004 Why Does God Hide? [Podcast]

Why is God invisible? Why doesn’t he ‘appear’ in front of us? Even when he does appear, as he did plenty of times to the Israelites, he comes disguised as a pillar of cloud, a whisper, or a burning bush. Even Jesus – God in human form – wasn’t instantly recognisable after his resurrection. Why is so God hidden?

In short, God hides so we will seek him. He scatters a trail of breadcrumbs, enticing us to discover who scattered them.

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In the Talk

In this talk, given at Oxford Community Church earlier this month, I draw from the stories of Mary Magdalene, Cleopas, Peter and Thomas who all have Jesus appear to them after his resurrection. Through them I explore:

  • The two great questions of the scepticWhy does God remain hidden? (‘If God would just appear in front of me, then I would believe’), and If God is good, why is there suffering? (‘If he wants to stop it but can’t, he’s not powerful. If he can but won’t, he’s not good.’)
  • The fact that these are not just the questions of the sceptic, but often of the believer who is experiencing life’s ‘shadows’ – prolonged seasons of grief, disappointment, shame or doubt.
  • A surprising twist to these questions. God’s hiddenness and our suffering turn out to be the very ways in which God reveals himself to us. 

Special Announcements

  1. My next book Resurrection Year is out in just 6 weeks! Thank you to those who have already pre-ordered it. If we’re Facebook friends you would know that Merryn and I are planning something special for the May 28 launch. Make sure you’re on my email list to take part when it happens!
  2. The More Than This podcast is now available on ZuneStitcherTunedInBlackberry PodcastsFaithVillage and other podcast apps and websites.

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Question: How have you experienced God in life’s ‘shadows’? Leave a comment now.

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