In what way does God reveal himself to us? Why would God give us his Word and not give us evidence that enables us to trust?
Revelation is the divine act of God revealing Himself to man. God has revealed Himself to us in two ways: through general revelation and special revelation. Sometimes general and specific revelation are also referred to as natural and supernatural or original and soteriological revelation.
General revelation refers to the act of God revealing Himself to us in a general way. He has revealed Himself through the creation of the world and universe (Psalm 19:1). They reveal and declare that God exists. Otherwise, how did the universe come into existence from nothing and become arranged as it is?
The heavens are telling of the glory of God; and their expanse is declaring the work of His hands. Psalm 19:1 (NASB)
. . . 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. For even though they knew God, they did not honor Him as God or give thanks, but they became futile in their speculations, and their foolish heart was darkened. Romans 1:19-21 (NASB)
The rains, seasons, and the beauty of the world are indicators – hints – that God exists.
In the generations gone by He permitted all the nations to go their own ways; and yet He did not leave Himself without witness, in that He did good and gave you rains from heaven and fruitful seasons, satisfying your hearts with food and gladness. Acts 14:16-17 (NASB)
God’s existence is generally revealed through the creation, including the earth. What is the message of these verses? Since the earth, our solar system, and the universe were made by God, they are also hints that He exists. The design, perfection, and mystery of the universe reveal that something or someone greater than us exists – God.
God has also written a moral standard into our minds. Why does the vast majority of people know that it is wrong to kill others, to steal, and commit other crimes? Some years ago a man told me that there were no moral absolutes. So I asked if he would be angry if I murdered his girl friend. He responded by telling me that would be wrong. I then replied, “Oh, a moral absolute does exist!” This is the work of God. God has written a moral code into our consciences. That is the message of the following passage.
For when Gentiles who do not have the Law do instinctively the things of the Law, these, not having the Law, are a law to themselves, in that they show the work of the Law written in their hearts, their conscience bearing witness and their thoughts alternately accusing or else defending them . . . Romans 2:14-15 (NASB)
Therefore, we are without excuse. Those who claim that God does not exist are ignoring the subtle revelation of the creation and their own conscience. God’s moral law is contained within us and His creation declares that He exists.
Since the creation will not give us specific revelation, that is, specific or special information about God, He has given us the Bible which are His words to us. The Bible provides us with very specific information about God Himself. As a result, we can know more about Him and spiritual life. Consider these passages,
Then beginning with Moses and with all the prophets, He explained to them the things concerning Himself in all the Scriptures. Luke 24:27 (NASB)
Now He said to them, “These are My words which I spoke to you while I was still with you, that all things which are written about Me in the Law of Moses and the Prophets and the Psalms must be fulfilled.” Luke 24:44 (NASB)
. . . which He promised beforehand through His prophets in the holy Scriptures . . . who was born of a descendant of David according to the flesh, who was declared the Son of God with power by the resurrection from the dead, according to the Spirit of holiness, Jesus Christ our Lord . . . Romans 1:2-4 (NASB)
All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work. 2 Timothy 3:16-17 (NASB)
The Bible reveals that God is holy and we are not. We are disobedient when we do not obey God. That is, we sin. We are all sinners (Romans 3:23) and consequently, we deserve spiritual death (Romans 6:23), that is, eternal punishment and separation from God. But our God became a man in the person of Jesus Christ for the purpose of dying on a cross so that He could rescue us from eternal punishment. He did His part. Now He calls us to believe in Jesus Christ, His death and resurrection to pay the penalty for our sin, to turn from our sins, and allow Him to take control of our lives.
Historians have written about Jesus Christ. We would encourage you to visit the section called “Historical Jesus.” There you will find ancient testimony about Him. In the section called “Prophecies About Jesus” you will find some rather amazing predictions about Jesus. When you have read all of this, the real question is are you really interested in finding God? I trust that you are. If so, consider these statements from the Bible:
And if you seek Him, He will let you find Him; but if you forsake Him, He will forsake you. 2 Chronicles 15:2 (NASB)
You will seek Me and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart. “I will be found by you.” declares the LORD . . . Jeremiah 29:13-14a
Seek the LORD while He may be found;
Call upon Him while He is near. Isaiah 55:6 (NASB)
This is an invitation to discover God and to pursue Him through the rest of your life. God wants you to seek Him, to know Him.
Suggested Links:What Is The Bible? – revelation, inspiration, and inerrancy
What books belong in the Bible? – Canon of Scripture
Why doesn’t God unmistakably show Himself?
What does it mean that the Bible is inspired? – Inspiration of Scripture
Who Is God?
Prophecies About Jesus