Why doesn't God talk to us?

If there is a God and he wants us to behave in certain ways, why doesn't he tell us what he wants us to do? Why doesn't he tell everyone which religion is the correct one? Should we follow Christianity, Hinduism, Buddhism, or some other? Maybe he doesn't approve of any of the world's current religions? How are we to know when he doesn't tell us?

At the time of writing, August 2021, the aggressive, murderous, cruel, barbaric, intolerant and strongly Islamic Taliban had just taken over the Afghan capital Kabul.

Another similar group, ISIS, took over parts of Iraq and Syria a few years ago, they were even more bloodthirsty and intolerant than the Taliban.

Just a few days ago the pamphlet below, claiming that Islam is the religion of peace and tolerance, was placed in my letter box.

Surely God cannot approve of all three interpretations. Why doesn't he tell us what he wants?

This page was started 2021/08/22, last edited 2021/09/17
Contact: David K. Clarke – ©
 


 
Islam, peace and tolerance
Is this the real Islam, or does the Taliban, or ISIS know what God wants?

Why couldn't God just tell them? And us?

Is Christianity a religion of love and forgiveness? Or did those who used to burn 'heretics' at the stake know what God wanted? Did the 'burnees' have the correct interpretation of Christianity or were the 'burners' right? Were they both wrong? Why didn't God intervene?

Is Catholicism or Protestantism the correct interpretation of God's will? In the Reformation Catholics killed thousands of Protestants and Protestants killed thousands of Catholics because each thought that they were right and the other lot wrong. Were either right? Surely if Christianity is about love and forgiveness both were wrong.

Why didn't God put them straight? He easily could have

We are told that our 'holy books', the Torah, the Bible, the Koran, the Vedas, the Guru Granth Sahib, contain God's instructions to us, telling us how we should live. Yet plainly they are open to interpretation and misinterpretation, and the Bible at least is self contradictory.


Hearing voices

People suffering from schizophrenia can believe that they hear voices in their heads. I suspect that at least some of the writers of the Bible and other 'holy books' were schizophrenia sufferers.

If God was to speak to us, how could we know that it was truly him and not a mental illness? If God did choose to speak to us he could give the same messages to us all, that would remove any ambiguity. And as mentioned elsewhere, surely a god who is omnipotent could devise a way of speaking to remove all doubt about who was speaking.



I've looked at the point of God giving instructions to us in a lighthearted way in Chatting with Michael.



What explanations are given by the religious about God not speaking to us directly?

 
A small part of our beautiful world
Island
We are not looking after our beautiful world as we should. Surely if there was a God he would want us to protect it. Why doesn't he tell us that we should be valuing and preserving his creation?
I'll comment on a few of the answers that popped up in a Google search on this question.

Billy Graham

In Billy Graham we are told that if God did speak to you how would you know it was really him? This makes little sense to me, surely an omnipotent God could make himself known with certainty.

Billy Graham says God spoke to us through the Bible. But Billy Graham destroys his own argument; if there truly was no way of knowing that God was speaking, how can we possibly know that it was he who was talking to the people in the Bible?

Peer Mag

The writer of Peer Mag is rather vague in his reasoning but at one point he says "I do not frequently hear the voice of God because He is kind and it is for my best interest." Make of that what you can.

The Gospel Coalition

The writer of the Gospel Coalition's page on the subject seems not to answer the question at all, he dances around it, but gives no explanation.

Theolatte

The writer of Theolatte said that "if God spoke to you there would always be that lingering doubt that you might have been wrong." Of course that is true, but again, if God said the same thing to many people there could be no doubt. And, again, if nobody can be sure that God had spoken to them how can we know that the people in the Bible had been spoken to by God? Surely if God spoke to us all, saying the same thing to everyone, we could know it was genuinely his word.

Theolatte gives other explanations, none of them at all convincing.

Christianity Today

The author of Christianity Today, Martin Saunders, says "God usually doesn't speak out loud". He goes on to say:
"God often speaks to us through the library of Scripture, as the Holy Spirit somehow makes ancient texts extraordinarily relevant to the situations we're facing today. He speaks to us through the wisdom of other Christians, and often prophetically through the example of their lives. Sometimes, I believe, he nudges and guides our thoughts, and uses the most extraordinary message-communication-system he ever designed – our own brains – to help us discern his will. For some, he speak in dreams; for still others, he speaks through art, or through nature. He is endlessly creative, and that extends to how he guides and talks to us. I actually believe he once spoke to me through a dog, but that's a story for another day."
I'm sorry Martin, but plainly these methods have not worked. If God truly has tried to get his message across this way then many people have obviously misunderstood it! You have not provided a half-way acceptable reason of why he does't just speak directly to us in a way that cannot be mistaken and giving the same message to all.


Another small part of our beautiful world
Blinman on a misty morning
I wonder why God is not telling us, loudly and clearly, what we should be doing to protect this world, if he created it? Why is he not telling us anything at all? Surely it is because he does not exist!


Conclusion

 

Protecting our environment

In the twenty-first century humanity is doing great damage to our shared environment (God's creation?) The ancient writings tell us nothing about looking after our environment - because there were few environmental problems in those long-gone days. But if God wrote the scriptures surely he could have foreseen environmental problems. Why did he not then, and why does he not now, tell us how we should look after 'his creation'?

Because he does not exist.

Religious people would have us believe that God spoke to people in the past. How do we know that they weren't schizophrenics who were suffering delusions? Why should we accept that God really spoke to these people when he is not speaking to us?

Religious people would have us believe that God spoke to selected people in the distant past, but doesn't speak to people any more, or that if he does, we can't be sure that it is God speaking. How could anyone in the past be sure that it was God speaking to them? Even more to the point, how can we know that God spoke to them at all, and even if he did, that they copied down his message accurately.

If God exists he should speak to us and make clear to us what is right and wrong. If there was a God and he chose to speak to us he could tell all the Taliban and all ISIS that they were wrong; giving the same message to each one would leave no doubt that it was 'the word of God'. But all we have is silence. Because God exists only in the imaginations of some of us.