Why Does God Hide Himself? David Jon Hill & Robert L Kuhn
Generations of agnostics and religionists alike have been baffled. Hot debate has raged for centuries. Philosophers have long inquired about God's whereabouts. Theologians have long made excuses for His absence. But must we make excuses for God? Why has God hidden Himself? It's time to get a straight answer.
AGNOSTIC Arnold finally "got" Religious Ralph. After years of late hours and rigorous discussions, Religious Ralph was hacked into a corner. He couldn't refute Agnostic Arnold's argument. Could you? Try. HERE'S ARNIE'S ARGUMENT: "'Your God' claims to be the all-powerful 'Creator' of the entire universe. But man doubts Isis very existence! And supposedly man is 'your God's' greatest creation. That doesn't make sense. If 'your God' really exists wily doesn't He show Himself? If He openly made Himself known to all mankind, nobody could question, 'Does God exist?' — Nations would be at peace, our problems would be solved, and man would he happy. But 'your God' has conveniently chosen to hide! Come on now, tell me why!" Religious Ralph was stunned. All those years of Sunday school went "down the drain." He fidgeted and mumbled — "God is trying to save the world. Look at all His churches." Instantly a confident smile erupted on Agnostic Arnold's flushed face. Poor Ralph was stuck. Sensing a "kill," Aggressive Arnie pressed his attack. "All right, Ralphy boy, I'll look at 'all His churches.' What a bickering mish-mash of contradictory concepts, superstitious incantations, hypocritical ministers and unconcerned members. Open your eyes, Ralph. You look at 'all His churches' — closeted in steepled sanctuaries and fighting among themselves about every absurd interpretation of every irrelevant doctrine. And all the while society tumbles from very bad to even worse. Ralphy boy, mankind is going to exterminate himself — and 'your God' is just going to watch! "You admit that 'your hypothetical God' could appear to the whole world if He wished to. He could clear up 'His mess' if He wanted to. So I guess He just doesn't care. Because He's staying safely hidden. Maybe He likes the world the way it is! "'Your God' must have made a very willful decision to obscure His presence. Therefore, Ralphy boy, we can only conclude that what your God does want is for man to doubt His existence. Obviously he enjoys gazing upon little men running around blindfolded in the dark — forever questioning but never knowing, forever searching but never finding. "'Your God' professes to be merciful — yet he creates man with a burning desire to comprehend Eternal Truth and at the same time makes it impossible for him to ever attain it. Like a child holding a beetle on its back watching it thrash its way to death, 'your God' has conjured up man merely to be the butt of a colossal cosmic joke. And that, Ralphy boy, my dear friend, is outright sadism. "So what about your archaic notion of an 'all-wise, loving Father'? Why has He run off like some high-strung woman with a hair-trigger temper? Out of spite? Disgust? Tired blood? Perhaps He felt slighted — and 'tucked His tail' and slinked away like a forsaken lover whose weak advances were ignored. Or maybe He got frustrated — muttering show them' as He scampered off to plan His revenge. "Why does God hide Himself? The answer seems simple to me: Either He doesn't exist, or He's a vindictive sadist — take your choice!" Religious Ralph helplessly answered, "I know God exists by faith!" With that he pretended to dismiss Agnostic Arnold's argument. But they both knew that Offensive Arnie's reasoning prevailed. So with a condescending slap on the back and a brisk walk to the door, Triumphant Arnie departed. And a whipped Religious Ralph stumbled back to his chair and slumped into it. Why does God hide Himself? A dejected Reluctant Ralph had to confess that he just didn't know!
What About You?
Could you have answered Obnoxious Arnie's arguments? God tells us not to debate — but we should be able to convict (not convince) the gainsayers. We should be ready with an answer to any who ask a reason for the hope that is within us (I Peter 3:15). Don't be satisfied with being "just simple folk" who aimlessly idle about under the protective shelter of blind faith like Religious Ralph. You CAN have that answer. This article will give it to you. This article is written for you — to back up and prove your faith! You don't need to fear the lofty proclamations of "educated" skeptics and "lettered" philosophers. You won't have to make feeble excuses for God's "absence." You can know — and know that you know — exactly why God hides Himself! We are not going to feed you some wishy-washy, pseudo-spiritual, halfhearted "possibility." We are going to answer the question once and for all. And it's going to be easy. Let's get that straight! You won't have to learn Hebrew, Aramaic, Greek or Latin. You won't have to take courses in symbolic logic. You won't have to struggle through verbose "statements and propositions." You won't even need an unabridged dictionary by your side. We are going to discover the remarkably straightforward answer to the basic agnostic question, "Why does God hide Himself," through the common facts of history and science — facts which you ALREADY know!
