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Tuesday
Mar092010

Theological Term of the Week

special revelation
God’s self-disclosure in direct, supernatural revelation, disclosing truths, including the good news of salvation, that could not be known through general revelation.

  • From scripture:

    Long ago, at many times and in many ways, God spoke to our fathers by the prophets, but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son…. (Hebrews 1:1-2a ESV)

    Now I would remind you, brothers, of the gospel I preached to you, which you received, in which you stand, and by which you are being saved, if you hold fast to the word I preached to you—unless you believed in vain. For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures (1 Corinthians 15:1-3 ESV)
  • From The Belgic Confession, 1561, Article 2:
    The Means by Which We Know God

    We know him by two means:

    …Secondly, he makes himself more clearly fully known to us by his holy and divine Word, that is to say, as far as is necessary for us to know in this life, to his glory and our salvation.
  • From ESV Study Bible, Biblical Doctrine: An Overview: The Bible and Revelation:

    …[G]eneral revelation does not provide knowledge of the only true solution to man’s guilt before God: the forgiveness of sins that comes through Jesus Christ. This means that general revelation does not provide personal knowledge of God as a loving father who redeems his people and establishes covenants with them. For this, one needs special revelation, which God has provided in his historical supernatural activities, in the Bible, and definitively in Jesus Christ.

    The Bible is God’s God’s written revelation of who he is and what he has done in redemptive History. Humans need this divine, transcendent perspective in order to break out of their subjective, culturally bound, fallen limitations. Through God’s written Word, his people may overcome error, grow in sanctification, minister effectively to others, and live abundant lives as God intends.

  • From The Starry Firmament on High by Robert Grant

    The starry firmament on high,
    And all the glories of the sky,
    Yet shine not to Thy praise, O Lord,
    So brightly as Thy written Word.

    The hopes that holy Word supplies,
    Its truths divine and precepts wise,
    In each a heavenly beam I see,
    And every beam conducts to Thee.

    Almighty Lord, the sun shall fail,
    The moon forget her nightly tale,
    And deepest silence hush on high,
    The radiant chorus of the sky.

    But, fixed, for everlasting years,
    Unmoved amid the wreck of spheres,
    Thy Word shall shine in cloudless day,
    When Heaven and earth have passed away.

Learn more:

  1. Don Stewart: What Is Special Revelation?
  2. GotQuestions.org: What is general revelation and special revelation?
  3. Christian Research and Apologetics Ministry: What is general and special revelation?
  4. Christianity 101 (Gospel Outreach Ministries Online):  Special Revelation
  5. J. Hampton Keathley III: The Bible: The Written Word of God

Do you have a a theological term you’d like to see featured here as a Theological Term of the Week? If you email it to me, I’ll seriously consider using it.

I’m also interested in any suggestions you have for tweaking my definitions or for additional (or better) articles or sermons/lectures for linking. I’ll give you credit and a link back to your blog if I use your suggestion.

Clicking on the Theological Term graphic at the top of this post will take you to a list of all the previous theological terms organized in alphabetical order or by topic.

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References (1)

References allow you to track sources for this article, as well as articles that were written in response to this article.

Reader Comments (2)

There are a lot of good articles here: http://www.monergism.com/directory/

I do not know if that would be helpful to you or not, but I have found it a very good source of reference.

March 10, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterLori S.

Thanks Lori.

I used monergism for some of the info and links for this post. :)

March 10, 2010 | Registered Commenterrebecca

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