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      In this article, we are looking at the reasoning of man in his sinfulness and how his judgements about life agree with the judgements of God. Are we doing God a favor when we reject Him?


      The first reaction of Adam and Eve when they sinned against God was to hide from Him: “Then the man and his wife heard the sound of the Lord God as he was walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and they hid from the Lord God among the trees of the garden.  But the Lord God called to the man, “Where are you?” He answered, “I heard you in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; so, I hid” (Gen 3:8-10, NIV).

      The Bible says that they were afraid thus they hid. This is something we do relate to in our day-to-day life. When we are doing well with our parents or friends, we are free with them and feel open to them. But when we do them wrong, the first response is to avoid them or trying to hide from them so that they do not know what you have done because you know the consequences of the act may not be good. The judgment we do place on ourselves though we do not ponder on it shows exactly that such actions which we have done fit to put us away from the relationship we once enjoyed.

      When we meet God’s goodness in our sinfulness, we usually judge ourselves as fit for death and separation for Him. The following reactions show how we do this:


      a) In other instances, we tend to fear and seek God to be far from us because we are not worthy of such goodness of God. We learn this from Peter when Jesus performed a miracle of multiplying fish: “When Simon Peter saw this, he fell at Jesus’ knees and said, “Go away from me, Lord; I am a sinful man! (Luke 5:8, NIV)”. Of which Peter was right to see himself that way before Christ. What are we if not people that are not worthy of Jesus’ visitation and blessings?

Self-justification by blaming God 

       b) In other instances, we act like Adam and Eve with an attitude of blaming God. In this instance, one seeks to be right by putting the wrong action on someone else and it’s either God and His purposes or someone else: Adam says, “the woman you gave me…” Eve says, “Satan caused me to….” And we say, “If the tree was not there…” We tend to ask questions such as: why did God create us if He knew that we are going to sin against Him and then condemn us? Now, I am not saying that this question cannot be asked in good manner with a motive of seeking a better knowledge about God. However, the same question is asked often with an attitude of blaming God for either putting the tree as the cause of man’s fall or Him creating the world where we would fall. This is the one we are dealing with here. This reaction shows arrogance, the other one we mentioned earlier in point a of Peter shows humility, however, both of them have one thing in common: they do recognize that life is not found among those who sin against God

       Let us examine the second thought (b) well. When we ask the question “why did God create us in the first place if He knew…?” What we are doing is that we are ascribing wrong thinking to God as result we see it not fit for God ordain such actions so sinful to face His Justice. At the core of our question of God’s purposes is a hatred for justice. Because God is just toward us, we feel, God would have done better if He did not create a world like this one where He knew we would sin against Him. By blaming God, we think that we can be worthy of life but in actual sense we are proving that we are not worthy of life thus why we seek to blame God so that He may leave us alone and continue to live..

Self-justification by working out one’s own righteousness

       c) In other instances, we try to work out righteousness by doing good things as if God accept such work as the means of justification. Though what we call good, to God is just filthy rags: “All of us have become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous acts are like filthy rags; we all shrivel up like a leaf, and like the wind our sins sweep us away (Isaiah 64:6, NIV).” We also agree with the judgments of God in those doings that those who sin against God are not worthy of life thus we work to try to be worthy of that life from God (Romans 10:3).


      It is clear that in our rejection of God’s justice that we agree with God that life is not something we deserve thus why we seek other ways to continue living rather than through righteousness. Because we are not righteous, we run away from all knowledge of God agreeing with God that even more far from Him we should be because that is what we deserve.

Rom 3:10-18

“There is no one righteous, not even one; 11 there is no one who understands,
no one who seeks God. 12 All have turned away, they have together become worthless; there is no one who does good, not even one.” 13 “Their throats are open graves; their tongues practice deceit.”  “The poison of vipers is on their lips.”  14 “Their mouths are full of cursing and bitterness.”15 “Their feet are swift to shed blood; 16 ruin and misery mark their ways, 17 and the way of peace they do not know.”  18 “There is no fear of God before their eyes.”

      For this reason, the lake of fire which is the second death demonstrate how far we are to be from God that is eternally far from God. Let us not think that when we run away from God or reject His gospel that we are doing Him a favor, no! We are just condemning ourselves and judge ourselves not worthy of life of which we are. Paul and Barnabas in acts 13:46 said boldly to those Jews in Pisidian Antioch who rejected the gospel, “We had to speak the word of God to you first. Since you reject it and do not consider yourselves worthy of eternal life, we now turn to the Gentiles.”

