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THEOLOGY > Bible > Revelation > Revelation was Supernatural


Scripture never debates God; it merely affirms God—God is. To think differently is to be characterized by intellectual foolishness (Ps. 14:1; 53:1), which is indicative of moral deficiency (Ps. 10:4; see: The Foolishness of Atheism).

If God is God, then the possibility of Revelation must be accepted. According to Scripture, God is an Existing Being, capable of communication; therefore, the possibility of Revelation resides in what it means for God to be God. Revelation is possible because God exists. To accept God is to accept the possibility, and the probability, of Divine Revelation (see: Foundations).

Assuming God’s existence, why would He give to man a Revelation? Why would the Creator communicate with the creature? If Revelation is possible, then why is it probable? If man is to know God and if man is to know himself, God must give the Revelation; thus, there are two considerations:

One, if man is to have an adequate conception of God, God must reveal himself. Man does not have the ability to reach up to God, to find God, to investigate God, to analyze God, to come to know God if left alone in his searching. Man, since Eden, is a captive of his own intellectual and moral darkness (see: Darkened Image). And the darkness means that man's thinking is perverted (see: Perverted Thinking).

For the creature to know the Creator, the Creator must reveal Himself to the creature. By definition the two are distinct, and the one is dependent upon the Other, the creature upon the Creator, man upon God. True knowledge of the Creator by the creature is contingent upon the Creator making Himself known. Descartes said that the idea of God may be caused by God. Irenaeus wrote: “The Lord taught us that no one can know God unless God Himself be the teacher; that is, without God, God cannot be known.” Only God can reveal God.

God’s Revelation is not dependent upon human desire for His Revelation nor is the Revelation in response to man’s search for such Revelation, for man left to himself does not seek God. The initiative is with Him; it does not come because it is asked for or because man wills it (II Pet. 1:21). It comes because God is gracious.

Two, if man is to have an understanding of himself, God must give the explanation. If man is to know the reason for his existence, the plight of his existence, and the hope of his existence, God must give a Revelation of these things. The Creator knows the creature, and only the Creator can explain the creature to the creature. Only God can explain man. within man is not the capacity for self-understanding.

Numerous authors testify to the fact that what they received came by Revelation from God. They affirm that there is a Revelation and that it is from God. Through Isaiah God said: “I have proclaimed and . . . you are My witnesses” (43:12). According to Daniel, “there is a God in heaven who reveals secrets” (2:28); Chapter Ten of Daniel records that “a message was revealed to Daniel . . . the message was true” (v. 1). According to Amos, God “declares to man what His thought is” (4:13) and will do nothing “unless He reveals His secrets to His servants the prophets” (3:7). Habakkuk said he received “the burden” (1:1) and was told to “write the vision and make it plain on tablets” (2:2). In reference to the Gospel he preached, Paul avows: “I neither receive it from man, nor was I taught it; but it came through the revelation of Jesus Christ” (Gal. 1:12). In Ephesians he speaks of a mystery that had been made known to him “by revelation” (3:3). According to these testimonies, man has not been left without a word from God.

In the Revelation God revealed information; He revealed mysteries, and He revealed His thoughts. Not only did God reveal mysteries, His thoughts, and the gospel to men, but He instructed them to write the Revelation down. That which was revealed was inscribed; what was given was recorded.

To refuse to accept the claim of supernatural Revelation from God that comprises Scripture is to reveal an attitude that does not take seriously the plain statements of Scripture. From beginning to end the Bible asserts that it is from God. Nothing is more obvious and unambiguous. Rejection of Scripture’s claim raises foundational questions:

* How can someone deem the Bible to be significant when that person rejects the Bible’s affirmations of its own origin?

* How can other statements of Scripture be treated with credibility?

* If all the statements are not from God when they are claimed by Scripture to be from God, how can anyone with confidence believe that any other statements in the Bible are from God?

* Who determines what is from God and what is not from God?

* Who establishes the criteria? Is not any guideline that is followed dependent upon man’s reasoning?

* And how can man be sure that his reasoning is right?

* How could anyone take the Bible seriously after rejecting its most basic claim?

All that is taught in Scripture is predicated upon Scripture’s own unique origin—a Revelation from God. All the teaching of the Bible is anchored in this crucial fact; and all that is taught about God, creation, man, sin, redemption, and eternity is taught with the affirmation that God has said all these things. All the teaching is the Truth because God, who is true, has revealed this Truth.

Intellectual schizophrenia is the diagnosis of one who seeks to expound Scripture and who would at the same rejects Scripture’s foundational claim. To deny that God Himself gave the Scriptures is to disqualify oneself from being capable of properly understanding the Scriptures. One’s attitude towards the origination of Scripture conditions one’s approach to the exegesis and exposition of the Scriptures.

For prophecy never came by the will of man,
but holy men of God spoke
as they were move by the Holy Spirit.
II Pet. 1:21

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