Why is God hiding?
Many of the most difficult questions about Christian faith would be easily answered if God were only here - and now.
Q: "Is there a God, and if so, who is he, Jesus or Allah or Buddha?"
A: 'Yes, there is a God. He lives in apartment A-777. Let’s go over right now, and I’ll introduce you – trust me, it’s Jesus.'
Q: "And what about the problem of evil and pain and bad things happening to good people? "
A: 'Oh, don’t worry about that, just let God know what the problem is and He’ll take care of it. '
It’s hard to think of a problem that wouldn’t be better if God were here.'
But He isn’t.
But it’s for our own good.
Exodus 33 makes me think that one reason God isn’t here is out of mercy toward us. At this point in Exodus, God has delivered the people from Egypt, fed, clothed and protected them in the desert, and even given them His word written in stone (which Moses dropped and broke). And in return, Israel has griped against God and his servants, disobeyed Him, and even worshipped a golden idol in His stead. So God says that he is going to send Israel up into the Promised Land, but that He’s not going with them. He will send an angel with them to lead them, but God Himself will not go. Why? Because, God says “You are a stiff-necked people. If I were to go with you even for a moment, I might destroy you…” He goes on to tell Moses that if anyone were to see His face, he would die.
So the problem is that God is too holy to be around sinful people. His holiness might cause him to kill them. This sounds harsh, but it’s actually spoken in mercy. If God wanted to kill the Israelites, He could have done so. But He didn’t want to kill them; He loved them and wanted them to live.
And so perhaps this is the case with us nowadays as well? The kind and degree of sin in our world is certainly as bad as anything the Israelites did. So if God were here, it would pose a grave danger to human life. His presence might mean the death of many people. So instead, perhaps God refrains from breaking into our troubled world because He loves us, has mercy on us, and wants us to live in repentance instead of die in rebellion.
 Ex. 33:5.
 Ex. 33:20.