II. TRUTH HIDDEN FROM MEN FOR AGES, AND WHICH THEY HAD NOT DISCOVERED AND COULD NOT DISCOVER, BY THE UNAIDED PROCESSES OF HUMAN REASONING, HAS BEEN REVEALED TO APOSTLES AND PROPHETS IN THE SPIRIT
The second thing taught in the Bible regarding the inspiration of the Apostles and Prophets, the inspiration of the various authors of the books of the Bible, is that truth hidden from men for ages, and which they had not discovered, and could not discover, by the unaided processes of human reasoning, even human reasoning at its very best and highest, has been revealed to Apostles and Prophets in the Holy Spirit. We find this very clearly taught in Eph. 3:2-5: “If so be that ye have heard of the dispensation of that grace of God which was given me to you-ward; (3) how that by revelation was made known unto me the mystery, as I wrote before in few words, (4) whereby when ye read, ye can perceive my understanding in the mystery of Christ; (5) which in other generations was not made known unto the sons of men, as it hath now been revealed unto his holy apostles and prophets in the Spirit.” The meaning of these words is unmistakable. Paul here declares in words the meaning of which is perfectly plain, that God “in the Spirit” had revealed “unto His holy apostles and prophets” “the mystery of Christ” which in former generations had not been made known unto the sons of men, which they had not discovered and could not discover except by revelation from God; Paul and the other apostles and prophets knew it by direct revelation from God himself through the Holy Ghost. The teaching is inescapable that the Bible contains truth that men never had discovered and never could have discovered if left to themselves, but truth which the Father in great grace has revealed to His children through His servants the prophets and apostles. We see in this the folly, a folly so common in our day, of seeking to test the statements of Scripture by the conclusions of human reasoning, or by the intuitions of the “Christian consciousness.” The revelation of God transcends human reasoning, and therefore human reasoning cannot be its test. Furthermore, a consciousness that is truly and fully Christian is the product of the study and absorption of Bible truth. It is not the test of the truth of the Bible,—it is the product of meditation on the Bible. If our “consciousness” differs from the statements of the Bible, it is not as yet a fully “Christian consciousness,” and the thing for us to do is not to try to pull God’s revelation down to the level of our consciousness but to tone our consciousness up to the level of God’s Word.