Modern day revelation or the Word of God?
Published 9:09 am Friday, December 3, 2021
BY TONY HOSS
There are many today that claim to receive modern day revelations from God concerning His will for mankind. However, the written and infallible Word of God does not support this claim. “God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds.” (Hebrews 1:1-2 KJV). The Bible is clear that God speaks to us through His beloved Son, not in a direct manner through modern day prophets, but rather through the written Word.
The thought that God continues to communicate directly with individuals is false for various reasons. First is the fact that God said He would stop using prophets. “Charity never faileth: but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away” (1 Corinthians 13:8 KJV). All information now comes through the Son, Who directed the Holy Spirit to guide the Apostles. “Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come. He shall glorify me: for he shall receive of mine, and shall shew it unto you” (John 16:13-14 KJV). By inspiration the Apostles, recorded for the Words of God. “Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God. Which things also we speak, not in the words which man’s wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual” (1 Cor. 2:12-13). They were recorded that we might have an accurate, never changing and permanent record of what we, as Christians, need to do. Peter in 2 Peter 1:13-15 said, “Yea, I think it meet, as long as I am in this tabernacle, to stir you up by putting you in remembrance; Knowing that shortly I must put off this my tabernacle, even as our Lord Jesus Christ hath shewed me. Moreover I will endeavour that ye may be able after my decease to have these things always in remembrance.”
Peter and the other inspired writers accomplished the task of recording the complete record of God. In fact Peter reminds us in 2 Peter 1:2-4, “Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord, According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue: Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.” If those in the days of the Apostles were given all things then why would He years later change His mind? If he changed his mind then He would be a God of confusion (1 Cor. 14:33 KJV). Its completeness is seen in Paul’s words in 2 Timothy 3:16-17, “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: (17) That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works.” If the word of God in the time of Timothy could see a man perfected and thoroughly furnished, what more could mankind need other than that which God has already given?
In Jude 3, Jude wrote concerning our common salvation. Therefore, the record of God must have been complete. It was and is a complete and perfect record. This leaves no room for further revelations. Anything additional would mean what was already give was incomplete. Paul said, “I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel: Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ. But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed. As we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed. For do I now persuade men, or God? or do I seek to please men? for if I yet pleased men, I should not be the servant of Christ” (Galatians 1:6-10 KJV).
Because of the importance of God’s Word to the world, we must reject so-called modern day revelations and focus on learning the Scriptures. “Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth” (2 Timothy 2:15). We have the responsibility to read, study and know God’s Word. “Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths” (Proverbs 3:5-6 KJV).
(Tony Hoss is minister at Centerview Church of Christ.)