What is revelation?

God making Himself known to us for relationship.

General Revelation

Available to all people, times, places = less specific

  • Creation – Romans 1:19-20 – …what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse.
  • Conscience – Romans 2:14-15 – …when Gentiles, who do not have the law, by nature do what the law requires, they are a law to themselves, even though they do not have the law. They show that the work of the law is written on their hearts, while their conscience also bears witness, and their conflicting thoughts accuse or even excuse them.
  • Providence – Acts 14:17 – …he did not leave himself without witness, for he did good by giving you rains from heaven and fruitful seasons, satisfying your hearts with food and gladness.

Special Revelation

Available to some people = more clarity about Jesus

  • Supernatural – Dreams, visions, angels
  • Jesus – Hebrews 1:1-2 – Long ago, at many times and in many ways, God spoke to our fathers by the prophets, but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son…
  • Scripture – 2 Timothy 3:16 – All Scripture is breathed out by God…

What are the Scriptures?

  • 66 books (39 OT, 27 NT)
  • Scripture = “writing”; Bible = “book”; Holy Bible = Holy Book
  • Library (history, sermons, letters, songs, architecture, travel diaries, family trees, legal)
  • Written over 1500 years, roughly 40 authors in 3 languages
  • Multicultural – writers in Asia, Africa, Europe

What Does Jesus Say About the Scriptures?

  • Matthew 5:17-18 – “Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. For truly, I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot, will pass from the Law until all is accomplished.”

Many Human Authors

  • Ezekiel 24:1-2 – In the ninth year, in the tenth month, on the tenth day of the month, the word of the Lord came to me: “Son of man, write down…”
  • Jeremiah 36:4 – Then Jeremiah called Baruch the son of Neriah, and Baruch wrote on a scroll at the dictation of Jeremiah all the words of the LORD that he had spoken to him.

One Divine Author

  • 1 Peter 1:10-12 – …the prophets who prophesied about the grace that was to be yours searched and inquired carefully, inquiring what person or time the Spirit of Christ in them was indicating when he predicted the sufferings of Christ and the subsequent glories. It was revealed to them that they were serving not themselves but you, in the things that have now been announced to you through those who preached the good news to you by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven, things into which angels long to look.
  • 2 Timothy 3:16 – All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work.

Prophecy Proves the Bible

  • (700 B.C.) Isaiah 7:14 – “Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel.”
  • (700 B.C.) Micah 5:2 – But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah, though you are small among the clans of Judah, out of you will come for me one who will be ruler over Israel, whose origins are from of old, from ancient times [eternity].
  • (400 B.C.) Malachi 3:1 – “…I will send my messenger, who will prepare the way before me. Then suddenly the Lord you are seeking will come to his temple; the messenger of the covenant, whom you desire, will come,” says the LORD Almighty.
  • (1000 B.C.) Psalm 22:16 – Dogs have surrounded me; a band of evil men has encircled me, they have pierced my hands and my feet.
  • (500 B.C.) Zechariah 11:12–13 – …they paid me 30 pieces of silver. And the LORD said to me, “Throw it to the potter”—the handsome price at which they priced me! So I took the thirty pieces of silver and threw them into the house of the LORD to the potter.
  • (1000 B.C.) Psalm 16:10 – …you will not abandon me to the grave, nor will you let your Holy One see decay.

How did we get our English Bible?

God —> Revelation/Inspiration —> Transmission —> Translation —> Interpretation —> Application —> Your Life

Why are there different Bible translations?

  1. Word-for-Word (ESV, KJV, NKJV, NASB)
  2. Thought-for-Thought (NIV, NLT, CEV)
  3. Paraphrase (Message, Living, Amplified, Voice)
  4. Corruption (New World)

6 Misconceptions about the Bible

1. “The Bible has been edited by too many people.”

2. “The Bible is full of contradictions.”

3. “The New Testament was largely written by people who didn’t even know Jesus.”

      • 1 John 1:1-2 – That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we looked upon and have touched with our hands, concerning the word of life – the life was made manifest, and we have seen it, and testify to it and proclaim to you.

4. “There are some stories that are kept in and some stories that were kicked out.”

      • 2 Peter 3:15-16 – And count the patience of our Lord as salvation, just as our beloved brother Paul also wrote to you according to the wisdom given him, as he does in all his letters when he speaks in them of these matters. There are some things in them that are hard to understand, which the ignorant and unstable twist to their own destruction, as they do the other Scriptures.

5. “Christianity borrowed from ancient religions.”

      • 2 Peter 1:20-21 – “…no prophecy of Scripture comes from someone’s own interpretation. For no prophecy was ever produced by the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.”

6. “The Bible is old and outdated.”

People have a seemingly insatiable appetite for information and communication. From cell phones to televisions, e-mail, radios, smart phones, Websites, blogs, social media, meetings, online video chats, books, magazines, newspapers, movies, songs, text-messages, face- to-face conversations, etc., people want to know and be known. Why? Our God communicates, as Genesis 1 tells us no less than ten times, “God said” and made us in His likeness to communicate with Him and each other.

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