Some religions have religious texts which they view as divinely or supernaturally revealed or inspired.
Muslims believe the Quran was revealed by God to Muhammad word by word through the angel Gabriel Jibril. The 15, handwritten pages produced by the mystic Maria Valtorta were represented as direct dictations from Jesus , while she attributed The Book of Azariah to her guardian angel. A revelation communicated by a supernatural entity reported as being present during the event is called a vision.
Direct conversations between the recipient and the supernatural entity,  or physical marks such as stigmata , have been reported. In rare cases, such as that of Saint Juan Diego , physical artifacts accompany the revelation. In the Abrahamic religions , the term is used to refer to the process by which God reveals knowledge of himself, his will , and his divine providence to the world of human beings. Revelation from a supernatural source plays a less important role in some other religious traditions such as Buddhism , Confucianism and Taoism. Inspiration — such as that bestowed by God on the author of a sacred book — involves a special illumination of the mind, in virtue of which the recipient conceives such thoughts as God desires him to commit to writing, and does not necessarily involve supernatural communication.
With the Age of Enlightenment in Europe, beginning about the midth century, the development of rationalism , materialism and atheism , the concept of supernatural revelation itself faced skepticism. In The Age of Reason — , Thomas Paine develops the theology of deism , rejecting the possibility of miracles and arguing that a revelation can be considered valid only for the original recipient, with all else being hearsay. Thomas Aquinas believed in two types of individual revelation from God , general revelation and special revelation. In general revelation , God reveals himself through his creation, such that at least some truths about God can be learned by the empirical study of nature, physics , cosmology , etc.
Special revelation is the knowledge of God and spiritual matters which can be discovered through supernatural means, such as scripture or miracles, by individuals.
Direct revelation refers to communication from God to someone in particular. Though one may deduce the existence of God and some of God's attributes through general revelation, certain specifics may be known only through special revelation. Aquinas believed that special revelation is equivalent to the revelation of God in Jesus. The major theological components of Christianity, such as the Trinity and the Incarnation , are revealed in the teachings of the church and the scriptures and may not otherwise be deduced.
Special revelation and natural revelation are complementary rather than contradictory in nature. In the 20th century, religious existentialists proposed that revelation held no content in and of itself but rather that God inspired people with his presence by coming into contact with them. Revelation is a human response that records how we respond to God. Some religious groups believe a deity has been revealed or spoken to a large group of people or have legends to a similar effect.
In Christianity , the Book of Acts describes the Day of Pentecost wherein a large group of the followers of Jesus experienced mass revelation. Historically, some emperors, cult leaders, and other figures have also been deified and treated as though their words are themselves revelations.
Some people hold that God can communicate with man in a way that gives direct, propositional content: This is termed verbal revelation. Orthodox Judaism and some forms of Christianity hold that the first five books of Moses were dictated by God in such a fashion.
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One school of thought holds that revelation is non-verbal and non-literal, yet it may have propositional content. People were divinely inspired by God with a message, but not in a verbal-like fashion. Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel has written, "To convey what the prophets experienced, the Bible could either use terms of descriptions or terms of indication.
Any description of the act of revelation in empirical categories would have produced a caricature. That is why all the Bible does is to state that revelation happened; how it happened is something they could only convey in words that are evocative and suggestive. Isaiah writes that he received his message through visions, where he would see YHWH , the God of Israel, speaking to angelic beings that surrounded him. Isaiah would then write down the dialogue exchanged between YHWH and the angels. This form of revelation constitutes the major part of the text of the Book of Isaiah.
The same formula of divine revelation is used by other prophets throughout the Tanakh , such as Micaiah in 1 Kings — Members of Abrahamic religions , including Judaism, Christianity and Islam, believe that God exists and can in some way reveal his will to people. Members of those religions distinguish between true prophets and false prophets , and there are documents offering criteria by which to distinguish true from false prophets. The question of epistemology then arises: how to know? Some believe that revelation can originate directly from a deity or through an agent such as an angel.