We start with what we can sense — the physical universe — and we find blunt proof that only a Supreme Creator could have fashioned it all together into such a wondrously unified whole. From the forces which bind atomic nuclei to the principles which run giant galaxies, from the fullness of earth to the emptiness of space, from the existence of law to the law of existence, from the beauty of creation to a mind which can comprehend it — all testify to the power of our God, all blazon forth the conclusive evidence of His existence (Rom. 1:20). The ancient philosophers knew God. How? By asking the right questions! They examined their world — and found order and harmony; they wondered about life — and found system and design. And when they did, God began to be revealed to them. Why? Because order, harmony, system and design demanded a Creator God. Then they searched within themselves ("know thyself") — and they found their own self -conscious human mind. How could this mind have come into existence? Only by the creative act of a Supreme Self-Consciousness — the same Creator God! The ancient philosophers were forced to realize this plain fact! "It is not that they [the philosophers] do not know the truth about God; indeed He has made it quite plain to them" (Rom. 1:19, Phillips). But philosophers didn't expect — and certainly didn't like — this kind of revelation. The absolute existence of a Supreme Being just didn't "go over" too well. Why? Because these conceited "intellects" only desired "esoteric metaphysical truths." Why? So that they alone could understand it. Why? Because they wanted to be their own "god" and amass their own worshipful following. So they held back God's Truth in unrighteousness (Rom. 1:18) — and consequently they lost it. "Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened. Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools" (Rom. 1:21-22). What about our modern "philosophers" — scientists, politicians, businessmen? They're no different! It seems silly, but rather than becoming more humble as life's unbelievable organization and design are unveiled, detail-oriented scientists have become more deeply imbued with a grandiose sense of personal power in their own human reason. Scientists often give the impression (and may actually begin to believe) that they are inventing and sustaining the basic laws of life and brain — when, in reality, they have just uncovered and described some superficial events. Like a bunch of roosters fighting for "supremacy of the known world" in the barnyard, our "modern philosophers" have completely ignored reality. True, some few "moderns" do agree with Dr. Warren 'Weaver's statement that "Every new discovery of science is a further 'revelation' of the order which God has built into this universe." But even here "God" is often only a term borrowed from religion — it is just a name used to symbolize some unconscious "first-cause," and is condescendingly employed solely to pacify those people whom scientists secretly call "the ignorant, superstitious masses." And that probably includes all of us. Which doesn't hurt our feelings one bit — because God has opened our minds to His Truth. God has indeed revealed Himself through the intricate tapestry of His physical creation. We can see it. The world can't. The world doesn't want to. God is available to all — but all reject Him. He is even more available to the educated, the thoughtful, the scientific. God is "plainly discernible through things which he has made and which are commonly seen and known, thus leaving these men without a rag of excuse" (Rom. 1:20, Phillips Translation).
Get the Perspective of History
Human beings are historically narrow-minded. We look at our world fresh from the exhilaration of casually witnessing televised close-ups of two men jaunting on the moon. We don't realize that man's very first flight took place just 66 years ago. The average person emotionally considers his adult life to be the totality of human history — even though he intellectually recognizes that man has been around for thousands of years. When we ponder our wretched God-forsaken world tottering on the brink of global suicide, we become sickened by the poisoned cloud of permanent personal agony mushrooming on our horizon. Is it surprising then that human beings see the absolute necessity for supernatural help (if such help exists) — and legitimately ask, "Why is God hiding Himself?" Let's take the blinders off our eyes! Let's visualize the full scope of 6000years of human history — multiple dozens of generations strung end to end. Let's understand the true history of the relationship between man and his God.
