This is another way of saying we're under the law of "cause and effect", or "sowing and reaping".
We get this from scripture, which says:
Gal 6:7 Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, this he will also reap.
[NOTE: This is in the new testament -- after the Atonement.]
So ... what if, rather than seeing this as God punishing us for what we do, it's God telling us that the way we perceive, is the way we'll experience? Whatever we hold as "truth" in our minds, that is what we'll see and experience? What we'll reap...?
What if, rather than seeing God as the one who is giving us the diseases we've earned, He's instead revealing to us the fulfillment of a basic human law? What if we, by our choices, our beliefs and our resulting actions, are bringing about the very disease and suffering we blame on God?
Then we think we have to beg God to remove this affliction He's "caused or allowed" ... or we try to repent and appease Him for our failures. When God doesn't change the results of our own thinking, we figure that He's abandoned us ... He's either unABLE (less than Omnipotent), or unWILLing (less than all loving) or else we figure we're spiritually inept, or have maybe committed the unforgiveable sin ... thus plunging in to the abyss of self-condemnation (and then imagining that it's GOD who's condemning us!). IF we are able, by our extreme self-effort, to adhere to our own standards of correct behavior, then we congratulate ourselves for our self-righteousness ... proud of our ability to be better than the other poor scums, whom we condemn as having failed.
Such ugliness ... and all blamed on God!
Not to mention utterly exhausting and demoralizing!
It seems to me that the entire purpose of the Law was to show us that it's pointless to try to achieve our own goodness ... that it was impossible for us to achieve perfection on our own efforts. Some of us never try, and others of us nearly kill ourselves in trying. Many of us have to give up in utter defeat ... admitting failure.
And God smiles.
He says to us, "Yes, you've come to the end of your own efforts -- I'm so glad you see that this won't work. It was never meant to. But, you had to see it for yourself, in order to believe it. I created you to experience, in order to learn."
And then He begins to show us how HE feels about us, how HE sees us ... we learn, to our absolute amazement, that He LIKES us ... just as we are! Flaws and all. Wow! We come to see how He loves us, not blindly, but with complete knowledge of us, inside and out. It's in that realization, of His love, that we can respond to Him with love of our own (which He puts in us)... we love Him because He first loved us (while we were still "enemies in our own minds" BTW!). We then start to respond to God out of love, rather than out of fear (which never worked, if you were paying attention). We then notice that we begin to change, out of that atmosphere and awareness of how we are loved and accepted -- whereas before we thought we had to change in order to *earn* His love and acceptance! Whew! What relief!
It just takes a shift of understanding ... not effort, not striving, not earning, not even "believing the right doctrine" (such as: God had to sacrifice God in order to appease God) (which is just another "good work") ...
Since this shift started happening in my own understanding, I am shocked to discover how many things have *always* been in scripture ... right under my nose (though it seems as if God keeps sneaking new stuff into my Bible!).
Try this on for size:
Psalm 32:2 Blessed are those
whose sin the LORD does not count against them
Psalm 103:10 He has not dealt with us according to our sins,
Nor punished us according to our iniquities.
[NOTE: These are in the "old testament" -- prior to the Atonement.]
How have the traditions of man nullified the word of God (which is not the Bible, but that which He is continuously telling us, as He leads us into all truth)...?