The problem of divine hiddenness is an extremely imposing and very impressive mirage. Seen from some angles, and especially when first seen, it seems like any attempt to respond to it would be hopeless, ad hoc, and textbook case of special pleading. But in walking around the problem you suddenly hit many angles where it vanishes entirely. Here are a few:
1.) God doesn’t live here. The gods dwell in the heavens or on Olympus or in Valhalla or the Underworld or whatever. Wondering where the gods are hidden is like standing in the forest and wondering where all the sharks are hidden.
2.) The holy is always both set apart and hidden. Mystery cults don’t do the Superbowl halftime show, Catholics require catechumens to leave before the sacred mysteries, Masons don’t televise the initiation rite, the Mafia never talks about how a guy gets made, and the Eleusian mysteries were practiced on an entire empire for well over a millenia and we have basically no information about what happened. No one talked. Seen in this way, wondering about “divine hiddenness” is to wonder about why the sacred is not more profane, which is about as interesting as wondering why triangles aren’t rounder.
3.) The hiddenness is either ontological or epistemological, and the problem disappears either way. If ontological, we’re either wondering what part of the universe the divine is living in (contra #1) or where the gods are hidden in daily life (contra #2). If the problem is epistemological, it amounts to claiming that the number of persons who know about God is problematically low. But what equations or p-values give us that conclusion? How do believers in divine hiddenness refute the claim that far too many know about the divine?
4.) It is a problem for revelation only when that revelation is taken out of context. One can wonder why a loving Christ would not make himself more known to persons* or why a Lordly Allah would not make his authority more known to the nations, but in either case this is to demand something that goes against the very revelation as understood. Christ’s definitive and final revelation is within a Church that he himself insisted is a field of wheat and tares and will always carry some obscurity until the eschaton. Islam has it’s own eschatological story of ultimate manifestation that can only be anticipated by various sorts of struggle – and these struggles all require opposition to pure belief whether in ourselves or from others.
*More known than becoming incarnate and setting up an international institution that constitutes the largest religion of all time, that is.