Monday, August 20, 2007

Reason and Revelation: Revelation (Part 2)

There are many sources of revelation. Here are but a few.

The Creation
"For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, because that which is known about God is evident within them; for God made it evident to them. For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes , His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse." (Romans 1:18-20)
One of the sources of revelation is the world around us. We can receive revelation through our study, observation, and experience of God's creation. Many great advances and discoveries have been the result of observing and experiencing nature. This picture shows Sir Isaac Newton "discovering" gravity by watching an apple fall from a tree. While I don't know if it is true that the apple actually hit him on the head, the story persists that it was by watching apples fall that Newton pondered and formed his ideas on gravity. The experience of the falling apple was like a spark that ignited his curiosity and his existing knowledge and lead him to profound understanding of gravity.

The revelation we can gain from the world around us is not limited to knowledge of this present creation. It is also possible to gain knowledge of God through our study of his handiwork. God Himself has left clues to His existence and His nature in all that he has made. When we look and experience His creation, it is as if His very voice is speaking to us, giving us revelation of who He is.
"The heavens are telling of the glory of God; and their expanse is declaring the work of His hands. Day to day pours forth speech, and night to night reveals knowledge. There is no speech, nor are there words; their voice is not heard. Their line has gone out through all the earth, and their utterances to the end of the world." (Psalms 19:1-4)
The truth of God is evident all around us, it we are only willing to see and acknowledge it. To grow in knowledge, we need more than a mere academic approach to life. We must not only observe but we must also experience the world around us. I had a friend that was an anthropology student. However, when he got saved he left the university and wrote all his class mates telling them that he had studied life long enough and now it was his turn to live it. There is a revelation that is only gained when we participate in life. This is why Jesus said,
"But go and learn what this means: 'I desire compassion, and not sacrifice,' for I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners.'" (Matthew 9:13)
It is not enough to simply study the laws of nature, we need to experience them as well. Jesus said, "go and learn", not "study and learn". The world around us holds mysteries untold, but when we engage life it opens up to us the finner revelations that it holds.

More to come... David Robison

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