What Are The Attributes of God? A Detailed Guide

By Charalampos •  Updated: 04/01/23 •  6 min read

As Christians, we are constantly in awe of God’s power and love. But how well do we understand Him?

While Scripture gives us an invaluable glimpse into the character and nature of God, it can be difficult to provide a comprehensive overview of all His attributes.

In this blog post, we will explore the major aspects of who God is — His holiness, righteousness, mercy, wisdom, and more—to gain insight into His perfect goodness that transcends our understanding.

The Concept of God

In the Christian tradition, God is often described as a divine being possessing certain attributes that set Him apart from all other beings. These attributes are crucial to understanding the nature of God and His relationship with humanity.

The attributes of God can be divided into two broad categories: communicable and incommunicable attributes.

Communicable attributes are those qualities that God shares with humanity, while incommunicable attributes are those that are unique to God and cannot be shared with any other being.

Read Also: How Old is God?

The Incommunicable Attributes

Incommunicable Attributes of God

One of the incommunicable attributes of God is His eternal nature. God has no beginning and no end. The book of Revelation says, «I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end» (Revelation 21:6).

Saint Athanasius describes God’s eternal nature in this way: «The Word was not brought into being out of nothing, nor was he created, but he is the eternal Son, the Word of the eternal Father». It means that Holy Trinity is eternal and has always existed.

Another incommunicable attribute of God is His omnipotence. God is all-powerful and nothing is beyond His ability.

As the prophet, Jeremiah says, «Ah, Lord God! It is you who have made the heavens and the earth by your great power and by your outstretched arm! Nothing is too hard for you» (Jeremiah 32:17).

Saint John Chrysostom describes God’s omnipotence: «What can be compared to God’s power? What can be equal to His might? For God is strong and omnipotent». God created our world and can make everything that is needed.

God also has omniscience. He is all-knowing and has complete knowledge of everything that exists.

In the Old Testament is written: «Remember the former things of old; for I am God, and there is no other; I am God, and there is none like me, declaring the end from the beginning and from ancient times things not yet done» (Isaiah 46:9-10). Saint Augustine describes God’s omniscience: «God knows all things, not because He has learned them, but because He has willed them»

So, God knows everything that happens in the world, he knows all thoughts of people and sees all possible outcomes in the future.

Related Read: Why God Hates Me?

The Communicable Attributes

The Communicable Attributes of God

One of the communicable attributes of God is His love. God is the source and embodiment of love, and He desires that all of His creation would experience His love.

Saint Maximus the Confessor writes: «The love of God does not find, but creates, that which is pleasing to it. The love of man comes into being through that which is pleasing to it».

The apostle John says, «God is love, and whoever abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him» (1 John 4:16). God’s love is available to all people equally.

Mercy is also an important attribute of God. God is merciful and desires that all people would turn to Him and receive His mercy.

«The Lord is merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love» (Psalm 103:8).

Saint Isaac of Nineveh writes: «Let yourself be persecuted but do not persecute. Be crucified, but do not crucify. Be slandered, but do not slander. Rejoice with those who rejoice, and weep with those who weep, such is the sign of purity. Suffer with the sick. Be afflicted with sinners. Exult with those who repent. Be the friend of all, but in your spirit remain alone». 

This quality of God that Christians should also have comes from His love.

God’s Justice

The next attribute of God is His justice. God is a just judge who always acts in accordance with His perfect righteousness. 

«Righteousness and justice are the foundation of your throne; steadfast love and faithfulness go before you» (Psalm 89:14). This is one of the main aspects of understanding God. God is fair to all people and leads people to the best possible outcome.

Saint Gregory of Nyssa wrote: «The divine justice is not to be understood as the avenger of sins, but as the healer of those who has sinned».

These attributes of God aren’t separate from one another, but rather they are intertwined and work together to reveal the nature of God.

Saint John of Damascus writes, «God’s attributes are not different from His essence, but are the same as His essence».

Read Also: What is Theosis?

Other Qualities of God

Qualities of God

The most basic and main qualities of God have been listed, but there are more attributes, some of which come from others.

For example, some of these are the following:

The main aspect of understanding God is Holy Trinity. The Church Fathers describe the Trinity as a mystery that cannot be fully comprehended by human reason but can be experienced through faith and the sacramental life of the Church.

Saint Basil the Great writes, «We confess one God in three persons, each of the persons is God and the whole is God, for God is not divided, but is the same substance».

Final Thoughts

Now we have known what attributes God has. We can’t know all the details, but all of the above is important for understanding the Bible and our faith.

Understanding the nature of God can help us to build a relationship with God through prayer and the study of Scripture.

Saint John Chrysostom wrote: «Let us draw near to Him with all reverence and love, with trembling and with joy, so that we may receive His grace, His mercy, and His love, and may become partakers of His divine nature». All these things start with understanding God.

As we seek to understand and experience the attributes of God, we can also recognize the importance of living out these attributes in our relationships with others.

Saint Isaac the Syrian writes, «A merciful heart is a key to paradise. The wrath of God arises only in those who have acquired the hardness of heart and love of power». 

Many qualities inherent in God are very important in our lives, such as justice, love, and kindness. By knowing these qualities we can strive to imitate the mercy and compassion of God in our life.


Charalampos is an Orthodox Christian who wants to help others learn about Christianity. His main goal is to help people understand the Bible and how to apply its teachings in their everyday lives. He also enjoys spending time with his family, playing sports, and hiking.

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