I recently finished a series of books that explore a very interesting topic: absolute power. It’s called The Long Price Quartet, a four book series by Daniel Abraham that begins with A Shadow in Summer. Briefly, in Abraham’s fictional world there are created beings called ‘andat’ who have tremendous power. The andat featured in A Shadow in Summer is called Seedless. It has the ability to remove seeds from cotton. However, it also has the ability to remove any seed, including those of humans. As the series progresses, more andat are revealed, some of which have far greater powers. One can shape stone. Any stone, anywhere, instantly made into any shape. Think about what that could to an enemy nation in a war. While those who control the andat do not think about that, other nations do. They feel threatened by those who control the andat and seek to destroy them once and for all. This is the setting for The Long Price Quartet.
This got me thinking about God and the common complaint I hear about God, which is that if God is out there, why not do something to make it clear? Why be supernatural? Why not just show up in the clouds and say “Look, here I am!”? This series gave me a reason why: because if God did that, some people would feel threatened. They would rebel. We human beings don’t like it when others have power over us. It makes us nervous, and if God were to show up in a definitive way, it would turn a lot of people away from God. This is the exact opposite of what God wants, which is a relationship with each and every person. I think God is present in a supernatural way, rather than a natural way, because it leaves the door to relationship open to more people. More people would rebel against a visible God than resist an invisible one. I think.