God has not left himself without witness. He reveals his will and purposes to men in various ways at various times.
One major category of revelation is special revelation, where God presents his specific will for us. This is found most clearly in the person of Christ, who is God incarnate. Christ is the clearest voice of God speaking to mankind in the clearest of terms. We gaze upon him and see the fullness of glory and truth.
God also speaks to us in the books of the Bible. As 2 Timothy 3:16 says, the Bible is the voice of God reduced to paper. It is the inspired words of God mediated through 40 different authors on three different continents over 1,500 years, and yet it comes to us as a cohesive and consistent message speaking to the most contentious issues human beings can consider.
In Christ and the Bible we have the specific revelation of God. There is another category of revelation that we sometimes overlook. This revelation is found in verses like Psalm 19:1:
“The heavens declare the glory of God, the sky above proclaims his handiwork.”
There is something about the creation that represents the voice of God speaking to us in general terms. In Romans 1 Paul says, “For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse.” God speaks in such clear terms through the creation that people are without excuse for their failure to acknowledge his eternal power and divine nature.
God’s fingerprints are all over his creation, and they point us to the necessity of a Creator. All of this complexity and organization, which secular man attributes to the blind forces of nature, points us to God. Wherever we find genuine complexity and design, there is a designer.
Natural revelation is a way to see God that leaves every man across the planet and throughout history without excuse.
Charles Stolfus is the Director of the Lay Institute at Denton Bible Church and guest instructor at the Kanakuk Institute.