If God understands my humanity and sin nature better than I do, why does He still hold me accountable for what I cannot help doing?


 This is a very good question.  This gets to the heart of the question.  Is God truly fair and is he truly just to judge us for our sins?  If God created us with the ability and perhaps even the likelihood that we would rebel against him why would he be right to judge us for that seemingly inevitable eventuality?  This seems to be the spirit behind the rhetorical question Paul throws out in Romans 9:19, "Then why does God still blame us? For who resists his will?"   Of course, Paul continues with a rather strong response, "But who are you, O man, to talk back to God?"   I believe that in the ultimate sense, Paul is right.   Who are we to question God who made us?  Given that he has ultimate choice over our eternal fate, we are probably wise to say "yes sir!" to God.   However, I believe your question is asked in sincerity and I believe it deserves a reasonable response.  God does not mind us asking questions of him as long as we do it in humility.   My answer is that God holds us accountable for the very reason you mention.  In other words, God has every right to hold us accountable for our sinful actions for the very reason that he knows our sinful nature even better than we do.  He knows our hearts fully and all the motives of our actions.  If I understand it correctly (a big if!), the reason God created us is that he wanted to love us and he wanted us to love him.   He gave us amazing opportunities, and he trusted us with the world and everything in it.  Unfortunately, we abused the wonderful things he gave us.  We rebelled against him.    We chose, willfully, to reject him and the perfect life he had in mind for us.  The story of Adam and Eve in the garden describes this situation beautifully.   Paul states our situation before God in rather stark terms in Romans 3:9-18.  Like he says, no one is righteous.  All of us have chose the way of sin and rebellion.  God loves us but he hates sin.  He REALLY hates sin.  He will bring sin into judgment.  However, he also loves us very much.  To me the key passage on this subject is Romans 3:21-26 in which Paul describes how God, in his love, but not ignoring his own justice, offered his Son as a substitutional sacrifice so that God’s justice can be satisfied, but that at the same time He can treat us just as if we had never sinned. The answer to your question as I see it is yes.  Despite the fact that it may, from one point of view, seem unjust for God to judge us for choosing a path he made possible for us to choose, God is just in his judgments.  For myself, I do not plan on challenging God to his face on Judgment Day.  I plan on bowing my head and declaring that God is good and just.  I, for one, do not plan on talking back to God.  Besides, I have looked into the question and I believe that God IS just, good and right for all his judgments, even if there are some I do not completely understand at this point. John Oakes


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