Leviticus 5:17 declares if anyone sins and does what is forbidden in any of the Lord’s commands, even though they do not know it, they are guilty and will be held responsible.
God says we are guilty of disobedience to Him, sin, even if we don’t know what He requires. For many, this seems too harsh, unfair and therefore unacceptable to them for giving their allegiance to God.
Why does God take this position, that all will be held accountable to Him for disobedience even if they didn’t know His commands? I think there are three primary reasons.
First, God made humanity to worship and serve Him thus bringing Him honor and glory upon the earth. The fact that our ancestors rebelled and have deposited in our dna the rebellion gene still makes us accountable to the One Who Created us and will Judge us. Since He is God He gets to make the rules and decide what is right and wrong. Our chaffing at that reality is evidence of our rebellion and not God’s character. The truth is He is good and wonderful but He is God and as such He expects His Creation to seek Him and obey Him.
Second, God’s reality can be seen from what has been made. The outside world screams a Creator was involved. Modern science is even now starting to come around to this view after spending more than 100 years trying to deny it. Creation itself testifies to God’s existence and ignoring that voice will not eliminate our accountability to God Who made everything to declare His Worth.
Third, our own conscience indicates God exists. Everyone in the world from the dawn of creation has a basic sense of right and wrong. The culture helps shape this belief for sure but the fact that we even discuss what is right and what is wrong indicates we inherently know something is right and something is wrong and this inherent knowledge comes from Him Who is righteous, holy and perfect in all His ways. Deadening our conscience or experiencing the evil from someone how deadened their conscience does not eliminate our responsibility from doing what He commands is right.
The Judge of all humanity declares everyone has sinned against Him, none are good but all do evil.
However, as our heavenly Father, He further declares He loves us and proved His love through the sacrifice of His Son as punishment on our behalf so that we could be pardoned for all of our sins against God whether recognized or unrecognized.
God will judge all and will pardon all who humbly come to Him now and seek His forgiveness for all the disobedience we have committed against God.