. 6:4). Because Christ is Himself Eternal God it is further impossible that death could hold Him (Acts 2:24).

Throughout these passages the definition of the Greek word used of things impossible is constant. The words ἀδυνατέω [adunateō] or ἀδύνατος [adunatos] mean “not to have strength, power, or ability, to be weak, unable, to be without strength, impotent, powerless, weakly, or disabled.”

Three times the incarnate Word draws the contrast that what man cannot do, God can:

“But Jesus beheld them, and said unto them, With men this is IMPOSSIBLE; but with God all things are POSSIBLE.” (Matt. 19:26)
“And Jesus looking upon them saith, With men it is IMPOSSIBLE, but not with God: for with God all things are POSSIBLE.” (Mark 10:27).
“And he said, The things which are IMPOSSIBLE with men are POSSIBLE with God.” (Luke 18:27).

man standing near snow field

This word “possible” in the Greek, δυνατός [dunatos] carries the meaning of “able, powerful, mighty, strong, mighty in wealth and influence, strong in soul, able to bear calamities and trials with fortitude and patience, strong in Christian virtue, to be able (to do something), mighty,  excelling in something, having power for something, powerful or capable.”

This is our God.

As we rest our faith in Him He works His power and peace in and through us. (Matt. 17:20; Mark 9:23). We walk by faith not sight. Do not be moved by fears all around you. God is in control. What He allows He meets with His Grace. Grace to endure or grace to overcome. Both require faith (Heb 11:6). “For with God nothing shall be imPOSSIBLE.” (Luke 1:37).

Press on…

Got a question? Use the Contact page and send It to me. We’ll search the Word for God’s answer.



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