Why does God seem so distant? Does the Bible say I am a sinner?

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For many people, God seems distant, far away, and almost unreal. This seems opposite from the Bible’s claim that God loves us and wants a relationship with us. If the Bible is the truth, why does reality feel so different?

The Bible itself holds the answer to this question. As much as God loves us, there is something that separates us from having a relationship with him. It is our sin. God is so perfect and holy that sin can’t exist in his presence. It’s just destroyed. And since we are naturally full of sin, in the presence of God, we are destroyed along with it. Sin is the barrier between us and God. It keeps us apart and distant from him. But there is hope. God knew this and made a way for us to know him.

No one wants to be labeled a sinner or condemned for their actions. It makes us feel bad about ourselves or it makes us fear that others won’t approve of us. But we all know that no one is perfect. Everyone makes mistakes and we each do things that hurt other people or ourselves. So why is it so hard to admit we sin? What does the Bible say? Are we sinners? Does God love us anyway?

Does the Bible say sin separates us from God?


Isaiah 59:2 – “But your iniquities have separated you from your God; your sins have hidden his face from you, so that he will not hear”

Isaiah 64:7 – “No one calls on your name or strives to lay hold of you; for you have hidden your face from us and made us waste away because of our sins.

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Don't be quick to convict me for posting this song. The questions Black Sabbath asks in their song are reflected in the hearts and minds of many in our culture. They look at the world around us, see the evil, feel the emptiness, the guilt, and wonder "Is God dead"?

Can we say that our lives reflect that he's alive? Do we reflect his love & forgiveness or his judgment?

Does the Bible say we all sin?

The Old Testament


King Solomon was recognized as the wisest man who ever lived. People would come from all over the known world to hear his wisdom. One of his greatest achievements was building the Temple for the LORD in Jerusalem. When he prayed to God about the people as he was dedicating the temple, he said “When they sin against you-for there is no one who does not sin” -1 Kings 8:46

In Proverbs 20:19 he asks – “Who can say, “I have kept my heart pure; I am clean and without sin”?

In Ecclesiastes he answers- “There is not a righteous man on earth who does what is right and never sins.” Ecclesiastes 7:20

His father, King David, also recognized that we are all sinners.

Psalm 14:3 & Psalm 53:3 – “All have turned aside, they have together become corrupt; there is no one who does good, not even one”

Psalm 130:3 – “If you, O LORD, kept a record of sins, O Lord, who could stand? But with you there is forgiveness; therefore you are feared.”

The New Testament


In his letter back to Rome, Paul explains the purpose of the law and how faith in Jesus Christ brings a righteousness from God that is available to all who believe, clarifies that:

Romans 3:23 – “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.”

Again, while explaining the source and punishment for sin, he says

Romans 5:12b – “in this way death came to all men, because all sinned.”

As he writes about the purpose of the law and emphasizes that it cannot save, he exclaims:

Galatians 3:22-“But the scripture declares that the whole world is a prisoner of sin, so that what was promised, being given through faith in Jesus Christ, might be given to those who believe.”

Even John, who knew Jesus best, warns:

1 John 1:8 – “If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us.”

So does God love us even though we sin?


Romans 5:8 – But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”

Ephesians 2:4 – “But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions (sins) – it is by grace you have been saved.”

To demonstrate his love for us, Christ died for us, paying the penalty for our sins so we could be forgiven and have a relationship with God.

John 15:13 – “Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.”

1 John 3:6 – “This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us.”

.

Yes God loves us even though we are sinners, but this does not make sinning ok. The Bible also says that God hates sin. there are even places where it says he hates those who continue in sin, never repenting and continually hurt those around them. It may be fun at the time, but the consequences are painful. It keeps us from having a relationship with him. It causes us to hurt others and get hurt ourselves. It cost Jesus his life. It costs us our lives. But God offers a solution. Jesus Christ came and paid the cost of our sin on the cross. His death covers our sin and makes us clean in God’s eyes. When we repent of our sin and accept his death in place of our own, we are forgiven. This removes the barrier between us and God and we are able to have a close relationship with him. Then he is no longer distant.

