I am struggling with two questions that keep me from being a Christian. I truly want to love and praise the Lord but I have some doubts about him.
First of all The Bible says that God hates our sinful personality and everything we do but at the same time He loves us. What is it that He loves? How can he love us if he hates who we are.
The second question is this: Why do I have to get punished for Adams sin. I mean I didn't choose to be born on this sinful earth.
Nabeel. I am so brokenhearted I truly need God in my life and I am so sad because I don't understand who he is. I would really appreciate it if you could answer these two question for me. Thank you so much!
Thank you for asking these questions. Here is my answer:
1) I encourage you, my brother, to see God as your father. Tell me, how would a good father react if his son were committing crimes? Let's say the son is mugging and beating people on the street. A good father would hate the crimes, denouncing them as the evil that they are. But that father would not stop loving his son. Certainly he would reprimand him, admonish him that he is doing wrong, perhaps even punish him by turning him over to the authorities! But all of this would be done out of love, towards the end that the son would change.
God is the same. He is a Father who loves us, though he hates our crimes (sins). He loves us as the people we are: creations which bear his image. Don't make the mistake of equating humans with their sins. Humans are not their sins, they are beloved creations made in the image of God.
2) Different people answer this question differently, and I am not as well versed in theology as many others whom you could ask. But my answer is this: we are not punished for the sins of our ancestors, at least not directly. Read Ezekiel 18 in its entirety. I will quote vv.18-19:
Yet you ask, ‘Why does the son not share the guilt of his father?’ Since the son has done what is just and right and has been careful to keep all my decrees, he will surely live. The one who sins is the one who will die. The child will not share the guilt of the parent, nor will the parent share the guilt of the child. The righteousness of the righteous will be credited to them, and the wickedness of the wicked will be charged against them.
According to Ezekiel, we are not punished for Adam's sin in a direct sense. What Adam's sin did was it introduced sin into the earth, and thereby introduced death. It also shattered the image in which he was made. Imagine a mirror that reflects the image of God; that is how Adam was originally made. When he sinned, it was like taking a hammer to that mirror: the image of God is still there, but it is shattered. Even if the pieces of that mirror are put back together, it will never be the same. Not until it is miraculously remade. Thus are we after Adam sinned, inheriting that broken image of God, which predisposes us to sin such that all men ultimately sin. They are not punished for the sins of their fathers, but their own, an eventuality guaranteed by Adam's sin.
As I have said, this is but one view among many, but I hope it answers your question, and I pray that you will overcome these hurdles and grow in love for our Maker and Father.