Understanding The Bible
Studying The Bible
"God's Self Revelation"

"Study To Show Yourself Approved Unto God,"  2 Timothy 2:15
J. Deering,

God's Self Revelation
Here's a brief outline of some of the ideas that the God of the Scriptures reveals about Himself and His world in His word.

  1. God is.
  2. God thought it would be good for us to know Him.
  3. God has revealed Himself in ways that are knowable, through:
    1. His creation
    2. Intuition
    3. Tradition
    4. Reason
    5. His Revelation
    6. His Son - Jesus Christ
    7. His word - Prophets - His Holy Spirit
  4. God has revealed that which He wants us to know
    1. He has not revealed everything humanly knowable
    2. He has not revealed everything
    3. He has revealed all that is necessary for Faith and Practice.
  5. His existence is knowable in His creation but His plans, especially His plan for salvation, are knowable only through direct revelation, and the revelation of His son, Jesus Christ.
  6. God is infinite and He is definable, but only to the limits of the finite mind and its comprehension of His revelation

Dr. Lewis Sperry Chafer, former president of Dallas Theological Seminary, has said:

"In the Scriptures, God is not specifically defined in any one assertion, but His existence and attributes are assumed and do appear only as the text in various places and in manifold terms sets forth what He is and what He does.  A true Biblical definition of God will be secured only as an induction of all the Scripture is secured." (Dr. Lewis Sperry Chafer, Systematic Theology, Vol. I., p. 188, Dallas Seminary Press, 1973)

The definition of God is not what we think about Him, it is instead that which He has revealed about Himself and, of course, much more.  He is not limited by our knowledge of Him.  And so is the nature of the study of His scriptures.  His revealed word is comprehendible because He has chosen to make it so.  He is a wonderful and loving God who wants His children to know Him.  The scriptures are, in some places, difficult to understand.  That is not because God does not want you to know those places.  Quite the contrary, His word is His revelation to us to know Him.  Some things are just hard to comprehend and require work, understanding, prayer, enlightenment, and more work.  God is not in the business of hiding His word from you.  It pleases Him for you to know Him.