I was studying Titus 1 with some friends recently and I was struck again by a topic that in the past has been very important to me. In Titus 1:1-2 says: “Paul, a slave of God and an apostle of Jesus Christ, to build up the faith of God's elect and their knowledge of the truth that leads to godliness, in the hope of eternal life that God, who cannot lie, promised before time began” (HCSB). It struck me again that God “does not lie” (ESV), “cannot lie” (HCSB, NKJV), “is not a liar” (Greek). God is limited. He is limited by His character.
The fact is that there are some rocks God cannot lift. This has nothing to do with omnipotence or the lack thereof. It has to do with the limits that God’s perfect character demands. If He were able to lie, He would no longer be perfect. His limits are what protect His perfection, His holiness.
If God has His limits, then we as His children must have ours, too. We are saved from sin to righteousness; we are saved to the limits that righteousness puts on us. As Paul writes, “‘Everything is permissible for me’—but not everything is beneficial. ‘Everything is permissible for me’—but I will not be mastered by anything” (1Co 6:12 – NIV84). Like God, we could do anything we want, but like God, we must be limited in our actions, in order to remain holy, in order to be a light to the world, in order to be beneficial to ourselves and others. If God has limits, how much more must we!