TRUHT FOR TODAY - BIBLICAL ESSAYS BY PASTOR PAUL MIZZI

Godís knowledge of our sin

There is a problem associated with the fact that God cannot look upon sin, yet He knows the sins of men and is not defiled by them.

God cannot look upon sin, in the sense that He cannot, because of his pure nature, approve of it in any way. He ever and always abhors it, for it is an attack upon Him, a denial of his sovereignty, a rebellion against his good, righteous and holy law, which he must maintain and promote. It is in this context that the prophet spoke and appealed to God as follows: "Thou art of purer eyes than to behold evil, and canst not look upon iniquity: wherefore lookest thou upon them that deal treacherously, and holdest thy tongue when the wicked devoureth the man that is more righteous than he?" (Habakkuk 1:13). The prophet's dilemma arose out of his knowledge that (1) God is always holy; and yet (2) He seems to be approving the Chaldeans' wickedness in besieging the Jews. How can this be? The answer given is that the righteous will live by faith, and come what may, the believer can trust God to do what seems right in his own eyes, according to his infinite wisdom and holiness. The believer thus will confess that though harm will come, "Yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will joy in the God of my salvation..." (Habakkuk 3:18).

So God is never a worker of evil (perish the thought!) and much less the author of it, as so often we hear cavillers protesting against God's sovereignty over all things and all creatures by concluding that God must be the author of evil if He is over all. But this is not the case, for the same Scriptures stress that God is the Holy One, and though He knows all about evil and wickedness (since He has decreed it to happen) He is not in any way tainted with it. He dwells in unapproachable light. He is Light, and in him is no darkness at all: darkness in the sense of error (intellectual) and sin (moral).

God cannot look upon sin: this is the outcome of his holiness. His stand against sin is always the same: he abhors it and is moved to wrath against it. "For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men who hold the truth in unrighteousness" (Romans 1:18).

In addition, he knows the sins of men for being infinite in knowledge, He knows all our misdeeds, pernicious thoughts, and vain words. The day will come when the books will be opened and judgement will be rendered to each one according to his works.