John 12:39-41 Therefore they could not believe because that Esaias said again, He hath blinded their eyes, and hardened their heart; that they should not see with their eyes, nor understand with their heart, and be converted, and I should heal them. These things said Esaias, when he saw his glory, and spake of him.
I wonder if every person who reads the Bible encounters, as I do, verses which jump out and challenge their understanding. In the past I suspect I read these words of Jesus and gave them little thought. To the extent I did consider their meaning, I guess I concluded that for some reason God caused disbelief here so that He did not have to convert and heal, since I assumed that an individual's belief was a God mandated necessity for conversion and healing. That was what I had always been taught and therefore conditioned to accept. I doubt I even considered what motivated God to deliberately blind these Jews, thereby leaving them unhealed and unconverted.
It occurs to me now that these verses are saying that God caused their disbelief and would still heal and convert the Jews for the specific purpose of demonstrating His Glory. The idea that God can only be glorified in a display of unconditional love and mercy makes a lot more sense to me than believing that God could be glorified in His destruction of sinful and disbelieving men.
God can logically only be glorified in His acts of creation and benevolence. The natural world too emphatically shows that hatefulness and destruction are child's play. It involves no glory whatsoever. Anyone can kill and destroy. Reviving and re-constructing is the work of the divine. God destroying man is not newsworthy or glorious.
God loving man unconditionally, despite unbelief and malfeasance- now that is glorious front page news!! It might even transform the world.