Are we totally separated or estranged from God?
If you are reading this, and you are, then you are physically alive, but that does not mean you are necessarily spiritually alive to the things of God, nor does it mean you are totally separated from God. At least you are reading a Christian’s post so you are pretty close.
I believe that the Bible should bring HOPE and not condemnation, but if you are outside of Christ then you should read John 3:16-18 and see what your inaction or action will bring you.
John 3:16 For God so loved the world that He gave His only-begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. 17 For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but so that the world might be saved through Him. 18 He who believes on Him is not condemned, but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only-begotten Son of God. (MKJV)
Verse 16 is unconditional
Verse 17 is the disclaimer
Verse 18 verifies salvation is conditional
Where in the Bible does it say we are totally separated from God?
Are we totally separated from God?
If we are separated or estranged are we still God’s creation?
Before answering these questions please allow me to explain some perspectives.
Augustine the Catholic teacher wanted people to feel totally inadequate in dealing with their own sin and therefore it was easier for the Church and Government of the day to enforce control and manipulation on the people for their own gain.
Augustine wanted to create a distance between man and God so that the Church of the day could place itself between man and God to fulfil the antichrist role. The Church assumed the position of God on earth to have the power to forgive sins through the implementation of teachings which led to more control such as: penance, purgatory and indulgences. His teaching brought about the pinnacle of abuse in the Church with the condemnation of children and the unborn through the lack of understanding of growing and gaining of the knowledge of righteousness and sin.
In my King James Bible, I found the word separate 33 times separation 26 times, separated 33 times and separating only 1 time. In most of these applications the significance of separate is with dividing or selection a group or camp of allegiance.
The closest verse which uses the word SEPARATED from God because of SIN is found in Isaiah 59:1-2.
Isaiah 59:1-2 Behold, the LORD’S hand is not shortened, that it cannot save; neither his ear heavy, that it cannot hear: 2 But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear. (KJV)
Please note the Scripture above starts with, “LORD’S hand is not shortened” thus indicating He is near.
The next part says, “that it cannot save; neither his ear heavy, that it cannot hear” in this sense the, “IT” is referring to God’s body part and not Him as a person. Thus indicating He is all powerful and can save a sinner.
Then he says, “and your sins have hid his face from you” only indicating that the sinner has a spiritual blindness.
The final section of this verse is where it says; “that He will not hear” indicates without repentance you cannot make supplication to God. This is confirmed when it is read in context with the whole chapter of Isaiah 59. Isaiah 59 is all about deliverance, salvation and the interaction of the Israelites with God.
In the following two Scriptures we see the same concept. Please note the use of the words being aliens, strangers, and alienated from the life of God, thus having a spiritual blindness.
Ephesians2:12 That at that time ye were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world (KJV)
Ephesians 4:18 Having the understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God through the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart: (KJV)
To fully understand our condition weather saved or unsaved, we need to realize the parameters of God.
Omnipresent – Our God the one true and living God being everywhere.
Omnipotent – Our God the one true and living God who has unlimited power, being all-powerful nothing is impossible for Him.
Omniscient – God is eternal ALL knowing, understanding all things past, present, and future. He knows the motives of our hearts.
Immutable – Our God is stable, changeless, perpetual, never changing or varying; unchangeable, He is not capable or susceptible of change or able to lie. Because He permanently exists in eternity, He shows no partiality. His Word or the judgments are set in eternity. He is a just God.
Infinite – God is seen in all of creation, but He is not creation… He is the creator and He has no limits. He is absolute supreme authority and His love endures forever. He has no beginning and He has no end. He lives in eternity, He is boundless. He is infinite power with infinite wisdom. He created all things. He is endless, unconfined, countless, incalculable, interminable, inexhaustible, bottomless, unfathomable, without end, limitless, tremendous, immense, having no limit, and immeasurable.
His Name is God – His name is for Him alone and no one has the right to call themselves God.
We know that on the cross Jesus was so filled by sin, pain and the ills of creation, realizing that He became the first man to feel totally separated from God. It is remarkable that man has not experienced this state as yet. Even those who have died in the past have not experienced total separation. Total separation is reserved for the judgment at the second resurrection where all who have rejected God will go into hell to spend an eternity without the light of God.
Calvinists and Armenians believe in the total depravity of man, but total means total. If that is the case can anyone be heard by God in a prayer of revelation of the need of God and repentance? No we are not totally separated because of sin.
