One of the debates in athletics, especially in boxing, is how much muscle is too much. It is suggested that when a fighter becomes too muscle-bound, their flexibility, quickness, and endurance are all compromised.
In a theological equivalent, some have suggested that there are certain ways that God is limited due to His sovereignty. When you are as sovereign as God, it is argued, you can’t allow others to have genuine free will or allow life to just play out. God is just too sovereign (muscle-bound) to allow such things. But is God really limited by the prodigiousness of His own capabilities? Are His capacities so great that they become self-limiting?
Following this logic, how does God allow anything to exist outside of Himself? Since God is omniscient, does that mean that He can’t allow ignorance to exist? Since God is omnipresent, does that mean that nothing else can fill any part of the same space? Since God is omnipotent, does that mean that only He can wield power? Of course, all of these things are allowed to exist outside of the personhood of God.
Despite this, it is argued that because God is sovereign, He can’t create mankind to have free will. This point of view turns God’s unlimited ability into a limitation, which is contradictory. Isn’t it better to understand that God exercises complete control over His unlimited capacities? Isn’t it more consistent to believe that there is no good thing that God can’t do?
This certainly finds support in the Scriptures which acknowledge both the unlimited nature of God’s divine attributes, as well as the reality of man’s free will.
“Ah, Sovereign LORD, you have made the heavens and the earth by your great power and outstretched arm. Nothing is too hard for you" (Jeremiah 32:17, NIV).