Elizabeth Browning. “Earth’s crammed with heaven, and every common bush is afire with God; but only he who sees takes off his shoes; the rest sit round and pluck blackberries”.
God’s creation – a word for all? Psalm 19:3 “There is no speech or language where their voice is not heard.” Romans 1:20,25: “since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made…..they exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshipped and served created things rather than the Creator”.
The nature of revelation General revelation, creation, conscience, inner awareness of God….. Special revelation for those God chooses to address Karl Barth and special revelation –the revealed word of God – Jesus, –the written word of God – the Bible –the proclaimed word of God - preaching –God’s word of prophecy
Jesus – the revealed word of God John 1:1,4 “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God..…In him was life, and that life was the light of men..” John 14:9 “anyone who has seen me has seen the Father” Luke 10:22 “no one knows who the Father is except the Son and those to whom the Son chooses to reveal him.”
Scripture – the written word of God 2 Timothy 3:16 “All Scripture is God-breathed” 1 Peter 1:20 “Above all, you must understand that no prophecy of Scripture came about by the prophet’s own interpretation….men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.” 1 Corinthians 2:14 “the man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned.” Psalm 119:18 “Open my eyes that I may see wonderful things in your law.”
Preaching – the proclaimed word of God Romans 10:13-14 “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them?” 2 Timothy 3:16 [Scripture] “is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.” 2 Corinthians 5:19-20 “he has committed to us the message of reconciliation. We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us”
The prophetic word of God Hebrews 1:1 “In the past God spoke to our forefathers through the prophets at many times and in various ways, but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son.” 1 Corinthians 14:1 “Follow the way of love and eagerly desire spiritual gifts, especially the gift of prophecy” 1 Thessalonians 5:20-21 “do not treat prophecies with contempt. Test everything. Hold on to the good.”
The mystery of God’s revelation Job 12:22 “He reveals the deep things of darkness and brings deep shadows into the light.” Deuteronomy 29:29 “The secret things belong to the Lord our God, but the things revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may follow all the words of this law.”
Revelation of God’s attributes Independence Unchangeableness Timeless in his own being Omnipresence Unity Spirituality Invisibility Knowledge Wisdom Truthfulness Goodness Love Mercy Holiness Peace Justice Jealousy Wrath Will Freedom Omnipotence Perfection Blessedness Beauty Glory “the world through its wisdom did not know him” 1 Corinthians 1:21
Revelation of God’s attributes Eternity: “I am the Alpha and the Omega,” says the Lord God, “who is, and who was, and who is to come, the Almighty.” (Revelation 1:18) Presence everywhere: “Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence? If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there” (Psalm 139:7-8). Spirituality: “God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in spirit and in truth.” (John 4:24) All powerful nature: “him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine,” (Ephesians 3:20) Love: “God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” (Romans 5:8)
Revelation of God’s plan for humanity Luke 24:25-26 “How foolish you are, and how slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken! Did not the Christ have to suffer these things and then enter his glory?” And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he explained to them what was said in all the Scriptures concerning himself.
Revelation of God’s desire for a personal relationship with us 1 John 2:13 “I write to you, dear children, because you have known the Father.” John 14:23 “If anyone loves me, he will obey my teaching. My Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him.”
God reveals – will we listen? 1 Peter 5:7 “cast all our anxiety on him because he cares for us” Ephesians 1:17 “I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better.”