God’s General Revelation

God’s General Exposure of Himself Are Plainly Seen and Easily Understood

Romans 1:20

Charles E. Whisnant, Pastor/Teacher

January 17, 2010

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“For the invisible things of Him from the creation2937 of the world2889 are clearly seen, being understood3539 by the things that are made, even his eternal126 power and Godhead2305 so that they are without excuse: kjv

For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse.” NASV

This section Romans 1:18-21 Paul is describing God’s gracious revelation and man’s greatest rebellion against the clear truth of the Creation. This is why we have spent most of 2009 on God’s Creation.

From Creation the Invisible Things of God are Clearly Seen. Romans 1:20

  •  John 1:18; Colossians 1:15; 1Timothy 1:17; 6:16.

FOR: is a subordinating conjunction which introduces the explanation of how God made a knowledge of Him evident to all mankind. In virtue of this revelation, men are inexcusable, irreverent and ungrateful.

Creation: refers to bringing something into existence which has not existed before. Hebrews 11:3. God’s creative action.

  • In 1 Peter 2:13, God has created all the foundations of human society, work, family and the government. Now not only is God its originator, but as to its function or sphere of operation.
  •  Ephesians 2:10, the purpose of this new creation. We are His workmanship created for Him.

Of the world refers to an orderly arrangement and here refers to the order of the universe.

Invisible: is that which cannot be seen with physical eyes.

  • Are those things which are manifested by His works, and are explained by the terms “power and Godhead.”
  • The visible nature speaks of nature’s invisible God.

Psalms 19:1-6

  • The point: anyone who ever looked into the night sky or the sunset has no excuse to not believe in God.

Man, reasoning upon the basis of the law of cause and effect, which law requires an adequate cause for every effect, is forced to the conclusion that such a tremendous effect as the universe, demands a Being of eternal power and divine attributes.

His eternal power Romans 16:26, Genesis 21:33, Deut. 33:27, Psalms 90:2

  •  Eternal: means everlasting, having infinite duration, lasting or enduring forever.
  •  Power: Being able, the power or ability to carry out some function. God’s Dunamis has always existed.

· Godhead or divine nature: Acts 17:29; Colossians 23:9. The attributes which make up deity, signifying the sum total of the divine attributes of God.

  • Paul is declaring how much of God may be known form the revelation of Himself which He has made in nature.
  • YET it is not the personal God whom any man may learn to know by these aids; He can only be known only by the revelation of Himself in His SON, Jesus Christ.

§ John 17:25, John 1:18, Colossians 2:9.

  • What is known is His divine attributes and His majesty and glory.
  • Therefore, through the light of the created universe, unsaved man recognized the fact that there is a Supreme Being, who created it, who has eternal power and divine attributes, a Being to whom worship and obedience is due.
  • AND this is the truth which man is restrained or has withdrawn from belief.
  • HEREIN lies the just condemnation of the entire race, since it has not lived up to the light which it has. This, Paul says, renders man without excuse.

Have been clearly seen: Paul connects the observing of the mighty and beautiful things of the world with the consciousness of a personal God.

  • · Clearly seen: literally means to look down, see from above, view from on high,
  • The idea is to get hold of definite information with focus upon process of perception but associated with an intellectual apprehension.
  • It means to behold fully, distinctly apprehend, clearly see and discern clearly
  • They are continually put on view, perceived, continuously beheld fully, distinctly apprehended.
  • God has given more than just one brief glance of His glorious work.

o INVISIBLE THINGS ARE CLEARLY VISIBLE.

  •  Theologically this is called “natural or general revelation.”
  • God’s natural revelation of Himself is not obscure or selective, observable only by a few perceptive people who are specially gifted. In other words everyone can clearly see.
  • Therefore no one has an excuse to say, “I see no evidence for a Creator, for a God.

 THERE IS IT: There is the point of Paul:

  • It takes a deliberate act of one’s will to observe the design we see in creation and not acknowledge a Designer.

Being understood through what has been made:

· Understood: the mind, reflective intelligence, the organ of mental perception and apprehension

  • Clear perception, a full understanding,
  • In other words, you just do not see it, you have the perception in your mind upon seeing it that there is a Creator.
  • And there is this continuous avail to see and understand.
  •  Matthew 15:17; 16:9, 11

what has been made: means what is made and refers to the product or workmanship.

  •  He who does the making. Eph 2:10.
  • Men cannot indict God with hiding Himself from them and therefore excuse their irreligion and their immorality.

So that they are without excuse

  •  So that: sense is rather purpose: The revelation of God’s power and divinity is given, so that, after being made clear, they fall into sin, they may be without defense.

Without excuse that is without apology. No legal defense.

  • In other words, one can not justify the circumstances that led to the reason why they didn’t believe in a God.
  • Men are judged and sent to hell not because they do not live up to the light evidenced in the world but because ultimately that rejection leads them to reject Jesus Christ.
  • In other words, again, if a person lives up to the light of the revelation he has, God will provide for his hearing the gospel by some means or another.
  •  Acts 8:26, Acts 10:2, 44,48, Acts 16:14.

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About Charles e Whisnant

Youth Pastor since 1964.Pastor/Teacher 1971-74, 1980-2001, 2008-2015. Seminary, College, On line training, 50 years of study. A student of of the Bible. Expositional in my teaching. Married for 45 years. Four children and three granddaughter. Currently pastor - teacher in Minford, Ohio. No published books. No TV program. Favorite preachers Spurgeon, Calvin, MacArthur, Lloyd-Jones, Packer, Edwards, Baxter, Puritans.
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