Theology Ditty 5: “Does Special Revelation Exist Outside of the Bible?”

When God reveals some truth to us, be it during Bible study or prayer or even in some reflection on creation or life experiences, that truth in order to be special revelation must certainly align with existing Scripture (Deuteronomy 13:1-3) and must be a previously unknown truth. In this regard, much of what is proposed to be new insight or revelation in recent years is in fact false teaching meant to distract us from the worship of the true God and from obedience to His eternal precepts and requirements. So is that insight I had two days ago during quiet time really revelatory or something else?

Some insights are not revelatory, but merely inspiratory. Sometimes when we read and meditate on Scripture, we see something new, but not something not already known or revealed. Maybe we find a new reference to Christ in the Old Testament. Maybe we see a new connection in the wording or themes of two different biblical authors. Perhaps we find a refreshing hope or renewed joy from an obscure passage. These are not revelatory, in the sense that they tell us and all other believers something not previously understood. These have been revealed by the inspiration of the Spirit, but being not unique, are not equal to a new addendum to Scripture.

Some insights are not revelatory, but sadly contradictory to the tenor of previous revelation. Much of the re-interpretation that results from a reader-centered view falls in this category. Along with this heterodoxy, there is outright heresy as is seen in contemporary and recent cults, where major doctrines or whole passages are ignored or re-worked. In doing so, this “revelation” achieves nothing more than springboarding off the name or reputation of Christianity in order to promote a new (or old) alternative to true faith. It is this kind of insight that the Deuteronomy passage seeks to guard against. These are not revelatory because this “new light” often seeks not to support previous revelation, but undermine it.

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One Response to “Theology Ditty 5: “Does Special Revelation Exist Outside of the Bible?””

  1. Danny Says:

    Great insight. I had been waiting for a new post from you and this one was worth the wait. It is very important with all the “new” interpretations and “new” ways of seeing scripture. For instance Brain McLaren’s views on the Kingdom of God being a mostly social movement rather than mostly about redeeming lost souls.

    Keep the posts coming,
    Danny

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