Sjolander Road Fellowship




Declaring the God of Unconditional Love

comments

the revelation of god

1/18/13 

In Christian Orthodoxy's way of thinking, the revelation of God comes through the church's interpretation of the divine text. The church representative- priest, preacher, minister, etc.- deciphers the sacred words and thus reveals God, His nature, plan, and requirements to the hearer. In that way each individual is supposedly required to experience the truth about God and thus come under the divine influence.

 

As a good friend noted recently, the true revelation of God comes from the inside, not from the outside. God doesn't need an outsider to reveal Himself to me or you. He is perfectly able to make Himself known without help. To the extent that we do not experience and know God, it is because we fail to recognize the fact that He is already present and active in our lives. Looking outside ourselves for a way to activate our relationship with God will only further divert us from the internal voice which carries the divine message that is perfectly tailored for our individual need.

 

The church's insistence that we cannot listen to our own heart in seeking God and instead must accept their God revelation is completely counter to the Bible. All the key characters in the Bible received a direct revelation. If these people learned by direct revelation, i.e. from the inside, why must I seek that revelation from the outside?

 

The church's insistence on honoring the Bible is an implicit admission of God's ability and willingness to reveal Himself without intermediaries. Supposedly, each writer in the Bible received a personal inspiration which prompted what they wrote.

 

Of course, the church will be quick to suggest that our heart and mind, the inside, is sin tainted and will just lead us astray in seeking God. Therefore, they insist that they must reveal the true divine Truth. They will have selected scriptures ready to refute the idea that anyone today could safely depend on internal sources of divine wisdom.

 

It is certainly possible or even probably that our minds would mislead us. That is especially true if we have been conditioned to accept a certain way of thinking without actually thinking about it, i.e. asking whether that thinking makes sense or not. Thus, the most likely scenario in which our minds mislead us is when we refuse to use them. In that respect the church promotes misguidance because they deeply oppose thinking about what they claim as the revelation of God.

 

Many of the voices inside my head are not that of God. I can be sure of that. Too much that crosses my mind in the course of the day is too obviously trite and mean spirited. That being noted, how could I ever trust any internal source as the voice of God? That becomes a particularly vital question when we encounter people who claim that God asked them to commit an atrocity.

 

I think it should be fairly easy to dismiss most of the non-divine messages in my own mind. I could simply measure what is being said or suggested by the Golden Rule or the principle of love. If the thought fails that test, then it can't be from God.

 

Interestingly, on this basis I am forced to reject the vast majority of what the church teaches and what the Bible, itself, illustrates. This note just reinforces, for me, the realization that I cannot trust outside sources, even those which claim to be divinely inspired or commissioned, to accurately convey for me the true message of God. If I can't trust my own heart and God's ability to speak to me directly and effectively, why would I ever trust another human being's mind and heart to serve as the conduit of God's revelation?

 

Any other human is subject to all the confusing and diverting ideas, beliefs, and thoughts which plague me in my search for God. Others may claim a divine calling or a special ministry, but what does that prove? It proves only that they deny my right and ability to receive a direct revelation equal to what they claim for themselves in their role as my God ordained instructor.

 

No, the idea that I must hear and obey outside instructors in order to know God is way too transparently false. It's a comforting thought for those who propose to be the world's only source of divine revelation, but it leaves the rest of us at the mercy of what has been proven totally unreliable. The revelation of God could never flow unaltered through the institutional church and its messengers. Any church you want to name admits as much about other churches. They just largely deny the same about themselves.