Monday, June 02, 2008

GOD'S FINAL REVELATION
...by John MacArthur

declaring the good news of the gospel of grace
"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" (Heb. 1:1-2).

A Samaritan woman declared, "I know that Messiah is coming (He who is called Christ); when that One comes, He will declare all things to us" (John 4:25). The expectation of that day, even among the Samaritans, was that Messiah would unfold the full and final revelation of God. The Holy Spirit, through the writer of Hebrews, affirms that to be true: "God . . . in these last days has spoken to us in His Son" (Heb. 1:1-2).

The Old Testament had given divine revelation in bits and pieces. Every piece was true, yet incomplete. But When Jesus came, the whole picture became clear, and though rejected by His own people, He was, in fact, the fulfillment of the messianic hope they had cherished for so many centuries.

The Old Testament age of promise ended when Jesus arrived. He is God's final word: "As many as may be the promises of God, in Him they are yes; wherefore also by Him is our Amen to the glory of God through us" (2 Cor. 1:20).

God fully expressed Himself in His Son. That's why John said, "The Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth. . . . No man has seen God at any time; the only begotten God, who is in the bosom of the Father, He has explained Him" (John 1:14, 18). Paul added that in Christ "all the fulness of Deity dwells in bodily form" (Col. 2:9).

The practical implications of that truth are staggering. Since Christ is the fullness of divine revelation, you need nothing more. In Him you have been made complete (Col. 2:10), and have been granted everything pertaining to life and godliness (2 Pet. 1:3). His Word is sufficient, needing no additions or amendments.

8 comments:

Doug E. said...

Amen to that.

I'm reminded of a passage in Hebrews which says. "For if the word spoken by angels was stedfast, and every transgression and disobedience received a just recompence of reward; How shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation; which at the first began to be spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed unto us by them that heard him; Heb 2:2-3.

If the earlier words were steadfast, how much more is the immediate revelation in Christ.

It is complete and the perfect has come.

Doug

Jeremy Weaver said...

Another great quote from the modern day 'Prince of Preachers'.

Gotta love MacArthur.

ajlin said...

OK- God's Final Revelation is Christ Jesus whom we know through the inerrant, God-breathed testimony of the Apostles. The person and work of Jesus as well as the implications of the ministry of Christ to our daily lives is also expounded upon by the Apostles. The question that has been asked to me regarding this area of revelation lately is, "How do we know that the canon of Scripture is closed?" In other words, how can we know (besides taking Revelation 22:18-19 out of context) that people are not receiving the Word of God outside of the Scriptures today. I firmly believe in sola Scriptura, but I am having trouble articulating the case for the closed canon, and I would appreciate any help someone could give.

In Christ,
-Andrew

Nathan White said...

Andrew,

I see your point in wondering if Revelation 22 is taken out of context, but I do not agree with you. Using this verse to justify the closing of the cannon is not taking anything out of context. From the passage it is clear that John is talking about the book of Revelation itself, but it is no accident that this passage lies at the end of the bible, and at the end of the book which reveals the future and even eternity itself. Clearly this statement, which is the only one of its kind in scripture (crystal clear and blunt), was not placed in the last few verses of the last book by accident. Also, since the subjects spoken of Revelation are woven throughout the whole Bible, the verse, in effect, condemns any tampering with God’s word as a whole. In addition, there are other scriptures that speak of the closing of the cannon (“once for all delivered to the saints” etc), so this passage coincides with those as well.

This issue is essentially the same as tongues, prophecy and other miraculous gifts spoken of in scripture. There is really no consistent way to believe in those things and yet hold to sola scriptura (I’m not meaning to offend anyone). The problem is that many demand a cut and dry verse to say this or that has ceased and this or that hasn’t. But of course there are none. But is there a cut and dry verse on the Trinity? Is there a cut and dry verse on how God can ordain our actions and yet we still suffer consequences? There are many areas in which we must deduce our doctrine from overarching dogmas that cannot be clear cut from just one passage.

SDG

Coffee4dKing said...

It is such a blessing to have teachers and shepherds that teach the Word of God is sufficient and nothing else is needed. It saddens me when I look at the church today, advertising things like relevant Biblical messages. The whole Word of God is relevant not just parts we pick and choose. There is no other revelation that is needed and although many of my charismatic brothers and sisters would disagree with me in relation to tongues and the gifts of the spirit, the cannon of scripture is complete needing nothing else to complete or have added to it.

ajlin said...

I certainly wasn't asking for one "cut and dry verse"- just the opposite- I was just asking for help in being able to articulate how we have come to our position from the Biblical texts.

gigantor1231 said...

Andrew

I guarantee that if you master what He has given you then He will give you more! Master the word, receive what He has already sent, of course keep in mind that men like John MacArthur have not even come close to mastering the written word of God. I know no one who has, other than Jesus.... well, then again He is the Word!

Steven & Faith Long said...

Hey Steve. Another great post. Why do some people always think they need "new" revelation? Answer: Their sufficiency is not in Christ! Even if that is their claim they, as Scripture has said, they devote themselves to myths and endless genealogies. Taking for example this fellow who claims to be a Messianic Jew, Micheal Rood. He has claimed that he had a vision directly from the throne room of God and that we all need to be "fully apprised of the information on the cd." The catch is that you have to send him $19.95 for this most important vision from God. How much more sick can you get?
(Micah 3:11)