Monday Musings for October 02, 2017

Good morning, Musers,

Has God spoken? … and if so, how? That’s the essence of today’s query… and if you are reading this, the odds are that you take the Bible seriously… and if you take the Bible seriously, you will probably say that is how God has spoken! But do you take yourselves seriously, too?

Please understand that I am not looking to overthrow God’s word as our primary source of revelation today, but I will remind you that the Bible (like every communication) has a limited scope. For example, there are some things the Bible doesn’t address because it does not cover every topic and there are some things it does not address (or address in full) because God has other revelatory outlets that do the job more effectively. But, wherever the source of truth, the Bible should always be our touchstone for truth.

Most of you are familiar with the terms God’s general revelation, which refers to his created works, and God’s special revelation, which refers to the Bible. But, I’ve added another — God’s moral revelation — which refers to the human conscience. This is why I asked if you take yourselves seriously. You see, we human beings are hardwired for morality, and this makes us unique in the physical creation.

But this hardwiring is not just a pathway; it is itself information. So, while it is true that we can learn plenty about morality from studying the Bible, from analyzing the universe or from doing abstract thinking, these are external sources. But we are moral beings at our cores (being made in God’s image) … and whatever else goes on in creation doesn’t affect that. As such, I consider our design factors to be information in themselves, so my thesis is that our capacity for morality is also a revelation from God.

I realize that we humans are part of creation… and that puts us under God’s general revelation. But the same could be said of his written word. Now, God’s word will stand — with or without a universe! … but his printed version won’t. So, just as we consider the Bible a special case in the physical universe and call it God’s special revelation, so I consider the human conscience a special case in that same physical universe, and I call it God’s moral revelation. Now there are three — and the usual rules apply: these three are true individually and mutually.

How we see God distributing information (and how he holds people responsible for it) is an important part of our worldview. Naturalists conclude that morality is either an evolutionary adaptation to help propagate the species, or it is a cultural artifact that doesn’t really exist. But if that’s true, why do we have police departments, courts and jails? I ask because the “goodness” of humankind is not the only proof of morality. Evil proves morality, too.

You see, unless there’s a sense of right and wrong floating around out there, no one would be able to identify evil — and for good reason: evil would not exist! But the fact that every nation has some form of a criminal justice system proves that every nation holds some kind of moral standard — and how we account for this should factor heavily in our worldview.

Even people who dismiss God and the Bible out of hand are stuck with this moral revelation (Romans 2:14-15). This is why I’ve declared morality to be co-equal with the others. So now, God has three revelations… and as such, people are trebly without excuse.

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