The Divine Origin of the Bible – Lesson Three

The Divine Origin of the Bible

Lesson Three

Methods by which the Bible became a reality & how it can best be understood

Three Main Ways


From God to man – God reveals that which He wants written


From man to paper – man writes that which God wants written


From paper to heart – man understands that which God has written

  • Revelation is God making His truth known to man.
  • Inspiration guarantees that what the Bible says is just what God would say if He were to speak it directly.
  • Illumination is God giving us the ability to understand His Word

Two Types of Revelation

  • General Revelation – through nature and conscience
  • Special Revelation – through several means, but primarily through the Messiah

Jesus and the Scriptures

General Revelation

In Nature

Ps. 19:1 – The heavens are telling of the glory of God; And their expanse is declaring the work of His hands.

Rom. 1:18-20 – For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, because that which is known about God is evident within them; for God made it evident to them. For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse.

In Conscience

Rom. 2:14-15 – For when Gentiles who do not have the Law do instinctively the things of the Law, these, not having the Law, are a law to themselves, in that they show the work of the Law written in their hearts, their conscience bearing witness, and their thoughts alternately accusing or else defending them, Special revelation is the communication of divine truth from God to man. It is not the result of man’s search for God, but rather God revealing His truth to mankind

Means of Special Revelation

  • Casting Lots
  • Urim & Thummim
  • Dreams
  • Visions
  • Theophanies
  • Angels
  • Prophets
  • Jesus the Messiah
  • Bible

Special Revelation

Heb. 1:1-2 – God, after He spoke long ago to the fathers in the prophets in many portions and in many ways, in these last days has spoken to us in His Son, whom He appointed heir of all things, through whom also He made the world.

Divine inspiration is the activity of the Holy Spirit whereby He enabled certain humans to receive God’s special revelation and to record it verbally in their language and style, without error as the very words of God.

Upon completion of the 66 books of the Bible, special revelation ceased. No one has ever been able successfully to add one verse to the written Scriptures as a normative statement of truth.

Scriptures which support the Bible’s teaching about inspiration

2 Tim. 3:16-17 – All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work.

Ps. 119:160 – The sum of Thy word is truth, And every one of Thy righteous ordinances is everlasting.

Prov. 30:5-6 – Every word of God is tested; He is a shield to those who take refuge in Him. Do not add to His words lest He reprove you, and you be proved a liar.

2 Pet. 1:20-21 – But know this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture is a matter of one’s own interpretation, for no prophecy was ever made by an act of human will, but men moved by the Holy Spirit spoke from God.

Illumination is the ministry of the Holy Spirit helping the believer to understand the truth of the Bible

Illumination is the ministry of the Holy Spirit helping the believer to understand the truth of the Bible

Illumination is necessary because of the condition of the mind and heart of the non-believer

1 Cor. 2:14 – But a natural man does not accept the things of the Spirit of God; for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually appraised.

Rom. 8:6-8 – For the mind set on the flesh is death, but the mind set on the Spirit is life and peace, because the mind set on the flesh is hostile toward God; for it does not subject itself to the law of God, for it is not even able to do so; and those who are in the flesh cannot please God.

Here is something we should pray before we read the Bible

Ps. 119:18 – Open my eyes, that I may behold Wonderful things from Thy law.

While both guidance and illumination are genuine works of God, they do not guarantee that an individual will perfectly understand the Bible or in all cases will understand accurately God’s guidance.

Thus, while guidance and illumination are a work of the Spirit, they do not possess the infallibility of Scripture as they are being received by fallible human beings.

The Bible is inerrant. That means it is fully truthful in all that it affirms. As a result of that, the Bible is entirely true and fully trustworthy and deserves to be the final authority for our belief and behavior.