Start at the Beginning
Adam was the first human being ("enlightened" anthropology notwithstanding). And God dealt very intimately with Adam: forming him (Gen. 2:7), moving him (2:15), bringing animals to him (2:19), teaching him (2:19, 20), giving him a wife (2:22), etc. Adam knew God as we know our parents — God literally walked in the garden of Eden (3:8). But Adam, rather than following his Creator's orders, obeyed his own human reasoning — ADAM SINNED. And immediately thereafter, "Adam and his wife HID THEMSELVES FROM THE PRESENCE OF THE LORD GOD" (Gen.3:8). That's the crucial point! Man hid from God — God didn't hide from man. This is the crux of the whole question, "Why does God hide Himself?" Because God did reveal Himself. It was man who hid. Man was the first to play "hide-and-go-seek" and man was the first to run and hide. As a matter of fact, man has always hidden from God. Throughout history — in every time and generation, no matter what the circumstance and situation — whenever God has revealed Himself to help men or nations, that man or nation has crudely told God: "Keep Your (unprintable) Nose out of our (unprintable) business" — and more often than not backed up that blasphemous insult by murdering God's contemporary human representative (Matt. 23:37). This then is the purpose of this article: to irrefutably demonstrate that man has always hidden from God — and that God has not, does not, and will not hide from man. From Adam down through all history to the present day and even on into the future, we are going to watch man resist God's every revelation of Himself. Don't just believe us now. Make us prove our point! Make us prove that God is always ready to reveal Himself to man. And make us prove that man has consciously and continuously hidden himself from God.
Adam — the "Prototype"
God created Adam as His "test case" or "prototype" for all mankind (the Hebrew word for "man" is "adam!"). How did the Creator make Adam His prototype? By putting the same human brain, spirit, mind and nature in Adam as He would subsequently put in all other human beings. Therefore, God knew that Adam would react to a given situation in the same general manner as every other human being would react to that same situation. As Adam "went" so all mankind would "go." God designed human nature to be vain, jealous, lustful, greedy, and antagonistic to God — so that when man would learn to control his carnal nature, eternal and Godly character could be developed (Rom. 8:20-21). So Adam sinned and hid himself from God — precisely conforming to God's specifications. And when that happened God knew that every subsequent carnal human being would likewise sin and hide himself from God. And that's been the history of the human race ever since: cringing before God, hating God, spurning God, hiding from God. Now let's widen our field of view. Let's look down the corridors of time and generations of societies — and observe man's consistent repudiation of God. God hiding Himself from man? Hardly! It's been just the reverse!
Pre- and Post-Flood Worlds
The pre-Flood world teemed with wickedness and overflowed with violence — Gen. 6:5 is unique in its poetic portrayal of the prodigious depravity of man. Yet the world knew God! It was only ten generations from Adam to Noah — and human beings had a nine-generation lifespan! Furthermore, Noah was the eighth preacher of righteousness ( II Peter 2:5). For the 120 years during which his servants built the Ark, Noah himself proclaimed God's warning witness. The world heard Noah and the world knew God — but the world despised Noah and the world rejected God. The entire human race at that time "had [knowingly] corrupted His Way upon the earth" (Gen. 6:12). Little more than 100 years later, man once more renounced God's revelation and leadership. Man didn't want to be distributed around the world as God directed Noah (Gen. 11:4) — so man built for himself a huge tower as a rallying point to thwart God. There was no excuse — everyone knew God — all had heard the heinous firsthand accounts of the monstrous pre-Flood world and all could see the still fresh evidence of God's wrath. All knew God's servant Noah — and all flouted him.