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Comments 18 comments

newenglandsun 3 years ago

Ozzy Osbourne is hot (for a 60+ year old man). More like Geriatric Sabbath now although Iommi still has sick riffs. Black Sabbath always poses esoteric questions and philosophies into their songs. Their song "The Devil Cried" for instance, talks about a story about a man who sought to make the Devil cry and the only way he could do so was by loving. Their song "Heaven and Hell" is also very esoteric.

Any way, sin does not separate us or make us distant. At least, not if one examines the Bible closely.

Matthew 21:31-32 - "Which of the two did what his father wanted?" "The first," they answered. Jesus said to them, "I tell you the truth, the tax collectors and the prostitutes are entering the kingdom of God ahead of you. For John came to you to show you the way of righteousness, and you did not believe him, but the tax collectors and the prostitutes did. And even after you saw this, you did not repent and believe him.

Which proves also that Paul was not entirely in harmony with what Jesus taught (1 Cor. 6:9-10).


April Reynolds profile image

April Reynolds 3 years ago from Arizona Author

hi newengland, I hoped you would like the song. Yes, they are old, but so am I.

I think the point Matthew was making was that the tax collectors and the prostitutes knew they were sinners and were willing to believe in Jesus and repent as John told them. The religious leaders were not willing to admit that they were sinners too and wouldn't repent.

When we repent and accept that Jesus died for our sins so that we don't have to pay the penalty, then, yes you are right, we are forgiven and our sins don't separate us from God anymore.

I know you wrote more over on the other hub and I'll get to it when I can. I spent waaaay too much time in doctors office yesterday and didn't get everything done I needed to.


newenglandsun 3 years ago

About penal substitutionary atonement...

http://www.patheos.com/blogs/exploringourmatrix/20...


Rayne123 3 years ago

Great hub.

I myself having a close relationship with God, may I add that God is just and merciful. He will always forgive sin, however like the story with "saul" he will never allow those guilty to go unpunished ever.

There is one sin never forgiven ever and that is blasphemy of the Holy spirit by anyone on this face of the earth.

I do not know why anyone would do that, I feel sorry for God when I see that happening. Its almost like they laugh right in his face, however he who laughs first laughs last.

We have to accept that God is justified in anything he does and he does not set out with his plans and than say oh no I wasn't expecting someone to overpower me or do that. God is never wrong nor is he over powered.

All your hubs are great April

I also hope you are feeling ok today and I still believe what is wrong with you is nothing serious and I do pray for you

God bless

Laurie


BLACKANDGOLDJACK profile image

BLACKANDGOLDJACK 3 years ago from Blitzburgh area

Hello, April.

newenglandsun posted the link for this hub of yours on my hub about homosexuality yesterday.

I like your last paragraph so much I just put it in a comment on my hub.

I don't know what part of that paragraph newenglandsun doesn't understand.


April Reynolds profile image

April Reynolds 3 years ago from Arizona Author

Thank you BlackandGold, I am honored. I'm glad it was clear.

Ah Newengland, I can't wait to see what you said about me. I will have to find some time to go see later today.

Have an awesome day gentlemen!


newenglandsun 3 years ago

No. The patheos link is from James McGrath's blog. I am not James McGrath although I do plan to be a college professor in religion some day.


BLACKANDGOLDJACK profile image

BLACKANDGOLDJACK 3 years ago from Blitzburgh area

Thank you, April. You are so sweet.

newenglandsun isn't a gentleman. I'm not even sure that he's a man after what he posted today on some hub about us all being "its." So I guess you better get with "it" then, April.

What I do know for sure is that newenglandsun is a bisexual atheistic Luciferian who writes porn. Really.

But hey, April, you told him what he needs to do about all this to be right with God. I'm not holding my breath.


newenglandsun 3 years ago

Galatains 3:28 - There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus. (RSV)

That's not ME who said we were all "its" that was PAUL.


Rayne123 3 years ago

HI April, I have to be honest for some strange reason I missed the last paragraph and yes you hit it right on.

This is my fav part

"The Bible also says that God hates sin. there are even places where it says he hates those who continue in sin, never repenting and continually hurt those around them. It may be fun at the time, but the consequences are painful. It keeps us from having a relationship with him. It causes us to hurt others and get hurt ourselves."

