2. Openness Of God
When we see God's position of desiring transparency and clarity, we may ask just how clear God is in the way that he deals with humanity. Sometimes, when disasters happen, and evil triumphs, we may wonder if God is really showing his justice. Does he make clear to us the nature of the world?
In the book of Amos, God had a message for his people Israel of impending punishment. In chapter 3, he expressed that because they were his special people, he would punish them for their sins. Amos then goes on to explain how they only had to open their eyes in order to see the punishments and actions of God around them.
Amos 3:3: Do two walk together, Unless they have agreed? 4 Will a lion roar in the thicket, When he has no prey? Does a young lion cry out of his den, If he has caught nothing? 5. Can a bird fall in a trap on the earth, Where no snare is set for him? Does a snare spring up from the ground, When there is nothing to catch? 6 Does the trumpet alarm sound in a city, Without the people being afraid? Does evil happen to a city, And Yahweh hasn't done it? 7 Surely the Lord Yahweh will do nothing, Unless he reveals his secret to his servants the prophets. WEB
The work of God is clear.
The evils in the world aren't some uncontrollable accident, or force of nature beyond God's control. Instead its a direct symptom of the state of the world that we are in. It leaves us with no excuse to think that all is right when in fact it isn't. It paints the world in the colour to appear as it really is.
In the garden of Eden, after the sin, the punishment described to Adam set the standard of what was going to follow:
Genesis 3:17: To Adam he said, "Because you have listened to your wife's voice, and have eaten of the tree, of which I commanded you, saying, `You shall not eat of it,' cursed is the ground for your sake. In toil you will eat of it all the days of your life. 18 Thorns also and thistles will it bring forth to you; and you will eat the herb of the field. 19. By the sweat of your face will you eat bread until you return to the ground, for out of it you were taken. For you are dust, and to dust you shall return." WEB
From that point forward, the earth was still going to reflect the true nature of the world, and not hide the presence of sin. The thorns and troubles would be a reminder of which path humanity was on. God, in his justice, required a consistency
Consistency: World Shows its Nature
In Isaiah 32 we see mention of the thorns and briers in the land, symbolising the hardships of the people. They had been people who were at ease and complacent. Their erring away from God had left them exposed to the curse that the sinful world is under.
Isaiah 32:13: On the land of my people shall come up thorns and briers; yes, on all the houses of joy in the joyous city. 14 For the palace shall be forsaken; the populous city shall be deserted; the hill and the watch-tower shall be for dens forever, a joy of wild donkeys, a pasture of flocks; WEB
While ever the society was corrupt, it was going to appear corrupt. God was allowing the flawed nature to show through as part of making it consistent and transparent.
However, in the future, there was going to be a change. There was going to be a change where the righteous would rule, and evil would be done away with. Under these conditions, the land would again appear fruitful, and the lifestyle innocent.
Isaiah 32:15: until the Spirit be poured on us from on high, and the wilderness become a fruitful field, and the fruitful field be esteemed as a forest. 16. Then justice shall dwell in the wilderness; and righteousness shall abide in the fruitful field. 17 The work of righteousness shall be peace; and the effect of righteousness, quietness and confidence forever. 18. My people shall abide in a peaceable habitation, and in safe dwellings, and in quiet resting-places. WEB
Covered to be Revealed
As humans, we tend to like to hide things. When we build buildings, we carefully panel and hide the features that aren't so pretty. When we build cars, we go to all sorts of troubles to avoid the heads of screws being visible, lest people should be distracted to see the ugly mechanics of how its really held together. When it comes to our lives, we hide the things that we don't want revealed. These might be the things that demonstrate who we really are.
Society covers up the signs of evil, because we would rather believe that things are alright. When a disaster occurs, we may doubt God, and consider it something unfortunate that happened because it was beyond his control to stop.
Similarly, in life we can be led to think that a double-existence will work. We can be left with a nominal service to God, but our inner dreams and motivations somewhere else.
We are warned though, that the hidden will be revealed. No matter how clever we get in creating a complex life of appearance and reality, eventually it will be reduced to simplicity and consistency. At the time of Jesus, the Pharisees had built up a complex lifestyle, and the warning was given to them that this was a hypocrisy that would be torn down:
Luke 12:1: Meanwhile, when a multitude of many thousands had gathered together, so much so that they trampled on each other, he began to tell his disciples first of all, "Beware of the yeast of the Pharisees, which is hypocrisy. 2. But there is nothing covered up, that will not be revealed, nor hidden, that will not be known. 3. Therefore whatever you have said in the darkness will be heard in the light. What you have spoken in the ear in the inner chambers will be proclaimed on the housetops. WEB
Ecclesiastes 12:14: For God will bring every work into judgment, with every hidden thing, whether it is good, or whether it is evil. WEB
1 Corinthians 4:5: Therefore judge nothing before the time, until the Lord comes, who will both bring to light the hidden things of darkness, and reveal the counsels of the hearts. Then each man will get his praise from God. WEB