Israel Habitually Rejected God
We think of ancient Israel as God's "Chosen People." Yet God's every revelation of Himself to Israel was met with rebuff and rebellion. Israel cursed Moses for trying to free them (Ex. 5:21). They told Moses to "Let us alone, that we may serve the Egyptians" (Ex. 14:12). Israel didn't want to leave Egypt and serve God — they loved the idols and abominations of Egypt too much (Ezek. 20:8) — so God had to pry Israel loose by pouring out His devastating plagues. Even after witnessing the supernatural ferocity of these plagues, God's "Chosen People" wanted to return to Egypt (Ex. 14: 10-12). With the victory celebration of God's spectacular destruction of Pharaoh's army still ringing in their ears, "The people murmured against Moses" because the waters of Marah were bitter (Ex. 15:23-24). Even after God had made these waters sweet, Israel again murmured, incredibly preferring to have died in Egypt with bellies full of meat and bread than to have obeyed God (Ex. 16:3). After receiving all the meat they could eat, Israel broke the Sabbath in an effort to get more (Ex.16:27-28). Once more Israel got thirsty and this time they were ready to stone Moses (Ex. 17:4). And, as unbelievable as it sounds, after all they had seen with their own eyes, they asked "Is the Lord among us or not?" (Ex. 17:7) — or, in other words, "Why is God hiding?" God answered that question in His glory on Mt. Sinai. "And all the people saw the thunderings, and the lightnings, and the noise of the trumpet, and the mountain smoking" (Ex. 20:18). Here was God "coming out of hiding" — here was God "finally" revealing Himself. But what happened? "And when the people saw it, they removed, and stood afar off. And they said unto Moses, Speak thou with us, and we will hear; BUT LET NOT GOD SPEAK WITH US, lest we die" (Ex. 20:18, 19). Here was man plainly asking God to cut off all personal communication with them. Here was man telling God to get lost! And we have the audacity to ask — why does God hide Himself! A short time later Israel reasoned that "Moses THE MAN" (Ex. 32:1) had brought them out of Egypt — and since he was missing, the Egyptian gods had better be reactivated to supervise their orgy (Ex. 32:1-6). After once more receiving God's stern correction, and with the full knowledge of God's continuous revelation and awesome Power filling their minds, Israel mutinied on the threshold of the Promised Land: "And they said one to another, Let us make a captain and let us return into Egypt" (Num. 14:4). Why does God hide Himself? What can we say? Ancient Israel has said it all!
In the Promised Land
When Israel was finally allowed to enter the land promised to Abraham's seed, she continually rebelled. (That's not particularly surprising) The cycle went round and round: Israel forsook God and was conquered (Judges 2:1115), then she cried out to God and was delivered (Judges 2:16) — but a very short time later she forsook God again (Judges 2:17-19). The entire book of Judges tells this amazing story (Judges 3:7-9; 3:12-15; 4:1-4; 6:1-8; etc). Soon thereafter, Israel completely rejected God's reign over them — demanding a human king "like all the other nations" (I Sam. 8:5-7). Some 120 years later, Israel's northern ten tribes rebelled against the house of David. Jeroboam, their servant-king, resurrected again the old Egyptian gods, instituted a new priesthood, and changed God's annual festivals — all to protect his own reign, willfully ignoring the True God (I Kings 12:26-33). The House of Israel rejected those they knew to be prophets of God. Isaiah was such a man. He told Hezekiah that God would stop the besieging armies of Assyria from even touching Jerusalem (II Kings 19) — and that night God killed 185,000 armed men (verse 35). Later, after Isaiah prayed to God, the sun went backwards ten degrees (II Kings 20:11). There was NO DOUBT who Isaiah's boss was! Yet some years later, tradition tells us that Isaiah was sawed in two by his own people (Heb. 11:37). Likewise the House of Judah rejected the men of God (and she was worse than her sister Israel — Ezek. 23:11). Jeremiah was ordained a prophet from his mother's womb (Jer. 1:5). He was always in the public eye — revealing God's will, way and prophecies. All Judah knew that Jeremiah was God's representative — yet he was held in derision daily, everyone mocked him (Jer. 20:7), and all the priests, prophets and people conspired to kill him (Jer. 26:8). The House of Israel was taken captive beginning in 718 B.C. by Assyria. Israel had long since forgotten God's Sabbath — and so even their identity was lost. The House of Judah was taken captive by Babylonia in 585 B.C. They retained the Sabbath and kept their identity. But they mongrelized God's Truth so badly, by adding many pagan ideas, (for example, the immortality of the soul), that a new-found religion was born. The facts speak plainly — at every step in their history Israel and Judah hid from and rejected their God.
