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Don Stewart :: How Has God Personally Revealed Himself to People?

Don Stewart

The ultimate purpose of all revelation from God is so that human beings can have a personal relationship with their Creator. The Bible speaks of a God who not only exists He is also personally involved in the lives of His people. Consequently we find, in both testaments, the record of God making a personal appearance to individuals. The following are some of the examples.

Adam And Eve

When Adam and Eve first sinned in the Garden of Eden God immediately spoke to them.

They heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and the man and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God among the trees of the garden. Then the Lord God called to the man, and said to him, "Where are you?" (Genesis 3:8,9).

Noah

God revealed Himself to Noah and told him of the impending Flood.

So God said to Noah, "I am going to put an end to all people, for the earth is filled with violence because of them. I am surely going to destroy both them and the earth" (Genesis 6:13).

Abraham

God revealed Himself to Abraham on a number of occasions. God initially called him out of his own country.

The LORD had said to Abram, "Leave your country, your people and your father's household and go to the land I will show you. I will make you into a great nation and I will bless you; I will make your name great, and you will be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse; and all peoples on earth will be blessed through you" (Genesis 12:1-3).

Because of the many encounters Abraham was called a friend of God.

Isaac

Isaac, the son of Abraham, received personal revelation from God.

That night the LORD appeared to him [Isaac] and said, "I am the God of your father Abraham. Do not be afraid, for I am with you; I will bless you and will increase the number of your descendants for the sake of my servant Abraham" (Genesis 26:24).

Jacob

Jacob had personal visits from God on a number of occasions.

There beside him stood the LORD and said: "I am the LORD, the God of your father Abraham and the God of Isaac. I will give you and your descendants the land on which you are lying" (Genesis 28:13).

Joseph

The Lord personally spoke to Joseph in a dream.

Joseph had a dream, and when he told it to his brothers, they hated him all the more (Genesis 37:5).

Moses

God appeared to the deliverer Moses on numerous occasions. Once he spoke to Moses in the burning bush.

There the angel of the LORD appeared to him in flames of fire from within a bush. Moses saw that though the bush was on fire it did not burn up (Exodus 3:2).

In this revelation God reveals himself as a person.

Moses said to God, "Suppose I go to the Israelites and say to them, 'The God of your fathers has sent me to you,' and they ask me, 'What is his name?' Then what shall I tell them?" God said to Moses, "I AM WHO I AM," and he said, "Thus you shall say to the children of Israel, "I AM has sent me to you' (Exodus 3:14).

God talked with Moses as one talks to a friend.

The LORD would speak to Moses face to face, as a man speaks with his friend. Then Moses would return to the camp, but his young aide Joshua son of Nun did not leave the tent (Exodus 33:11).

Gideon

The Lord appeared to the judge Gideon.

Now on the same night the Lord said to him, "Take the bull of your father and a second bull seven years old, and pull down the altar of Baal which belongs to your father, and cut down the Asherah that is beside it" (Judges 6:25).

Samuel

Samuel, the prophet and judge, had a visit from the Lord when he was a young man.

It happened at that time as Eli was lying down in his place. Now his eyesight had begun to grow dim and he could not see well, and the lamp of God had not yet gone out, and Samuel was lying down in the temple of the Lord where the ark of God was, that the Lord called Samuel; and he said, "Here I am" (1 Samuel 3:2-4).

David

God personally appeared to David when he was running from Saul.

Then David said, "O Lord God of Israel, your servant has heard for certain that Saul is seeking to come to Keilah to destroy the city on my account. Will the men of Keilah surrender me into his hand? Will Saul come down just as your servant has heard? O Lord God of Israel, I pray, tell your servant." And the Lord said, "He will come down" (1 Samuel 23:10,12).

Elijah

When he was running from King Ahab, God spoke to Elijah the prophet in a still small voice.

The word of the LORD came to him, saying, "Go from here and turn eastward, and hide yourself by the Wadi Cherith, which is east of the Jordan" (1 Kings 17:2,3).

Isaiah

The prophet Isaiah received a revelation concerning the holiness of the Lord

Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, "Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?" And I said, "Here am I; send me" (Isaiah 6:8).

New Testament Examples Of God Revealing Himself

In the New Testament we also find God revealing Himself to individuals. They are as follows.

The Life Of Jesus Christ

Jesus Christ is the eternal God who became a human being. When Jesus was here on earth, He personally spent time with His disciples as well as with a number of other people. Apart from the gospels, the New Testament records God personally speaking to the following people.

Paul

The Lord personally spoke to Saul of Tarsus on the Damascus Road. At that time he was converted to the Apostle Paul.

He fell to the ground and heard a voice saying to him, "Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me?" He asked, "Who are you, Lord?" The reply came, "I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting" (Acts 9:4-6).

Peter

God personally appeared to Peter in a vision to show him that Gentiles (non-Jews) were to be allowed in the New Testament church.

Then a voice told him, "Get up, Peter. Kill and eat." "Surely not, Lord!" Peter replied. "I have never eaten anything impure or unclean." The voice spoke to him a second time, "Do not call anything impure that God has made clean" (Acts 10:13-15).
The Church At Antioch

The Bible records the Lord speaking to the believers at the church in Antioch.

In the church at Antioch there were prophets and teachers: Barnabas, Simeon called Niger, Lucius of Cyrene, Manaen (who had been brought up with Herod the tetrarch) and Saul. While they were worshiping the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, "Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them" (Acts 13:1,2).

John

When the Apostle John was on the Isle of Patmos the Lord revealed Himself to him.

The revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave him to show his servants what must soon take place. He made it known by sending his angel to His servant John (Revelation 1:1).

Consequently, in both testaments, we find the personal God revealing Himself to humanity.

Summary

The Scripture testifies that God has revealed Himself personally to a number of different people on various occasions. In the Old Testament times he appeared to such people as Adam and Eve, Noah, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph, Moses, Gideon, Samuel, David, Elijah and Isaiah.

In the New Testament we find that God became a human being in the person of Jesus Christ. While here on earth He personally spoke to multitudes of people. After His Ascension into heaven, Jesus spoke to certain individuals on special occasions. They include Paul, Peter, and John.

This gives further evidence that God has a personal interest in the lives of human beings.

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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