Since God can do anything, why doesn’t he reveal himself to each of us directly, face-to-face, so that it would be crystal clear who he is and what he expects of us?
since that would defeat the whole purpose of faith. Remember the story of Doubting Thomas.
I had a special experience almost two years ago to the day. Even though I feel God revealed something to me, He still left me with choices. I see Gods work daily now, but there is always a choice to make. Its infinite. He wants us to choose Him on faith , no matter how much He reveals to us. I read even in heaven, we will marvel every moment, that everything is new for eternity. Tim
Maybe not face-to face, but IMO He does reveal Himself to us as individuals. At least, He is revealing Himself to me constantly.
Think of it this way:
We are created in God’s image. Among other things, that means he endowed us with free will, which we are utterly and completely (within the bounds of physics) capable of using as we see fit.
God desires that we love him as he loves us. He does not love us because he must; he created us as an act of his will, and did so out of love.
If God revealed himself to us personally, it would seem that our “love” would be more like caving in. How could we use our intellect to make a rational choice between God’s desires and our own?
Thus, we are given his Truth, and we spend our lives choosing it (and, therefore, God) – or not.
I thought it would be nice if God would just talk to me. But, to be honest, If God appeared to me like he appeared to Moses, or St. Paul, or even to any of the saints, I would be honored yet scared. Have you actually seen what there lives have been like after God talks to them? It’s not a walk in the park.
Please don’t think that I am dissing self sacrifice for God. I just want people would think about what they say whenever they’re upset that God doesn’t talk to them.
Thanks for the responses … my wife mentioned that He did reveal himself to people face-to-face when he was on earth, and people still rejected him.
I would say that God likes mediation. By this I mean that he wants us to pray for one another rather than just ourselves, he wants us to pray to saints rather than “directly to him,” and he wants us to come to know him through the visible Church. It allows his creatures to share in his work. If God simply revealed himself in a visible and immediate way to each person, then it would not let other people share in his work of evangelizing, which was a command he gave the apostles.
Also, the fact that God is hidden increases our desire for him.
Also, since God is a spirit, any “immediate vision” of him in this life would not really be a vision of him at all. Of course, he did become man to reveal himself fully in a way that we could understand, but Christ had to suffer and die to accomplish his mission, and he had to ascend into Heaven again to send the Holy Spirit.
It’s better this way.
I have struggled with same question. I attempt to answer it to myself (hmmm, that doesn’t sound to sane) the following way:
If God revealed Himself to us in some manner of which we were left with virtually no doubt we would likely turn from ourselves and live in complete accordance with His will. We would never know if we would have chosen good over evil by way of our own free will.
A (probably poor) analogy: If you saw an elderly or handicapped person attempting to cross a busy street and immediately someone said to you, “I’ll pay you 1 million dollars to assist them across the street”, you might never know if you would have chosen to assist them on your own (assuming you took the 1 million dollars). As I said, probably a poor analogy.
The question further begs the question, why not just create us already in Heaven, with the unwillingness to sin we will have when we get there (God willing) and bypass our life on earth?
I suppose, this time on earth, is where we decide what we ultimately receive. In other words, it’s a test (an also our opportunity to show God we wish to grow in holiness). If God revealed Himself to us in the manner the OP asked, He’d be giving us the answers.
My best shot.:rolleyes:
I don’t see it so much a test as it is the only means for us to even be capable of having an actual relationship with God. I think our whole life is an opportunity of cultivating souls capable of union with Divine Love. I think it starts with loving one another, 1 John 4: 11-12
Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us.
Loving one another, valuing their good, helps us to know God and be able to draw closer to him. Being closer to God will also make our love for each other that much more perfect and will help lead others to union with God.
 For my thoughts are not your thoughts,neither are your ways my ways, says the LORD.  For as the heavens are higher than the earth,so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.
It could simply be that God doesn’t work that way as he implies here in scripture.
My suspicion is that one reason that God has chosen to mediate the Revelation of His Truth through men and progression is that there is a greater sense of satisfaction when you have to earn something and seek it with great effort than if it was given all at once.