The Full Revelation
Whereas in the past God spoke through many forms, fashions and figures, and communicated by various means, methods and manners, He was now ready to pour out the whole story through a Son (Heb. 1:1-2, Phillips). It was exactly 483 years after Artaxerxes' decree allowing the repatriated Jews to rebuild Jerusalem — just as Daniel had prophesied (Dan. 9:25) — when Jesus Christ of Nazareth began His ministry in 27 A.D. It was God Almighty's time to completely reveal Himself. He had become a human being! As strange as it sounds, Jesus Christ was the very God of the Old Testament — the Everliving One called YHVH, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. He was the One who had created the universe (John 1:3; Eph. 3:9). He had walked with Adam, dined with Abraham, wrestled with Jacob, spoken with Moses, and watched over Israel (I Cor. 10 :4 ). But this was vastly different — He had now emptied Himself of eternal spirit life and became human flesh, subject to death! (Phil. 2:7) For what reason? To help His beloved creation — to pave the way for His brothers to become joint-heirs with Him in God's Family (Rom. 8:17). God no longer held anything back — here was His full revelation to man. But He was despised and rejected of men (Isaiah 53:3)! He was beaten so badly that His face emerged more disfigured and His body more mutilated than any man in all history (Isaiah 52:14). That's what happened when God "came out of hiding." Who called for Christ's blood? Many of the same multitudes whom He had taught and fed for weeks and months and years. They knew He was from God (John 3:2), they knew He could give Eternal Life (Mark 10:17) — they worshipped Him (Mark 7:7). But they also expected that He would drive out the Romans and set up an independent Jewish kingdom immediately. No, they didn't "expect" it, they DEMANDED it. That's why many thousands lined His route into Jerusalem, garnished His path, and shouted praises to "the kingdom of our father David" (Mark 11: 8-10). The people wanted God on their own terms. And when He wouldn't agree, they shouted, "String Him up! Kill Him!" You doubt? Read on. The Judean multitudes were stunned when Christ was captured. He was supposed to expel the Romans! The people felt cheated and "taken" — they looked like fools, tricked by the carpenter from Nazareth. Their religious leaders were quick to take advantage by turning the fickle and indignant crowds against their former hero (Mark 15:10-11). It wasn't hard to do. Those same quiet people, who had sat patiently on the hillsides listening to Jesus for hours on end, had now been transformed into a bloodthirsty howling horde. Simple "loss of face" had galvanized individual human beings into a viciously rabid mob! Faces flushed with waves of frenzy when Pilate stated: " 'He has done nothing, you see, that calls for death...' But they all yelled as one man, 'Away with him!...' Again Pilate addressed them, for he wanted to release Jesus; but they roared, 'To the cross, to the cross with him...' [Pilate] spoke to them the third time... But they shouted him down, yelling their demand that he should be crucified, and their shouts carried the day" (Luke 23:15-23, Moffatt and Phillips). The God of Israel (YHVH) did much more than manifest Himself when He became Jesus Christ — He unveiled God the Father, His Own Master (Psalm 110:1), the Most High God (Gen. 14:18). Everyone who knew Christ knew the Father (John 14:9). Something else was also revealed. Something pretty important for us. Under the Old Covenant, YHVH promised the obedient an abundant physical life. And that's all. But now, in the "uncomely" form of Jesus Christ, YHVH disclosed THE Mystery of God (I Cor. 2:7). Christ revealed that human beings can inherit eternal life (I John 1:2; Matt. 25:46). And a quality of eternal life beyond the wildest dreams of any human mind. Jesus Christ revealed that we are literally to become God ourselves (John 10:34-35). That's right — read it again — God ourselves! The Eternal Creator of the universe — that's Jesus of Nazareth our elder brother — has proclaimed that we are now joint-heirs with Him as begotten Sons in God's Family (Rom. 8:17; I John 3:1-2)! What will we inherit with Christ? Christ has all things (Eph. 1:22). And so will we (Heb. 2:8)! All things! And so with the awesome majesty of God's greatest gifts still coursing through their craniums, humanity butchered the body of Jesus Christ. Here was God-hating human nature in the raw. The human race as a whole willfully murdered the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, who had sacrificed so much to share His Eternal Life with all men! The mangled mass of flesh and muscle which hung there limply on the stake was all that remained after God had "finally" given mankind the full revelation of Himself. Here was the complete presentation of YHVH — the God of the Patriarchs and Prophets; here was the first manifestation of YHVH'S Almighty Father — the Most High God; here was the overwhelming disclosure of man's individual purpose in life — to become God himself. Yet man mutilated Jesus Christ their Savior, killed YHVH their Creator, rejected God their Father. AND, INCREDIBLY, MAN CONTINUED TO ASK, "WHY DOES GOD HIDE HIMSELF?"
