What can we learn about God through his revelations?
- His omnipotence
- His omniscience
- His omnipresence (eternal)
- His benevolence
- His transcendence (beyond our world and understanding)
- His immanence (constantly involved in the world)
- He is a creator
- He is thoughtful
- He is personal
There are three types of SPECIAL revelation: worship, visions and conversions.
- Charismatic worship - very lively, with lots of singing and dancing. Worshippers are joyous because God's spirit is in them. God reveals His happy nature in people's excitement
- Sacramental worship - actions to reflect God's activity in the world, eg we receive bread and wine at Communion to represent Jesus' death. It shows God's love for his people because he gave His Son's life to pay for our sins
- Contemplative worship - eg meditation. A quiet thinking where a person contacts God through their mind. It is a deep prayer where God may provide answers to problems in a person's life that they have asked for guidance on. It shows that God is benevolent, caring, immanent and personal
Visions or callings are where people believe that they have seen a vision or heard a calling from God. Only the person who experienced it is aware of it. Mother Teresa believed that God had called her to help the poor and sick in Calcutta. Her selflessness is a direct revelation to us of God's love.
In the past, people have had conversions. They have had an overwhelming experience of God that has changed them from not believing in Him to becoming religious. Their change in behaviour is proof of God directly revealing Himself to them.
Tom Pappania was a leading Mafia boss. He was extremely wealthy and powerful and he made his money from a life of crime, including robbery and murder. When he went to kill a preacher who he thought knew too much about him, Tom was brought to his knees by God and told that if he didn't accept God he was going to Hell. Tom confessed to the preacher about his criminal lifestyle. Following this experience, Tom gave up his life in the Mafia and became a Christian minister. This is an example of a conversion.
Saul was a Jew living in Israel, shortly after Jesus' death. He thought that all Christians were disrespectful to God because they didn't follow the rules of Judaism. Therefore he set about hunting them down and murdering them. One day when he was on the road to Damascus, he was blinded by a light and Jesus appeared to him. After three days, Saul was cured of his blindness and following this event, Saul became a Christian and…