1 Timothy 6:6-19
Whether in the school room or in everyday life, we accumulate knowledge on the basis of what we already know. Learning is progressive. In the same way God’s revelation is progressive. It comes only as we are able to receive it. In the story of the Rich Man and Lazarus, the rich man begs Abraham to send Lazarus to his brothers to warn them of what happens to people who ignore the poor. Abraham indicates that the Law and the prophets should be enough for them to have got that message already. If they haven’t accepted God’s Word there, they won’t accept it even if Lazarus should miraculously come to them from the dead to tell them. To those who have responded to God’s Word, more shall be given, but to those who have not responded, even what they have shall be taken away from them. That’s how it is with divine revelation. Forgetting this, some people are aghast at some of the things in the Bible that God says to Israel during the earlier stages of their life with God. However, as with learning so with revelation, there sometimes come earth-shattering revelations that change the whole way of looking at things, momentous events in the whole process. The life, death and resurrection of Jesus is just that. In our own individual lives we experience God’s progressive revelation as we interact with God by reading and re-reading the Scriptures, by participating in the on-going worship of the Church, by sharing and interacting with other pilgrims on the faith journey, and by talking with people of other faiths and interacting with people in the wider community. But the key to it all remains God’s disclosure through Jesus the Christ. 1 Timothy 6:6-19 warns against those whose teaching is not grounded in Jesus. God always has more truth to reveal through his Word, but it is always built upon Jesus Christ, the Word made flesh. Unless we keep this clearly in mind, we will find ourselves going astray.
- Have you experienced God’s progressive revelation in your life? How has your understanding changed over the years?
- Have you experienced any momentous events which changed your way of looking at things?
- What in the Old Testament do you find most inconsistent with God’s revelation through Jesus?
- What does 1 Timothy 6:6-10 have to say about faith being the way to prosperity?