The eyes of the LORD are in every place, beholding the evil and the good.
I. CONSIDER THE OMNISCIENCE OF GOD, AS IT IS AN ESSENTIAL ATTRIBUTE OF HIS NATURE.
1. That this knowledge is essentially inherent in the Divine nature is evident from the creation of the world. For as the beautiful variety of beings conspicuous in the universe were made by God, He must necessarily know the things He has made. Infinite power presupposes, or at least implies, infinite knowledge. Suppose some skilful artist to have framed a moving machine, consisting of various parts, and capable of performing many wonderful operations; it will perhaps puzzle divers spectators to explain, or even conceive the contexture of its parts, and the secret springs by which it moves; but will any man say the artist himself who made the machine is ignorant of the several parts of which it is composed, or that he knows not by what artful contrivance it is made to move? Is man, then, acquainted with the operations of his own hands, and can we suppose the Supreme Being to be ignorant of His?
2. Another argument to prove the omniscience of God may be drawn from the consideration of providence. If God presides over the whole universe, and governs all things both in heaven and earth, is it possible for Him to be ignorant of anything in the system of humanity? If He be the sovereign disposer of human creatures and their affairs, must He not perfectly understand their constitution and conduct?
3. Another argument to confirm the truth of God's omniscience may be taken from divers remarkable events that have happened in the world through the miraculous interposition of Providence. Who can reflect upon the various revolutions which happened to the ancient Israelites without feeling manifest traces of the Divine knowledge? For was it possible for the Almighty to have interposed in delivering that oppressed people from the cruel persecutions of Egypt if He had not previously known the condition they were in? Or how could He have framed a scheme of government so suitable to the genius of that untractable people if He had not thoroughly understood their natural tempers and most hidden inclinations?
4. To confirm this truth, besides the arguments already alleged there is another, which may be drawn from the idea of infinite perfection. For if God be a Being infinitely perfect, He must be infinitely knowing.
II. CONSIDER THIS ATTRIBUTE OF THE DEITY, AS IT IS A POWERFUL MOTIVE TO DESTROY US FROM SIN, AND ENGAGE US TO THE PRACTICE OF VIRTUE. It is the advice of Seneca to his friend Lucilius, that he should bear in his mind the idea of Socrates, or Cato, or some other excellent man, and imagine him to be a constant observer of his actions. This the philosopher proposes as a useful expedient to keep a man constantly virtuous in the whole conduct of his life. Let, therefore, the Searcher of all hearts, the Almighty, let Him be our Socrates, and our Cato; and if we judge it a matter of disgrace to do unworthy actions before a wife, friend, or philosopher, think what eternal shame we expose ourselves to when we sin before the all-seeing eyes of God.
Parallel VersesKJV: The eyes of the LORD are in every place, beholding the evil and the good.