So true and a sign to what is happening now.

Thank you

Hope you are feeling a bit better today

God bless

Laurie


Rayne123 3 years ago

Well this guest user "newenglandsun" started on my blogs a few weeks ago.

He started off rude and I tried to answer him nicely. He even commented to my bio where I state oh good ole Canada winter wonderland. He came back with something like oh I have to disagree I think where I live is the winters wonderland.

Ok so I was not competing against a country nor do I know where he lives or what the winters are like, it was just a metaphor.

Then he proceeded to follow me on Aprils hubs and made a comment that she had to delete. He then started asking questions to April and that is how this all came to be.

she has been nothing but nice to him and has been answering his questions best she knew how with kindness and love, like the Holy spirit instructed her. Not to mention she is not feeling so well.

So all I have to say is very simple, God loves everyone the same, and if you do not believe in God, you will still suffer the consequences of your sins no matter who you are "newenglandsun" we all do.

So you have your right to believe in anything you want, however there is no excuse to have never heard about God, so if punishment is upon you, one cannot say, why should I receive punishment I did not believe in God.

Its very simple and to the point.

God gave him free will and he can live his life the way he wants, but to attack anyone else is wrong and one day soon it will come back his way.

Anyway sorry April , hope that was ok

once again hope you are feeling better


Lady Guinevere profile image

Lady Guinevere 3 years ago from West Virginia

Mat 5: 43 `Ye heard that it was said: Thou shalt love thy neighbor, and shalt hate thine enemy;

44 but I -- I say to you, Love your enemies, bless those cursing you, do good to those hating you, and pray for those accusing you falsely, and persecuting you,

45 that ye may be sons of your Father in the heavens, because His sun He doth cause to rise on evil and good, and He doth send rain on righteous and unrighteous.

46 `For, if ye may love those loving you, what reward have ye? do not also the tax-gatherers the same?

47 and if ye may salute your brethren only, what do ye abundant? do not also the tax-gatherers so?

48 ye shall therefore be perfect, as your Father who [is] in the heavens is perfect.

AND

Psalms 103:8 Merciful and gracious [is] Jehovah, Slow to anger, and abundant in mercy.

9 Not for ever doth He strive, Nor to the age doth He watch.

10 Not according to our sins hath He done to us, Nor according to our iniquities Hath He conferred benefits upon us.

11 For, as the height of the heavens [is] above the earth, His kindness hath been mighty over those fearing Him.

12 As the distance of east from west He hath put far from us our transgressions.


BLACKANDGOLDJACK profile image

BLACKANDGOLDJACK 3 years ago from Blitzburgh area

newenglandsun is into stalking Christians who write hubs and posting mindless drivel to cause confusion. God is not the author of confusion.

He posted a link to some porn he wrote on my hub that I had to delete because it violated HubPages TOS, among other things.


newenglandsun 3 years ago

April and I go back quite a while.

http://hubpages.com/religion-philosophy/Acts-2-The...

Long before I heard of you guys.

And most of these comments are actually a little non-sequitor to be perfectly honest.


newenglandsun 3 years ago

The point of this hub was to address all of our sinful behaviours. So are we all going to judge a non-believer just because he is a wicked non-believer? I have a new question now. Why are Christians so intolerant of people who believe differently than they do? Are they against diversity or something? If I were to become a Christian, then would I have to forsake diversity and tell people that they should all be the same? Is Christianity meaningful or is it meaningless?


newenglandsun 3 years ago

Blackandgoldjack,

That is a disgusting and revolting offensive statement and I refuse to answer it and will not answer it.


April Reynolds profile image

April Reynolds 3 years ago from Arizona Author

good evening gentlemen, please go fight somewhere else. I request people treat each other respectfully if they want to comment on my hubs. I want this to be a safe place for anyone. Thank you.

I'm deleting the part about the dog. and the one after that since it won't make sense anymore


newenglandsun 3 years ago

It's not that he hates those who sin, it's just that he loves them less.

http://www.mercifultruth.com/doesgodhate.html

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