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December 3, 1993

Nowhere to Hide

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The eyes of the LORD are everywhere, keeping watch on the wicked and the good. PROVERBS 15:3
Unlike the process in our justice system, God doesn’t need to gather evidence to come to a decision about our guilt or innocence in a given circumstance. He sees every action, and He even sees our hearts as we undertake those actions. Knowledge of this aspect of God’s character can be a source of great comfort or great fear.
Many passages in Scripture marvel at God’s omniscience—with particular emphasis on His all-seeing eyes. While they lead us to understand God’s nature better, they also give us a powerful incentive for righteous conduct.
For example, 2 Chronicles 16:9 says, “[T]he eyes of the LORD range throughout the earth to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to him.” Likewise, David remarks that God examines the sons of men. As a result, He rains down fiery coals and sends a hot wind to the wicked, but upright men see His face (Psalm 11:4-7). And Hebrews 4:13 says, “Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account.” Because God sees everything, He will strengthen us in our devotion, punish the wicked, allow the upright to see His face, and one day demand an account of our actions.
But perhaps the most eloquent and well-known commentary on God’s omniscience is Psalm 139, in which David ends with a plea for God to search his heart and his life because nothing is hidden from Him (vv. 23-24). This reveals yet one more facet to God’s penetrating vision: He sees what we are blind to in ourselves. So even if we think we’re doing right, acting with integrity, and treating our fellow human beings justly, there may be pockets of offensiveness that we won’t—or can’t—acknowledge.
It’s easy to look at our lives and become self-satisfied. We don’t steal or lie; we don’t cheat on our spouses; we’re faithful and consistent in our work. What would happen if, like David, we asked God to test us and reveal our shortcomings—all of them? The result for most of us would probably not be pleasant. But only by ridding ourselves of those offensive ways will we be able to commit to Him fully.

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