      Tony Miano in His article, “the unbeliever judges himself unworthy” comment on the same passage of acts 13:46 and says, “Unbelievers, by their unbelief, by their conduct toward and rejection of the gospel, condemn themselves. When the unbeliever sees himself as too good for the gospel and not needing or wanting salvation through faith in Jesus Christ, his rejection of the gospel is a theological declaration that he is unworthy of eternal life. The unbeliever doesn’t realize he’s doing this. Again, he believes himself to be above the need for salvation. ‘Most men will proclaim everyone his own goodness: but a faithful man who can find’ (Proverbs 20:6, KJV).”[1]


       When we speak this way what we often have in mind is the love of God, the mercy of God, etc. We have no problem with that. When it comes to His justice there is a red flag raised and questions are flooded toward God. We forget that the same God who is loving is also just and His goodness is found in EVERYTHING THAT HE IS even in His justice. So, when God judges us because of sin, He is displaying His goodness the same way He would save us from our sins. Thus, why salvation in Christ is not given until the Character of God is vindicated in Christ. His mercy is not so so good that it surpasses His justice, no! EVERYTHING ABOUT GOD IS GOOD AND RIGHTEOUS. Therefore, we do not need to grade the character of God as if God is divided within Himself. So, let it be known among the living that God ordained all things to face His goodness. And the manifold of this goodness is seen in both His redemption for those who believe in Christ and Justice to those who do not believe. Creation was meant to display the glory of God. Thus, why the Bible says that “all things were made by Him and for Him (Col 1:16).” His justice is good and when sin is judged we cannot tell God to change His nature so that we may live the way we want in rebellion. We cannot blame God for our wrong doings. “Let God be true and man a liar (Romans 3:4).” Just because we ended up sinning against God, it does not mean that the purposes of God are at fault in the first place.


      This we should know, therefore, the purposes which God made us for are not the problem, we are the problem. It is us who have sinned against God. And in our sins that we come to know that God is our enemy. Because of our sins, we see not the purposes of God as giving us life and thus, we question why God created this world which turned out this way. Instead of questioning the purposes of God as if He is at fault, we are to recognize our wrong doing and know that God is right in making us the people who can freely love Him and others with our freedom guided by righteousness of God in which life is found. And when we sin, we are supposed to face that justice of God. It is when we understand this situation of facing God’s justice that we can see the need for a Savior.


      First of all, life is from God. He is the one who gives life to all the living for He is the creator of all things (1 Tim 6:13). Redemptively He gives eternal life to those found in Christ (John 14:19).  So, to truly live is to be found in God.  And to be found in God one has to be righteous. How then can a sinner be righteous before God and be found in Him so that He may have life? To those to whom the law is given the Bible says, “For we maintain that a man is justified by faith apart from observing the law (Rom 3:28, NIV).” To those without the law, the Bible says, “Is God the God of Jews only? Is he not the God of Gentiles too? Yes, of Gentiles too, since there is only one God, who will justify the circumcised by faith and the uncircumcised through that same faith (Rom 3:29-31, NIV).”

So, it is clear from the Bible that for one to live justified that is having the righteousness which allows one to live forever with God, one has to believe in Christ from whom that righteousness is found. So, the Bible connect life with righteousness and death with sin. And this life is found in God. For God is truly life. He is what we need to know about living. Thus, why separation from God is death.

      So, if we are to test the mind of the redeemed, will find that no one would say to the Holy One of Israel, “why did you make me this way that I should enjoy the fullness of your goodness? please take my life!” That thought would not be there but gratefulness. Even though it is found among the children of God that they ask sometimes why God is so good to them, it is not a question that draws them to despair of life but of wonder of His goodness and causing them to praise God.

The children of God live because of the righteousness of Jesus Christ given to them by faith. So, life is found with righteousness and not with wickedness and the reasoning in both is different: in wickedness, men blame God, seek their way to God, reject God etc. While in righteousness, the redeemed praise God, understand that God is good and His ways and purposes are all together good. They understand that they are the problem and God is right and the only way to be right with Him is to believe in Christ who suffered for them on the cross.


       It took the workings of God, to bring light into the darkness, to bring life where there is no life by sending Christ to die for us and the Holy Spirit to apply that work of Christ in our lives by faith, so that instead of running away from God, we come close to God through Christ Jesus our Lord. So, we come close to God because HE first came close to us. Because of what God did, we learn that there is a way we can be in a relationship with God and the sentence of death can be removed on us. For God has looked upon those in the shadow of death with favor. If it were not for God coming close to us, we would not have life eternal. We recognize the grace of God and how His justice is displayed in Christ. If we were the first one to seek God, we would have something to boast about but none of us was found doing so and the Scripture bears witness to that truth.

So here is the point to keep in mind, regardless of how our rebellion looks, we judge ourselves not worthy of life when we reject God and His blessings on us and when we do that, we should not think that we are doing God a favor but we are actually agreeing with His judgement which declares us condemned and deserve hell.


[1] Tony Miano, “The unbeliever judges himself unworthy,” accessed October 12, 2021, https://crossencountersmin.com/featured-article/evangelism-tactics-unbeliever-judges-unowrthy/.

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