Donny's Ramblings

God Can't Look On Sin, Right? Why Not?


Is it possible that the reason God “can’t look on sin” is simply because it hurts him too much? Yeah, I know… I know. He’s mega holy and sin is far beneath him. But is that the REAL reason?

It’s really hard for me to buy into the fear mongering that goes on in the types churches I grew up in. I’ve seriously heard people talking about scaring others into heaven. I’ve wondered, on more than one occasion, why any intelligent being would want to be “loved” simply because the alternative scares the crap out of people.

“Hey Wendy, marry me (again) or I’ll send you to a place of eternal torment!” (Hey, I haven’t tried that one yet… maybe I should! How romantic!)

Personally, I’m thinking it’s more a case of God not being able to stand the pain he feels when we harm ourselves. Once again I’ll refer to my son. Thinking of Caden always makes God a bit more understandable for me.

There is nothing Caden could ever do to make me love him any less (guess what? God feels the same way about us).

There are things, however, that I couldn’t bear to witness. Like if Caden decided as an adult to shoot heroine into his arms. Or other things much too horribly disgusting for me to consider thinking about. I’d still love him, but I really wouldn’t want to witness those things. It would hurt way too much and my heart might not be able to take it.

Do you think, perhaps, that God’s heart can’t bear watching us harm ourselves, and that’s the REAL reason he can’t look on sin?

(Daddy, I love you!)

12 thoughts on “God Can't Look On Sin, Right? Why Not?


  2. The book of Hosea illustrates your point. I think you make a good point, Donny. It grieves him because he is holy and because we’re hurting ourselves.

    I hate religion and religious people. I know hate is a strong word, but beating people up because they sin just makes me really angry.

    No other institution does a better job of shooting their wounded than the Christian church. I think that is what grieves God the most. A bunch of self-righteous, Bible thumping, moronic prigs scares the crap out of me. They’ve done more damage to tarnish the name of Christ than 1,000 pastors falling into immorality.

    In my church is someone were to stand up and say, “hey I am struggling with porn,” they’d be freaking flogged and stoned. They are modern day pharisees! And yes I have specific people in mind as I write this.

    The Confessions of a Porn Addict

  3. God is holy. His love is a holy, pure love. When Isaiah witnessed a theophany, he saw and heard the seraphims say, “Holy, holy, holy, is the Lord of Hosts; the whole earth is full of His glory.” Isaiah 6:1-4

    God cannot look upon sin, because He is holy. The prophet Habakkuk said, “Thou art of purer eyes than to behold evil and canst not look on iniquity.”

    – David

  4. The other day I was hanging out too close with a friend of mine who is of the opposite sex. We really like each other but they feel like God is saying no to us being in a relationship. Then all of the sudden I could feel God’s manifest presence there. When I mentioned that, my friend said that God still loves us, even in our weaknesses. I was almost surprised that I felt His presence in that situation when I wasn’t trying to focus on Him. Oh, how He loves us! Thank you Daddy! I’m sorry for trying to be filled by anyone’s love other than yours!

  5. This is a tough question to answer. What does it mean to say that God can’t “look on sin?” He can’t physically watch? He can’t know about it? He can’t accept it? More information needed.

  6. David pretty much nailed my thought on the subject, but the problem is that the wrong question is being asked.

    Yes, God is Holy. He cannot abide sin because of his nature. But why does that matter when he gave Jesus to be our Heavenly Pressure-washer, to give us a clean slate and a new heart with which to be obedient to him?

    Read this from Romans 3:25b-28:
    This was to demonstrate His righteousness, because in the forbearance of God He passed over the sins previously committed; for the demonstration, I say, of His righteousness at the present time, so that He would be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus. Where then is boasting? It is excluded. By what kind of law? Of works? No, but by a law of faith. For we maintain that a man is justified by faith apart from works of the Law.

    You may want to read the preceeding verses as well, but I’m looking specifically at the end, that a man is justified by faith apart from works of the Law. We’re so ready to jump on people for doing such and such or not doing such and such, where the law of faith transcends any of that.

    Where a brother sins, grace through faith in Christ can cover it! THAT is the answer.

