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Don Stewart :: What Are Some of the Purposes for Special Revelation?

Don Stewart

There are a number of reasons why special revelation is necessary. They include the following.

1. It Provides A Foundation For All Doctrine

Special revelation is the foundation for all doctrine. The Bible says.

All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness. So that everyone who belongs to God may be proficient, equipped for every good work (2 Timothy 3:16,17).

Humanity could not know these truths of Christian doctrine by means of human reason.

2. Special Revelation Gives The Basis To Live The Christian Life

A person must have a doctrinal basis on which to live their life. This is discovered through the Word of God for it tells us what is right and what is wrong. Then a person goes about living out the truths of God's Word. Paul wrote.

But thanks be to God that, though you used to be slaves to sin, you wholeheartedly obeyed the form of teaching to which you were entrusted (Romans 6:17).

3. It Reveals The Person Of God

Divine revelation reveals the Person of the one, true God. Although God has revealed His existence through nature and the human conscience, it is only through special revelation that we know any specifics about Him. His attributes can only be known from what He has revealed to us. Therefore one of the purposes of special revelation is to inform us about God's character.

4. It Reveals Who We Are

Special revelation also reveals who we are as human beings. Humanity was created in the image of an infinite personal God

Then God said, "Let us make humankind in our image, according to our likeness; and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the wild animals of the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps upon the earth" (Genesis 1:26).

Without divine revelation we would not have any trustworthy account of our origins. We would merely be left to speculation and unprovable theories.

5. Special Revelation Tells Us Why We Are No Longer Perfect

Divine revelation informs us why we are no longer perfect. Humankind sinned and became separated from God (Genesis 3:1-24).

The Bible is a Book that exposes the sin of humanity. It shows sin as rebellion against God and something that will be judged. According to Scripture, sin is something abnormal. Humankind was not originally created the way we are today.

This Is Not A Book That Humans Would Write
Consequently the Bible is not a Book that humans would write if they could. Humanity would not make sin something awful but rather something normal and pleasurable. In fact, human beings, without the aid of divine revelation, make sinful behavior the norm. Sin is excused or redefined. This is why a revelation from God is absolutely necessary.

6. Special Revelation Reveals The Way Of Salvation Of Sinners

Divine revelation reveals the way of salvation for lost sinners. The Bible says that the ultimate purpose of God's revelation is to lead humanity into a saving knowledge of God through Jesus Christ. Paul wrote to Timothy.

And how from childhood you have known the sacred writings that are able to instruct you for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus (2 Timothy 3:15).

God became a human in the person of Jesus Christ and bridged the gap between Himself and lost humanity by His death on the cross. Paul wrote.

For he made him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in him (2 Corinthians 5:21).

Each individual is responsible before God and must personally receive Christ as his or her Savior.

That if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved; for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation (Romans 10:9,10).

Without divine revelation we would not know any of these things.

The salvation of lost sinners is the ultimate purpose of special revelation. God's Word, the Bible, is the only place where the way of salvation is found.

7. Special Revelation Tells Us That We Can Have A Relationship With God

Another important purpose of special revelation is to call humanity into a relationship with God. The Bible says.

And this is eternal life, that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent (John 17:3).

The Apostle Paul said that his goal was to know Jesus Christ.

That I may know him and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being conformed to his death (Philippians 3:10).

Summary

There are a number of reasons for God's special revelation to humanity. First, it is only the accurate basis of detailed knowledge about God and His universe. Special revelation tells us who God is. We know about His person and nature only from special revelation. God's revelation also informs us who we are as human beings. Special revelation also tells us that God created humanity perfect in the beginning. However when the first couple, Adam and Eve, sinned, this caused all of their descendants to be born with a sinful nature.

Scripture reveals the remedy for sin in the death of Jesus Christ. It emphasizes that believers can have a personal relationship with God through Jesus Christ. Understanding special revelation is therefore absolutely essential if anyone desires to know his or her origin, purpose, and destiny.

CONTENT DISCLAIMER:

The Blue Letter Bible ministry and the BLB Institute hold to the historical, conservative Christian faith, which includes a firm belief in the inerrancy of Scripture. Since the text and audio content provided by BLB represent a range of evangelical traditions, all of the ideas and principles conveyed in the resource materials are not necessarily affirmed, in total, by this ministry.

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