13. Where does God reside?

The Bible teaches that God is both transcendent (above all things), and immanent (among us). In the book of Isaiah chapter 55 verses 8 – 9 we read ‘For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.’ In the Gospel of Luke chapter 2 verse 14 it states ‘Glory to God in the highest.’ This describes the transcendence of God as high above all things. On the other hand, the first epistle of John chapter 4 verses 11, 12 states: ‘God abides in us and His love is perfected in us, by this we know that we abide in Him, and He in us, because He has given us of His Spirit.’ This describes the way in which we can experience the Immanence of God, that is, God among us.

In the Qu’ran surah 2 Al Baqarah ayah 186 we read: ‘When my servants ask concerning Me, I am indeed close to them: I listen to the prayer of every suppliant when he calleth on Me: Let them also, with a will, listen to my call, and believe in Me: that they may walk in ‘the right path.’ In surah 40 Ghafir ayah 60 it states: ‘And your Lord says: ‘Call on Me; I will answer your prayer; but those who are too arrogant to serve Me will surely find themselves in Hell – in humiliation.’ These two passages of the Qur’an assures a humble, obedient Muslim that Allâh hears their prayers and will answer them.