Christ Through the Centuries
Peter, John and the other apostles were set apart as God's true representatives by the enormous power which passed through them to perform miraculous healings (Acts 3:1-9; 5:12-16). The religious establishment never doubted the authenticity of these signs and wonders. But did they accept the presence of God? No sir! They feared for their own position — they didn't want to lose their own followers, their own adulators, and of course their own tithe-payers (Acts 4:16-18; 5:17-18). God was now working through the New Testament Church. But the religious leaders, true to form, acting as they always have and always will, cared more for "letters and learning" (Acts 4:13) than for the overt revelations of God. For the more than 1,938 years since Christ's death and resurrection, mankind has had access to Him through the Bible. (The Bible is the Word of God — and so is Christ, John 1:14) But what has man done with it? He has "interpreted" it — in a myriad of councils, conclaves, conferences and consistories. How? For his own convenience! No more laws, Sabbaths, Holy Days, tithing, prophecy, correction. Now even morality is "out of date." What's the purpose of these "Bible interpretations"? Very simple — muzzle the Bible and HIDE its God! For 18½ centuries, the True Church of God was a small persecuted group of outcasts who met in private houses and hired halls (Rom. 16:5; Col. 4:15; Acts 28:30). It was not a "respected" religio-political system, like "Organized Churchianity" which is really baptized paganism! If Jesus Christ began his physical ministry today, He would be accused of being the greatest threat to "God, Christianity and Patriotism"! He would be charged with treason and sedition by every country on earth — and His trial and "execution" would be festively celebrated around the world (probably on December 25)!
The Coming Revelation of God
"Ridiculous," Mr. Christian would say. "If God really appeared mankind would rejoice — not reject Him." This namby-pamby hypothesis will be exposed as a myth. Christ is soon going to return — and the world won't like it one bit. Because Christ will not return as a pleading preacher-boy. He will NOT make speeches at the United Nations, He will not appear on televised press conferences, and He will surely not lead protest marches. He won't "prove Himself" to scientists. He won't explain His behavior to psychologists. And He surely won't quibble and quarrel with theologians. No, Christ is going to rule this world with a rod of iron! (Rev. 2:27) The Book of Revelation tells the story. Curiously enough, the world looks on this book as a deliberate effort by God to "hide His mysteries." Nothing could be further from the truth. Read the name — Revelation! These 22 chapters spell out, in excruciating detail, the history of the world — before it happens. Here God reveals all — yet man claims it is "hidden in symbol." (Read our free booklet, The Book of Revelation Unveiled at Last!) Agnostic Arnold's "wish" (remember him?) will soon be granted — God will soon open Himself for all to see (Matt. 24:27). But humanity will respond just as it has always responded. Man will once again hide from his Creator. "And the kings of the earth, and the great men, and the rich men, and the chief captains, and the mighty men, and every bondman, and every free man, HID themselves in the dens and in the rocks of the mountains; And said to the mountains and rocks, Fall on us, and HIDE us from the face of him that sitteth on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb" (Rev. 6:15-16). But don't we read that all mankind will rejoice, make merry and even send gifts to one another at this time? Sure — that'll be when God's two witnesses are murdered! (Rev. 11:3; 7-10) And soon thereafter, when Christ takes over "the kingdoms of this world" (Rev. 11:15), the nations will be angry (verse 18) and men will blaspheme God (16:21). Do you catch the ironic drama of the situation? The same men, who had pompously proclaimed that they would "surely obey God if only He would stop hiding 'like a woman' and appear 'like a man,' " will themselves hide under rocks and blaspheme Him when He actually does appear like a God!
Why Does God Hide Himself?
He hasn't. He isn't. He won't. It's man who hides from God. God HAS revealed Himself — by His creation, by His patriarchs and prophets, and by the ministry of Jesus Christ. God IS revealing Himself — to scientists by their discoveries, and to the world by this Work. God WILL reveal Himself — to you personally by His Spirit now, and to all mankind by His soon-coming conquering return. But let's not forget poor old Agnostic Arnold — really a nice guy beneath his obnoxiously self-confident exterior. He has a rendezvous with the shock of his academically sheltered life. He will soon shed that pretense of "erudite sophistication." Arnie is going to repent. Hard to believe? Naturally — but nonetheless true. He can't even imagine the awesomely terrifying sequence of cataclysmic eruptions by which the Almighty Jesus Christ will conquer this world. Arnie's calloused, self-protecting emotions will be taxed beyond their limits — he will be shaken and whirled like a dried leaf in a tornado. Of course that'll be the best thing for him. Because at last he's going to become teachable — like a wide-eyed child hungry for basic knowledge. Don't worry — God hasn't been indignantly hurt or pridefully upset by Arnie's present buffoonery. This boy is just deceived — like the rest of the world (Rev. 12:9). God knows that. He loves Arnie even now (Rom. 5:8). So it's going to give God great pleasure to mercifully grant Arnold repentance (II Tim. 2:25). God can hardly wait to see the NEW, humbly repentant Arnie, sitting quietly and listening attentively as one of Jesus Christ's ministers begins to teach him the Way of Truth. There are thousands of millions of "Arnies" in today's world — everyone deceived in his own particular way. These helpless specks of frustrated life aren't "lost." God is getting ready to give each and every person his or her chance for eternal salvation. What a fantastic time to live! We are going to see the very unfolding and fulfillment of God's Plan!