Man is deeply lost or estranged and spiritually unaware of God being near to Him, but in the spiritual sickness of sin with an unwillingness to repent. However, as man has deposited or a possibility to repent in him at varying levels of faith, based on the fact that man was created in God’s image and after His likeness. God did not withdraw His image and likeness nor the awareness of eternity from man at the fall, even though man had become corrupted. Thus we still have hope.
Our revelation in the working of God in us and around us will help in our defence, victory and our advancement as we walk and serve an all powerful God.
To answer my first question: Where in the Bible does it say we are totally separated from God?
No where! Not while we have breath and God is everywhere.
Having just read the parameters of God we cannot say we are totally separated from God while a person still has breath in the lungs to repent.
The second question: Are we totally separated from God?
No! Not while we have breath.
Again knowing the parameters of God and having a breath to say we are sorry for our sins means our estranged relationship can be repaired.
To say we are totally separated from God because of our sins is an incorrect understanding of Scriptures. “Totally,” is an extreme or absolute term! Man is not totally depraved and does have some glimmer of hope to respond to the leading of the Holy Spirit, thus the synergy of Scripture is maintained.
If we are separated or estranged are we still God’s creation?
Yes we are still His creation, His children but we may be in rebellion.
The gift from God of salvation through Jesus is set in eternity but not everyone will respond to the call to repent.
How can any Christian believe that an Omnipresent, Omnipotent, Omniscient, Immutable, Infinite, God can be separated from His creation? It’s not possible!
God is involved in all parts of His creation.
While we are still alive we are not totally separated from God, but we may be alienated or estranged. God is still the Father of all, but our lines of communication are out of order, as if it were like we are trying to see through a thick fog. God the father, Jesus the Son and the Holy Spirit are the repairers of our lines of communication, but at some point we need to repent for full restoration to take place.
It is through our sins we are alienated, estranged from God, but NOT totally separated from God. The only separation that we can be in is the camp of the sinners or the righteous.
2 Chronicles 7: 14 If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land. (KJV)
God is still near; waiting for our repentance and this will invoke all the dynamics of the Kingdom of God to open your eyes to see Him all around you.
When we read Psalms 139 7-17 we find God is near the sinner too.
Psalm 139:7-17 Where shall I go from Your Spirit? Or where shall I flee from Your presence? 8 If I go up into Heaven, You are there; if I make my bed in Sheol, behold, You are there. 9 If I take the wings of the morning and dwell in the furthest parts of the sea; 10 even there shall Your hand lead me, and Your right hand shall hold me. 11 If I say, Surely the darkness shall cover me, even the night shall be light around me. 12 Yea, the darkness does not hide from You; but the night shines as the day; as is the darkness, so is the light to You. 13 For You have possessed my inward parts; You have covered me in my mother’s womb. 14 I will praise You; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Your works are marvelous and my soul knows it very well. 15 My bones were not hidden from You when I was made in secret and skillfully formed in the lowest parts of the earth. 16 Your eyes saw my embryo; and in Your book all my members were written, the days they were formed, and not one was among them. 17 How precious also are Your thoughts to me, O God! How great is the sum of them! (MKJV)
Remember; total means just that; and if you use that word then are you totally sure there are no Scriptures that contradict your position of understanding?
We need to bring hope to people by saying, “God knew you were going to sin and now you need to take responsibility for that and repent.”
Repentance invokes or appropriates the power of the blood of Jesus.
God had judged sin at the beginning of time.
The verdict on sin is that it has no place with Him in eternity.
Sin with the lack of repentance sentences a person to hell.
Adam was put out of the Garden because he did not repent.
God did not turn His back on Adam or us.
Sin is the spiritual sickness of mankind; but the medicine is repentance, and the cure is Jesus.
Sin is in the spirit realm not in the physical, although it is in the physical realm where we may see its outworking.
Repentance is stronger than sin.
In the end if a person does not repent the outcome is not heaven.
Dr . Ian Traill
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There are some who identify with Arminians who reject total depravity. Most of those who reject total depravity would not claim to be Arminian. For instance, F. Lagard Smith who wrote the book, Troubling Questions for Calvinists…and the Rest of Us, rejects total depravity but does not claim Arminianism either since Arminians hold to a form of total depravity much like the Calvinistic view. The question then arises, should we accept those who reject total depravity as taught by John Calvin or James Arminius? While Arminius was not in full agreement with Calvin or total depravity (with regard to the loss of free will), Arminius did teach the traditional Augustine view that we are born depraved. Arminius would not doubt agree that we are born sinful and that our only hope is the grace of God to move upon us for salvation.