This is it until after new years. At that time I will answer Anonymous's comments on the problem pain and free will. Until then have a Merry Christmas!
this is by a friend on carm. I thought it had some good features and is interesting. So it's a guest spot.
God doesn’t hide from man, but man hides himself from God in and with his own unbelief. There's nothing to hide in and from the truth, God didn't make us to hide from us, but he is known to us through and in how everything else we know exists and is known to us, through our own personal first person belief.
God desires to know whoever does believe the truth; do you desire to know God? If not, is it then a mystery to you that you don’t know him? Stop pretending that you don’t know that you have to believe first before anything is known; as you can’t know without first believing.
God is made known to us in the truth we believe in and about Him, but if you disbelieve he exists, then the reason you don’t know God is because you don’t believe he exists, it’s that simple; as no-one in their own unbelief is able to know the truth of something's existence in the first place.
What is it that we can know without first believing it, as we gain all the knowledge we have through belief.
And it’s premature of anyone to say that “God doesn’t exist” before they have themselves done what is required of them to know God or anything to exist in the first place, as no knowledge of anything is available to anyone in the midst of their own unbelief and this is without exception. All what we know; we know through and by the psychological act of belief and in no other way do we know of anything without this mental act upon what it is that we first must believe to exist before we are able to gain any knowledge of what is believed to exist. Believe the truth, for through and by this is the knowledge of God known.
The Epistle of John and through John’s words in which he believed and wrote in and of the truth he knew in the same way John knew Jesus, and Jesus did love John.
In the Beginning (Christ) was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God; this one was in the beginning with God; all things through him did happen, and without him happened not even one thing that has happened. In him was life, and the life was the light of men, and the light in the darkness did shine, and the darkness did not perceive it. He was the true Light, which does enlighten every man, coming to the world; in the world he was, and the world through him was made, and the world did not know him: to his own things he came, and his own people did not receive him; but as many as did receive him in belief to them he gave authority to become sons of God -- to those believing in his name; that He is truth itself, who -- not of blood nor of a will of flesh, as not through the senses, nor of a will of man but -- of God were begotten through belief, through the truth believed. And the Word in truth became flesh, and did tabernacle among us, and we realize His glory in this, realized as of an only begotten of a father, full of grace and truth. John the Baptist does testify concerning him, and has cried, saying, `This was he of whom I said, He who after me is coming, has come before me, for he was before me;' and out of his fullness believed in us did we all receive, and grace over-against grace; for the law through Moses was given, the grace and the truth through Jesus Christ did come; God no one hath ever seen; the only begotten Son, who is on the bosom of the Father -- he did declare.
For every one who is doing wicked things hates the light of the truth, and does not come to the light, that his works may not be detected; but he who is doing the truth does come to the light, that his works may be manifested, that in God they are having been created.'
After these things came Jesus and his disciples to the land of Judea, and there he did tarry with them, and was baptizing; ye worship what ye have not known; we worship what we have known, because the salvation is of the Jews; but, there cometh an hour, and it now is, when the true worshippers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father also does seek such to worship him; God [is] a Spirit, and those worshipping Him, in spirit and truth are we to worship.' Another there is who is testifying concerning me, and I have known that the testimony that he does testify concerning me is true; you have sent unto John, and he has testified to the truth. `But I do not receive testimony from man, but these things I say that you may be saved; Jesus, therefore, said unto the Jews who believed in him, `If you may remain in my word, truly my disciples you are, and you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.'
Wherefore if you do not know my speech? because you are not able to hear my word of truth. `Ye are of a father -- the devil, and the desires of your father ye will to do; he was a man-slayer from the beginning, and in the truth he has not stood, because there is no truth in him; when one may speak the falsehood, of his own he speaks, because he is a liar -- also his father. `And because I say the truth, you do not believe me. Who of you does convict me of sin? and if I speak truth, wherefore do you not believe me?
Thomas saith to him, `Sir, we have not known to what place do you go away, and how are we able to know the way?' Jesus saith to him, `I am the way, and the truth, and the life, no one does come unto the Father, if not through me; if you had known me, my Father also you would have known, and from this time you have known Him, and have seen Him.'
And I will ask the Father, and another Comforter He will give to you, that he may remain with you -- to the age; the Spirit of truth, whom the world is not able to receive, because it does not believe him, nor know him, and you know him, because he does remain with you, and shall be in you. `I will not leave you without, I come unto you; but -- that the word may be fulfilled that was written in their law -- They hated me without a cause. `And when the Comforter may come, whom I will send to you from the Father -- the Spirit of truth, who from the Father does come forth, he will testify of me; and you also do testify, because from and in a beginning you are with me from the day you first believed the truth.
But because these things I have said to you, the sorrow hath filled your heart. `But I tell you the truth; it is better for you that I go away, for if I may not go away, the Comforter will not come unto you, and if I go on, I will send Him unto you; and having come, He will convict the world concerning sin, and concerning righteousness, and concerning judgment; `I have yet many things to say to you, but you are not able to bear [them] now; and when He may come -- the Spirit of truth -- He will guide you to all the truth, for He will not speak from Himself, but as many things as He will hear He will speak, and the coming things He will make you know and understand in what you believe; He will glorify the truth, because of only truth He will take, and will tell to you and you will recognize the truth as is the same in you.
`Of the world they are not, as I of the world am not; sanctify them in Thy truth, Your word is truth; as You did send me to the world, I also did send them to the world; and for them do I sanctify myself, that they also themselves may be sanctified in the self-evidence of the truth. `And not in regard to these alone do I ask, but also in regard to those who shall be believing, through their word, in me;
Jesus answered, `My kingdom is not of this world; if my kingdom were of this world, my officers had struggled that I might not be delivered up to Jews; but now my kingdom is not from hence.' Pilate, therefore, said to him, `Art thou then a king?' Jesus answered, `Thou dost say [it]; because a king I am, I for this have been born, and for this I have come to the world, that I may testify to the truth; every one who is of the truth, does hear my voice.' Pilate saith to him, `What is truth?' and this having said, again he went forth unto the Jews, and saith to them, `I do find no fault in him;