The Ultimate Revelation
We have thrown at you a mass of historic and prophetic information. No doubt you believe our general thesis — that God has continuously revealed Himself to man but man has always hidden himself from God. But your belief is founded on secondhand data. It's right, it's good — but there's better! How would you like some firsthand evidence? Your Creator has provided a way — He can reveal Himself through you! He can literally dwell in you (I John 4:12) — Jesus Christ, the Creator of this universe, can come into your mind and flesh! (I John 4:2) How? By the implantation of His Holy Spirit (John 14:17) — which is God's Power to express Himself through you. God is offering a majesty which transcends even the most fertile imaginations. And you can have it! How do we know that God can reveal Himself through individual men? What's our evidence? We have an absolute two-fold proof: First, the person can keep God's Law for the first time. Of course God's Law will be kept! If God is going to manifest Himself through men, He is obviously going to obey His own Law! Second, the person can develop progressively more God like character. The phenomenally incomprehensible result of this development occurs at the resurrection — when, in truth and in fact, the person himself is changed into Eternal God! As wildly incredible as it surely sounds to our brainwashed ears, God Almighty is reproducing Himself. He is making man eligible for full-fledged Son-ship in His God-plane Family. That seems like sacrilegious blasphemy to worldly religions — but it happens to be the reason why God created the entire universe! The world teaches that man can't keep God's Ten Commandments. True. Man alone can't. But, when God impregnates and augments man's spirit by His Holy Spirit (Rom. 8:16), then man can fully obey God's Law because Christ Himself will help. The world hates obeying God and the world ridicules the idea of God reproducing Himself. As a result the world rejects God's revelation through man. And by rejecting God's revelation, the world blasphemes God's Holy Spirit. Religionists tell you "just believe on the name of the Lord Jesus and you shall be saved." They also make the equally ludicrous claim that the Holy Spirit is a distinct person! This is a flagrant attempt to both close off the Godhead in an unexpandable "Trinity" and deny God's power to keep His own Law through human beings. How do you know that God can reveal Himself through men? You can't stake your belief on these words stuck end to end. So prove it! Prove it by trying it! There is no other way. You must personally experience the enormous benefits of God's Spirit. And we don't mean some pseudo-sanctimonious hodge-podge of self-deluded emotion, nicey-nice prayer meetings and goody-good testimonials. We do mean God's breathtaking Purpose in life — and His specific office of scintillating authority prepared especially for you. Let's get down to business. How do you get God's Holy Spirit? There are just two requirements: 1) A wholly repentant attitude of mind and 2) baptism. That's it (Acts 2:38). How do you know if you are repentant? How do you get baptized? Where are God's ministers? We can answer your questions. The Graduate School of Theology of Ambassador College has sent dedicated men into most communities in the United States and the British Commonwealth, and into many other cities around the world. These sincere individuals have no religious "ax to grind," no "quota" to meet, no pressure to exert. Their sole purpose in life is to help you gain eternal life. If God has granted YOU the capacity to catch the vision, if you have questions which you want answered, write to us and request a special, private appointment. Give us the pleasure of serving you. We'd love to. Of all God's revelations to man, the clearest and most dramatic for you will occur when you personally sense the remarkably thrilling change in your own mind brought about by God's Holy Spirit — a steady perfection of your character, a new power in your understanding, a sudden zest in your life, and a fantastically happy outlook for your future. You will never again have to rehearse the many times, places and ways of God's revelations to mankind. When you want to see God revealing Himself, you'll just look at God's Power in your own life!