Revelation and Inspiration
How We Received the Word then and now.
There are two basic areas concerning God’s Word that we will talk about today. REVELATION and INSPIRATION.
What’s the difference between revelation and inspiration?
Let us take these big words and break them down into simple language.
2 Timothy 3:16 (AV)
16 All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:
o What is scripture? –
o it is divine ideas wrapped up in human words
o it is the wisdom of God wrapped in a human vehicle – words
o What is inspiration?
o DEFINITION: – ‘God-breathed’ – it is how we received the Bible.
o How did the process of inspiration take place?
2 Peter 1:21 (AV)
21 For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost.
o The Bible was received by inspiration of God. Holy men spoke and what they spoke was recorded under the influence and direction of God.
o That is what this book, the Bible, is – it is a collection of God-breathed information.
What is Revelation?
o Revelation is the reverse process of inspiration
o Revelation is the process of extracting the divine from the human.
o It is how we get the God’s divine ideas of out of these humanly recorded words.
Basic Thoughts on Revelations from God
o Revelation truths are not new truths.
o There is no such thing as new truths.
o If it is new it’s not true, and if it’s true, it’s not new.
o There is such a thing as freshly discovered truth, or freshly applied truth, or freshly revealed truth, but there is no such thing as new truth.
Ecclesiastes 1:9 (ESV)
9 What has been is what will be, and what has been done is what will be done, and there is nothing new under the sun.
o That is why we receive truth by revelation – revelation implies by its very nature seeing something that is already there but not in plain sight.
Let us get even more basic:
Inspiration is how we got it – collectively or generally.
Revelation is you how you get it – individually or specifically.
The Road to Revelation starts with Knowing What the Bible Is
o The Bible is God speaking to me.
o Until you believe that the God that sits in heaven
had a book written that you and I could find our way
to heaven and also help us as we were having to live
life on this earth – until you actually believe that
you will never do very much with this book.
o Unless you really realize that this book is more
important than what TV talk shows teaches, more potent than anything that Harvard has to say or any other major university, more current than CBS, ABC, & NBC, and has more wisdom than all the libraries of the world put together, until you realize that this is the most important book on this planet, you’ll never give
yourself to it.
o In our lives in the 21st century, we simply do not have time for stuff that is not important!
o The Bible is a Book of Covenants
o Particularly two covenants. Notice the words, ‘New’ & ‘Old’ testament or covenant in your Bible.
o A covenant is a contract or an agreement between two parties (a mortgage is a contract or covenant, marriage is a covenant).
o These covenants are blood covenants.
o If you desire to know God well, study the ‘Blood Covenant’. It will open up the entire Bible to you.
o Study the New Testament First
o If there is a new and the new replaces the old, then it is obvious which part you should study first.
o Do not major on the old – major on the new. I did not say do not read the Old Testament. I said do not major on it.
o If you learn in life to major on the majors and minor on the minors you will avoid many pitfalls.
Breaking Down The New Testament
o The New Testament contains 27 books divided as follows:
o Five books of history – Matthew through Acts
o The Gospels
o Matthew, Mark, Luke and John are really not part of the New Testament!
o You will understand this better, if you study the Blood Covenant,
o The New Covenant really starts with Calvary. Calvary is depicted at the end of the gospels. Consequently, what occurs before Calvary is under the Old Covenant.
o In fact, if all you had was the gospels to go by, you would never be able to come to Jesus. You would not know about the new birth. Now, you think that you would because you’ve read or heard the rest of the New Testament.
o The Book of Acts
o Acts means deeds or works. Deeds performed by the Holy Ghost thru born again men.
o Twenty One Letters
o The Epistles
o Romans Through Jude
o Letters were written to born again groups of people,
called churches, or to individual born again people like Timothy, Titus, Philemon.
o In these epistles or letters, the born again, experience, the born again life and lifestyle, the covenant that we have because we are born again is discussed at great length.
o If you want to learn about your covenant with God, you are not going to learn about it in the Old Testament, or the gospels, or even Acts – you are going to learn about the born again life it in the letters written to born again people.
Get Your Covenant Thinking Straight.
o People float around and are not specific enough in their pursuit of God.
o If you want to be healed, get specific. You need to read healing scriptures, you do not need to read Noah and the ark. Noah and the ark will not get you healed.
o If you want to find out what happened to you the day you were born again, get specific and read those portions of scripture (the epistles) that deal with your new covenant with God.
o Now, we know where we should start. And so I pick up my KJV Bible and I begin to read and I read a few verses and don’t have the foggiest idea what the Lord
is saying, And so I keep reading, and I’m just not getting anything out of what I am reading, And so maybe I start feeling insecure, and I wonder if I have enough education, or am I good enough and all these thoughts of insecurity flood my mind. What should I do? Understand that the road to revelation does not just include knowing what the Bible is but also knowing what it isn’t!
The Road to Revelation Includes Knowing What the Bible Is Not
o The Bible is not an intellectual book
o You do not understand the Bible as you do the multiplication table. The Bible cannot be mentally understood.
o If it was mentally understood, then those who are highly educated should understand the Bible more; high schoolers more than grade schoolers; college students more than high school students; Masters candidates more than college, Doctoral students more than Masters candidates. It is simply not true, the Bible is spiritually understood NOT mentally understood.
o What do I do then when I am I am having trouble understanding a portion of God’s Word? You bow your head, pray, and invite the Holy Spirit, the great teacher of the church, to come and show you the Word.
o When you come to something that you don’t understand, keep reading and keep trusting.
o Also remember it is what you do consistently, every day, over the long haul that will get you were you need to be in God.
o The Bible is not an amulet, charm, or fetish
o God does not work by magic. He is not magic wand God.
o If God was a magic wand God, then all He should have done was wave it and have His people not endure Egyptian bondage for 400 years! If God was a magic wand God, Paul would not have experienced prison nor would you personally go through any trial that you have faced. Just wave the wand and puff, all your problems disappear!!!
o Successful spiritual life on planet earth is knowing the Word, following His Spirit, and then walking it out; all the while understanding that the will of God is victory in every case.
o The Bible is Not a Book that will work wonders by itself.
o It takes faith and cooperation with the Spirit to work wonders.
o The Bible is also not a…
o … a book of chronological events.
o … an unbroken series of utterances (the Bible was given piecemeal over 1800 years and yet has perfect unity)
o … a book that says one think and means another. (God says what He means and means what He says – our problem is lining up our thinking to think like He thinks.)
General Admonitions and Thoughts on the Bible
o Don’t Be Afraid To Ask Questions
o What the Lord said to me years ago.
o It is how you learn when you don’t understand something. Ask the Lord questions.
o Take it one verse at a time.
o Do not speed read the Bible!
o Do not cram the Bible.
o Think of the Bible as you would physical food. If you cram physical food one day and do not eat for the next two weeks, you will not do well.
o Always remember it is better to understand one verse of scripture and obey it then it is to read 10 chapters and be dumb.
Statistics On Reading Time
o Many of God’s people think, they do not have the time to read the Bible.
o It takes 70 hours and 40 minutes to read the Bible through.
o It takes 52 hours and 20 minutes to read the Old Testament.
o It takes the 18 hours and 20 minutes to read the New Testament.
o In the Old Testament, the Psalms take the longest to read at 4 hours and 28 minutes.
o In the New Testament, the Gospel of Luke is the longest read at 2 hours and 43 minutes.
o You can read any of the Gospels in the time it takes to watch a good movie.
Hopefully, this will help us become more active and disciplined in our desire to Know God.