Revelation Our Senses Are 'so Thesis

  • Length: 10 pages
  • Sources: 3
  • Subject: Mythology - Religion
  • Type: Thesis
  • Paper: #14493544

Excerpt from Thesis :



Calvin also taught that another way God begins to deal with a person to make him/her restless is knowledge.

Under the influence of the Spirit of God, a person is borne upward; traveling upward toward the knowledge of God. Conscience, as far as human understanding reaches, is a source which constitutes the unconditional starting point for the beginning of knowledge of God; for the revelation of Jesus Christ.

For Calvin, "revelation is not immediately revelation of Jesus Christ. But revelation of the harsh judgment of God, although this is certainly finally oriented to Christ."

Basically, Calvin did not have any revelation problem as the center of his theology. He began with the reality that a person is alienated from God, but that God seeks the individual out and entices him/her to a way in which community with God may be discovered again. Calvin argued sin has damaged human reason; that not only do reason's limitations have to be overcome, but reason's inescapable disorientation also. Something, Calvin explained, has gone fundamentally wrong with the noetic machinery of the human mind.

To understand Calvin's argument, Steinmetz purports, one may find it helpful to distinguish the three following terms:

The natural knowledge of God, natural theology and theology of nature.

Calvin proposed the question of whether humans possess a natural knowledge of God, with the answer being: Yes. Another consideration Calvin presented in question form merited a No answer:

Can humans arrange what they know from nature into an intelligible pattern known as, natural theology

The third question Calvin posed addressed whether the redeemed, and only redeemed human create a genuine theology of nature by reclaiming nature as a constructive source of the true knowledge of God. This answer, Calvin also explained was: Yes. God continues to be transcendent at each point of contact with the universe, Calvin taught. The world, albeit serves as the theater of God's glory. In regard to world religions. Calvin noted, wherever humans live, they will practice some form of religion. Calvin, however did not perceive that all humans instinctively worshiped the true God. Calvin utilized three particular images to describe concepts relating to revelation. "The first image compared what fallen human beings can learn about God from nature to the scattered sparks that dot the ground around a dying campfire."

The sparks do not project heat or light unless they are raked together.

Consequently, unless the sparklike moments of discernment fallen humanity is capable of are drawn together into an intelligible pattern, they do not kindle affection or insight Calvin's second image compares a lonely countryside's darkness to a brewing storm. Thick clouds cover the moon and the stars, with sudden flashes of lightning providing the only light to the traveler crossing a meadow. Momentary flashes of light, however, prove to be superior to having no light at all. These revelations of light, albeit, serve more to warn of the traveler's predicament than providing a useful guide out of it. Calvin's third image most likely proves to be the most effective, as he compared sinners to an old man with eyesight dimmed by age. To ensure the old man can see, someone hands him a book. He cannot, however read it. The only way he can read the words is when someone hands him his glasses. In a similar sense, fallen humans cannot read the book of nature, and learn about God Scripture serving as glasses to assist them. Eyes blurred by sin can barely see the self-revelation of God in nature.

Revelation occurs, Calvin asserted, as humans "see scattered sparks of truth, momentary flashes of illumination, and blurred pages from the book of nature." Sinners who try to construct a natural theology that points to the true God, out of the fragments Calvin noted, they only assemble a picture of an idol, a deity not really God, but merely a cheap substitute for the one and only true God.

CONCLUSION

From the study completed during this thesis, the researcher notes that Calvin perceived that all humans do not instinctively worship the true God. Bloeshch, on the other hand, opens himself to all religions.

Bloeschs, unlike Calvin is critical of Scripture. Calvin purports Scripture to be God's word, to be read literally.

Both Bloeshch and Calvin, note the value of revelation. Both men also agree upon the primary focus of the revelation of God. Both men, although as the thesis purports, diametrically differ on revelation, per se, as well as how it occurs, both agree that the revelation of God is seen in Jesus Christ.

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Barth on knowing God: a diptych. BRILL, 2005. Available at http://books.google.com/books?id=mwpfxCAQCDkC.Internet. Accessed 11 March 2009.

Donald G. Bloesch. Holy Scripture: Revelation, Inspiration & Interpretation. InterVarsity Press, 2005; Introduction; available at http://books.google.com/books?id=dYP2yehSASoC;Internet. Accessed 10 March 2009.

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A antithesis. Online Etymology Dictionary. Douglas Harper, Historian; available at http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/antithesis;Internet. Accessed 09.March 2009.

A antithesis. Random House, Inc. available at http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/antithesis;Internet. Accessed 09.March 2009.

A antithesis. Random House.

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A synthesis. Online Etymology Dictionary. Douglas Harper, Historian; available at http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/synthesis;Internet. Accessed 09.March 2009.

Blue Letter Bible. "Dictionary and Word Search for '"revelation" in the KJV." Blue Letter Bible. 1996-2009. 11 Mar 2009; available at http://www.blueletterbible.org/search/translationResults.cfm?

Criteria=%22revelation%22&t=KJV; Internet; accessed 10 March 2009.

Blue Letter Bible. "Dictionary and Word Search for apokalypsis (Strong's 602)." Blue Letter Bible. 1996-2009. 11 Mar 2009; available at http://www.blueletterbible.org/lang/lexicon/lexicon.cfm?Strongs=G602&t=KJV;Internet. Accessed 10 March 2009.

Donald G.

Bloesch. "Deconstructing Evangelicalism: Conservative Protestantism in the Age of Billy Graham." The Christian Century, 31 May 2005, 39+. Database online; available from Questia, http://www.questia.com/PM.qst?a=o&d=500955342;Internet. Accessed 6 March 2009.

Mann.

Bloesch. Holy Scripture... Introduction.

Bloesch. Holy Scripture... p. 15.

Bloesch. Holy Scripture... pp. 14-15.

Bloesch. Holy Scripture... p. 15.

Engelsma, David J. Holy Scripture: Revelation, Inspiration & Interpretation. InterVarsity Press, 1994; available at http://www.prca.org/prtj/apr96e.html#analysis;Internet. Accessed 6 March 2009.

David J. Engelsma. www.prca.org/prtj/nov2005.htm" the Last Things: Resurrection, Judgment, Glory, by Donald G. Bloesch. Downers Grove, Illinois: InterVarsity, 2004; available at http://www.prca.org/prtj/nov2005.htm;Internet. Accessed 6 March 2009.

Cornelis van der Kooi; Donald Mader, Translator. As in a mirror: John Calvin and Karl Barth on knowing God: a diptych. BRILL, 2005; available at http://books.google.com/books?id=mwpfxCAQCDkC;Internet. Accessed 11 March 2009.

A van der Kooi, p. 40.

David C. Steinmetz. "Creator God: The Debate on Intelligent Design." The Christian Century, 27 December 2005,…

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