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Gerard de VosCreated by Gerard de Vos
on 02-02-2009
Category: Bible related
Why is God invisible?

These days there is a charge that surfaces every so often that since God cannot be proved scientifically, He probably doesn’t exist. (Science can test only the observable.) Why did God decide to hide Himself? God knows how people behave when they see a traffic or police officer. They put on a holy face as if no butter will melt in their mouths; they are very careful and friendly; they don’t transgress any traffic rules or other laws. Even a criminal will behave in front of the police. That is not to say that he behaves when he is out of sight.

What would happen if God gave us proofs that He exists all day long? For example if He appeared personally, or gave a burning cross in the sky? Every one would be very careful to be on their best behavior. But as a criminal cannot be trusted out of sight, God devised a plan to test people’s good behavior. Would they believe He exists and therefore behave and obey His commands, even when He was invisible? In that way He can detect what is in a man’s heart, because no evil will be allowed in heaven.

God is not impatient, but allows each person ample opportunities to choose to accept or reject Him. This explains why many dictators and evil people are not removed by God. He gives them time to either live out their evil tendencies and thereby condemn themselves, or maybe repent. A Biblical example of such a person is one of the kings of Israel, Manasseh. He is regarded as the Prodical Son of the Old Testament. As a thoroughly evil man, he turned away from all God’s laws and committed every sin he could think of. God eventually could stand it no longer and he was punished. He was imprisoned by the Assyrians, who put a hook in his nose to display his impotence in the sight of the Assyrians and the captured Israelites. He greatly humbled himself before God, repented and God showed him mercy. He was miraculously returned to Jerusalem and restored as king (2 Chronicles 33:1-20).

We find the same principle in Revelation 2:20-22. God says that He gave the woman, Jezebel, time to repent of her sins, but she was unwilling. This means that she condemned herself, and can never blame anybody else. Maybe if she saw a sign of God in the sky, or He appeared to her, she might have tried to give a superficial impression of becoming ‘good.’ This will never work in eternity, since she didn’t love God or intend to get rid of her sin. Think what havoc she would have caused if she was allowed to be part of the Bride of Christ. She would have turned against Jesus in heaven. God would then have needed to judge her, and expel her from His presence and everything would be back to square one. No, God gives each person the opportunity before he dies to decide for or against Him and to live up to that decision. God always remains the champion of freedom - freedom for people to decide their course in life and to determine their destination after death. God doesn’t use force or try to convince or coerce people by promises of a good life, money, or success.

Why is God invisible? It is His choice, to test us and prepare us for eternity. He has given enough proofs in the Word that He is real. But faith is still necessary, because each person has to trust for himself that God exists and is a rewarder of those who earnestly seek Him (Hebrews 11:6).

"But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong.” 1 Corinth 1:27