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Tuesday
Nov202012

Theological Term of the Week

communicable attributes
Those attributes of God that He shares with humans, although in a limited way, such as his love, goodness, justice and knowledge; those attributes of God that are to be imitated in our lives.

  • From scripture:
  • The LORD is good to all,

    and his mercy is over all that he has made. (Psalm 145:9 ESV)

    So then, as we have opportunity, let us do good to everyone, and especially to those who are of the household of faith. (Galatians 6:10 ESV)

     In this is love, not that we have loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins. [11] Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. (1 John 4:10-11 ESV)

  • From Systematic Theology by Wayne Grudem, God’s communicable attributes listed in five categories:
  • A. Attributes Describing God’s Being

    1. Spirituality 
    2. Invisibility 

    B. Mental Attributes

    3. Knowledge (or Omniscience)
    4. Wisdom
    5. Truthfulness (and Faithfulness) 

    C. Moral Attributes

    6. Goodness
    7. Love
    8. Mercy (Grace, Patience)
    9. Holiness
    10. Peace
    11. Righteousness (or Justice)
    12. Jealousy
    13. Wrath

    D. Attributes of Purpose

    14. Will
    15. Freedom
    16. Omnipotence (or Power, and Sovereignty)

    E. Summary Attributes

    17. Perfection
    18, Blessedness
    19. Beauty
    20. Glory
    15. Freedom
    16. Omnipotence (or Power, and Sovereignty)
Learn more:
  1. Blue Letter Bible: What are the various ways in which God’s attributes are categorized?
  2. Bruce Ware: Attributes of God: Communicable Attributes, Part 1, Part 2, Part 3 (audio)
  3. Wayne Grudem: The Character of God - Communicable Attributes, Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6, Part 7, Part 8, Part 9 (audio) 
  4. R. C. Sproul: Communicable Attributes (video)

Related term:

Filed under God’s Nature and His Work

Do you have a term you’d like to see featured here as a Theological Term of the Week? If you email it to me, I’ll seriously consider using it, giving you credit for the suggestion and linking back to your blog when I do.

Clicking on the Theological Term graphic at the top of this post will take you to a list of all the previous theological terms in alphabetical order.

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