God allows us to live our lives how we want to. He gives us free will. He does not control every move that we make. We are not predestined individually to be saved or lost. God made all things and made the rules. God provided what we need for salvation and what we need to live. He told us how we need to live but did not control us to live in that very way. God has given us free will.
If we start back in the book of Judges we have many examples of God’s people who had God’s instruction and did not live by God’s instruction. What happened when they did not live by God’s standard? They fell into captivity under Gentile nations. Every time, God would allow them to be captured because of their disobedience.
They did not want to follow God so God allowed it to happen. When they had enough they would call out to God, change their ways, and make the right decisions, and God would raise up a judge to deliver them out of their enemies’ hands. That is only after they repent and turn back to God. Then after a time of freedom they would turn away from God and go back into captivity.
We move forward to the minor prophets and see a common theme. They disobeyed God, and since they did not live by God’s Word, judgment is coming for them. They turned away from God, and because of that they get to live with the consequences of their actions. In this case the consequence for turning away from God was that judgment was coming. They would be destroyed because they did not want to live by God’s Word. He created all so He gets to make the rules.
He loves us and wants us to succeed, but if we do not listen to Him, punishment ensues. It is exactly like the relationship between a parent and their child. The child decides to disobey, and the parent brings punishment upon them. The parent does not hate their child, but they need to be taught and led in the right direction. God would bring judgment upon His people if they would not listen to Him.
Now let us jump to Romans 1:18-32. God allows people to live how they want. If they live in sin, they are allowed to do so. God gives them up, meaning He allows us to make that decision. But that also means that just like in the Old Testament, if we choose to ignore God and the instructions that He gives us in His Word, we cannot expect to receive rest and blessings at the end of this life, but rather we should expect to receive punishment. God has not changed. Disobedience receives punishment. Obedience receives eternal life. It is that simple.
The hard part is choosing to live by God’s Word, every second of every day because temptations are hard to overcome, but not impossible. We need to choose to live by God’s Word if we want to enjoy eternal life after this physical life! No one can choose for us and no one can do the work for us. Let us strive to do what is right in the sight of God!