  7. I honestly don’t think we’ll ever know why. This is one of those “Can God microwave a burrito so hot even He can’t eat it” type of questions. God is holy, pure, and full of righteousness. The mixing of unholiness or “sin” may cut Him so deep because He longs to be with us but “sin” blocks Him from dwelling within, and amongst us for the sheer fact that in order to stay fair and just He would have to find us guilty, not that He would want to.

    God is Love, but God is also Justice, we can’t fathom that, and even if we say we do, we can’t grasp it or even wrap our brains around it.

    The only problem I have with this is sometimes God’s love is taken to an extreme where people treat grace as some sort of doormat , where they accept Jesus died for their sins and justify this as a reason to never change. Some people fail to see that salvation is a process, and not a “end all, be all.” How many parents would gladly continue to breast feed their children and let them wear diapers until they were well in to their teens? I would hope none, and if they would then we would have to question their parenting motives. Why do we allow some of our brothers and sisters to continue to wade in the same sins?

    We must be there to allow openness, allow sins to be confessed without fear of condemnation, and be there to help our brothers and sisters to reach sanctification, but we also have to be alert to brothers and sisters abusing their free gift. We’re all sinners, we all fall short, and we all need daily grace, but let’s not mistake God’s kindness and love for weakness.

    Sorry for the long-winded speech,
    Peace Love and God Bless,

  8. i can’t help but question this too. thanks for your transparency on this blog.

    btw, i am looking for a christian church here in l.a. i am an ex-industry person as well and i want to find somewhere that is accepting, loving…and maybe a little hip? can you recommend something? i want to go but i’m scared to.

  9. That was excellent, Donny.
    Good thoughts.
    It made me think of my daughter.
    Once when my daughter was 4,
    she stole candy from the store. She
    had to apologize to the manager.
    Then she was punished when she got home.
    And she did it 8 more times!!!
    Every time, we went through
    the same old process, apologizing to the
    manager over and over again,
    & then corporal punishment over & over again at home.
    It didn’t work.
    The Manager became so frustrated by then, he
    finally told my daughter that if she ever did it again,
    she could never return to
    the store! She loved going to the store! It was the
    high point of her week!!!
    It was fear over losing what she loved,
    that she finally stopped stealing.
    I learned that our human nature
    can be very stubborn.
    I think there is a reason Jesus spoke of heaven
    and hell. Not to scare us, but for
    comparison sake, to see what we will be losing!
    Just a thought.

  10. Hello Korina,

    The porn star who used to go by “Crissy Moran” is now out of the business as well. She goes to a church in LA that she’s says is really good and accepting and cool. She has a myspace page here:

    I’m sure she’d be happy to tell you which church she attends.

    – Donny –

  11. Totally interesting question. I’ve never wondered why he cannot look on sin and I’m not aware of the bible telling us why he cannot. Maybe it is just not possible. My eyes cannot see the infrared spectrum of light. I can feel the warmth of it but I cannot look upon it. Maybe God designed himself that way.

    Regardless of the reason — when we sin we know he cannot look upon our sin anyway. But he can look at us. “while we were yet sinners he loved us”. the bible speaks of us as vessels. “does the pot say the potter why did you make me this way?” If God cannot look upon sin (nor love it for that matter) our sin does not prevent us from loving him. The bible makes it clear he can still love us when we sin. He loves the vessel — what he made. He hates what sin does to us and he hates the sin that does it.

    Probably the worst fate you can imagine would be to be forced to spend eternity with someone you hate. If you don’t accept God despite his love for you and his best efforts to reconcile with you — why would you want to spend eternity with him? He is kind enough to have created a place that has none of his glory or presence in it. If you can’t stand him you cannot stand his presence — therefore hell was created as a place where he is completely absent.

    God does not want anyone to choose hell. God is not trying to keep people out of heaven he is trying to keep them out of hell. He wants to spend eternity with you — all you have to do is say “yes I’m up for that, forgive me, please take me” and you’re accepted. Don’t let your sin stop you from receiving his love — even if you sin. If you try to stop sinning before accepting God’s love you’ll never experience it and know that his love is offered unconditionally as a free gift to you while you are a sinner.

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