Consider for example, Protestant converts to the Catholic Church, in particular, Steve Ray. From the moment of his initial commitment to Christ, as a young evangelical, he was consumed with a passion and urgency to understand the Scriptures. He studied and devoured Scripture and all sorts of Biblical commentaries by Protestants. But when he discovered the ECFs and later became Catholic, I recall that on the very eve of his conversion, he was at Al Kresta’s house, and the tears of joy and utter speachlessness ran down his face. And this was only further corroborated when he attended his first Mass.
He had sought the truth all his life, and when he finally found it in its fullness, he was utterly blown away, thankful and joyous beyond words. For kids who are brought up with all the materialisitc comforts from the beginning have less appreciation than those who started out poor and had to work towards it.
Correlated to this, I would say in personal meditation that God has allowed the development of great religions that are partially antagonistic to the Catholic Church (and here I speak mainly of the important, formally distinguished ones: Islam, Orthodoxy, Protestantism, and Deists/Rationalists) because He will draw an unimaginable greater good: he will allow the catastrophic suffering of the minor chastisement as a means of manifesting to humanity all of the spiritual deficiencies of non-Catholic errors, and in such a manner, as humanity learns through this painful manner the need for the fullness of truth, how much more fervently will humanity accept the Gospel.
For if the confounding of religious truth (especially through tragic and devastating Christian division) has brought about the loss of faith, what will the reunion of Christians mean except the kingdom of God on earth in all its fullness, a fullness that shall never be equaled except beyond time in the New Creation?
What is taught in the Sermon on the Mount might well have been given in many other ways: with command, as a rightful Lord and Master might have given it; with threats and sanctions, as might a promulgator of laws, even as Moses had done before him, or as John the Baptist had foreshadowed him; with cold aloofness, as might an independent ruler of his people. But it was not an independent, it was a feeling and fellow suffering soul which prompted the opening of the Sermon with the Eight Beatitudes; blessing the poor, by one who was himself acquainted with dire poverty; for the meek, from him who was of all men the meekest, and could claim meekness as specially his own; for the mournful, for the hungry after justice, from him who was weighed down by the cruelty and injustice of men all about him; for the merciful and forgiving, a new thing, as he taught it, in those days; for the clean of heart from him who, on that very account, knew and felt more than others the shamefulness and horror of sin; for the makers of peace; last of all, for those who suffer persecution.
“And it came to pass, when Jesus had fully ended these words, that the people were in admiration of his doctrine. For he was teaching them as one having power” - let us say, as one who knew - “and not as the scribes and Pharisees,” (Matthew 7:28-29) who, from their own experience, at least, had been careful not to know or learn. In this light, throughout his his great discourse to the people, did the Man of Sorrows reveal himself, the Man of others’ sorrows as well as of his own, of others sorrows because they were his own.
What would that accomplish? Lucifer and his angels had such a face-to-face knowledge, and look what they chose to do.
My experience, and I suspect that of others also, is that God reveals Himself plenty “well enough” when one is open to Him. One of the things that struck me the most when I came back to the faith is that, when one is not looking, one does not see God anywhere; but when one is looking, one sees Him everywhere.
I disagree. I don’t believe God, if he exists, reveals himself to a lot of us. Try as I might, I honestly can’t see how he’s revealed himself to me.
I see Him revealed each time I look upon the Holy Eucharist.
Why doesn’t God reveal himself to each of us?
Because God wants you to be happy to live in this world and not be overly keen to inhabit the next.
Trust me, from one who has experienced a mystical encounter with the Holy Sprit, it is so wonderful. But a downside is that one no longer wants to live in this world, one wants to leave it to be with Him always.
That is what we are destined for but not yet. That may be a clue why we do not ordinariy experience Him as a personal revelation.
Because you’d drop dead from sheer terror and purity.
Isaiah 6:5: And I said: “Woe is me! For I am lost; for I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips; for my eyes have seen the King, the LORD of hosts!”
I’ve wondered about that myself. I hope my views on this aren’t too odd, but I think he doesn’t reveal himself to us, because if he did we couldn’t stand it. His grace would be so compelling that it would overcome us.
I think just as God never gives us more temptation than we can handle, just so he never gives us more grace than we can handle.
That is why he is hidden in the Eucharist.