Updated: Nov 8, 2019
Have you ever pondered this? The answer is simple.
God wants us to know Him so He reveals Himself to us.
God shows us who He is and how He works through events, in creation and in our hearts. The term for this is “revelation” and it simply means God’s self-disclosure.
There are two types of revelation from God and they are General Revelation and Special Revelation.
General Revelation is when God reveals Himself to us through creation and in our conscience.
The heavens are telling of the glory of God; and their expanse is declaring the work of His hands.
Psalm 19:1 (NASB)
They know the truth about God because he has made it obvious to them. For ever since the world was created, people have seen the earth and sky. Through everything God made, they can clearly see his invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature. So they have no excuse for not knowing God.
Romans 1:19-20 (NLT)
Or as R.C. Sproul stated it, “The universe is God’s handiwork. It sparkles with the revelation of its Maker.”
It is God’s revelation when you witness a beautiful powerful waterfall. When you see a vibrant sunset full of reds and oranges over the ocean. When you see a majestic snow-peaked mountain. When a hummingbird flits around your head whirling its wings so fast and not moving, hovering in the air. When you look up at the expanse of the skies and see countless stars brilliantly twinkling. When you hold your child in the quiet of the night and become overwhelmed with her creation and life. When you hold a sweet furry puppy and he licks your face and breathes puppy breath all over you. Here is the thing. You know there is a God in those moments. You are overcome with His presence. Some people can squash that knowledge. They can dismiss it. But it doesn’t make it any less real that it exists. They knew Him even if only for a moment. And they have no excuse.
The fool says in his heart, “There is no God.” Psalm 14:1a (NIV)
God reveals Himself in our conscience. Every society and culture knows right from wrong. We know it. Again, we can dismiss it, ignore it, justify our actions; but we know it. We instinctively know moral code in our conscience.
Even Gentiles, who do not have God’s written law, show that they know his law when they instinctively obey it, even without having heard it. They demonstrate that God’s law is written in their hearts, for their own conscience and thoughts either accuse them or tell them they are doing right. Romans 2:14-15 (NLT)
God is pursuing us. We are aware of it. Something within us tells us there is a God.
Sadly, just believing God exists isn’t enough to transform our lives or change our circumstances. It isn’t enough to alter our eternity. Scripture tells us that even the demons know He exists.
You believe that God is one; you do well. Even the demons believe—and shudder! James 2:19 (ESV)
And when Jesus casts out the demons in Matthew chapter 8, verse 29 tells us:
“What do you want with us, Son of God?” they shouted. “Have you come here to torture us before the appointed time?” (NIV)
Even the demons recognize the Son of God. Just believing He exists isn’t enough.
General Revelation discloses to all people His existence, His power and His moral attributes. He discloses this to us through creation and moral nature.
General Revelation is not saving revelation.
Special Revelation is God revealing His character, His will, and His acts to His people.
Special Revelation is saving revelation.
God speaks by the Holy Spirit to reveal Himself, His purposes, and His ways to His people:
Through the Bible
Through the church and believers
God is the only one capable and willing to change the outcome of your life. Only He can transform your life into an abundant life. Jesus said, “I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.” The number one way God will speak to you is through hearing and reading His Word. The writers of the Bible use some form of the expression, “The Lord says,” over three thousand times! God has a lot to tell us. If we will only listen.
Who doesn’t want to know what the holy, powerful, almighty, merciful God of the universe has to say for their lives? Open your Bible. Let Him speak.