One who has experienced such contact with, or communication from, the divine is often called a prophet. An article p. All prophets would be mystics, but not all mystics would be prophets. Revelation from a supernatural source is of lesser importance in some other religious traditions, such as Taoism and Confucianism. Many Christians believe in the possibility and even reality of private revelations , messages from God for individuals, which can come in a variety of ways.
Montanism is an example in early Christianity and there are alleged cases today also. They consider these books to be written by human authors under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. They regard Jesus as the supreme revelation of God, with the Bible being a revelation in the sense of a witness to him.
Gregory and Nix speak of Biblical inerrancy as meaning that, in its original form, the Bible is totally without error, and free from all contradiction, including the historical and scientific parts. The Second Epistle of Peter claims that "no prophecy of Scripture comes from someone's own interpretation. For no prophecy was ever produced by the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit " 2 Peter — It also speaks of Paul's letters as containing some things "hard to understand, which the ignorant and unstable twist to their own destruction, as they do the other Scriptures".
This letter does not specify "the other Scriptures", nor does the term "all Scripture" in 2 Timothy indicate which writings were or would be breathed out by God and useful for teaching, since it does not preclude later works, such as the Book of Revelation and the Epistles of John may have been.
The Catholic Church recognizes 73 books as inspired and forming the Bible 46 books of the Old Testament and 27 books of the New Testament. The most common versions of the Bible that Protestants have today consist of 66 of these books. None of the 66 or 73 books gives a list of revealed books. Theologian and Christian existentialist philosopher Paul Johannes Tillich — , who sought to correlate culture and faith so that "faith need not be unacceptable to contemporary culture and contemporary culture need not be unacceptable to faith", argued that revelation never runs counter to reason affirming Thomas Aquinas who said that faith is eminently rational , and that both poles of the subjective human experience are complementary.
For him, the Bible is not The Revelation ; rather, it points to revelation. Human concepts can never be considered as identical to God's revelation, and Scripture is written in human language, expressing human concepts. It cannot be considered identical with God's revelation. However, God does reveal himself through human language and concepts, and thus Christ is truly presented in scripture and the preaching of the church.
This denomination believes that the president of the church receives revelation directly from God for the direction of the church. Latter-day Saints believe in an open scriptural canon, and in addition to the Bible and the Book of Mormon , have books of scripture containing the revelations of modern-day prophets such as the Doctrine and Covenants and the Pearl of Great Price. LDS Church leaders from the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles have taught during the church's General Conferences that conference talks which are "…[spoken as] moved upon by the Holy Ghost shall be scripture…".
Hence, the belief in continuing revelation.
Mormons sustain the President of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints as prophet, seer, and revelator—the only person on earth who receives revelation to guide the entire church. They also sustain the two counselors in the First Presidency, as well as the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, as prophets, seers, and revelators. In the meridian of time, Paul described prophets and apostles in terms of a foundation, with Christ as the cornerstone, which was built to prevent doctrinal shift—"that we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about by every wind of doctrine" Eph and —14, see also Matt — To maintain this foundation, new apostles were chosen and ordained to replace those lost to death or transgression, as when Matthias was called by revelation to replace Judas Acts — However, as intensifying persecution led to the imprisonment and martyrdom of the apostles, it eventually became impossible to continue the apostolic succession.
This naturally led to much disagreement and schism, which over the centuries culminated in the large number of Christian churches on the earth today. Mormons believe that God resumed his pattern of revelation when the world was again ready, by calling the Prophet Joseph Smith to restore the fullness of the gospel of Jesus Christ to the earth. Each member of the LDS Church is also confirmed a member of the church following baptism and given the "gift of the Holy Ghost" by which each member is encouraged to develop a personal relationship with that divine being and receive personal revelation for their own direction and that of their family.
The Latter Day Saint concept of revelation includes the belief that revelation from God is available to all those who earnestly seek it with the intent of doing good. It also teaches that everyone is entitled to personal revelation with respect to his or her stewardship leadership responsibility. Thus, parents may receive inspiration from God in raising their families, individuals can receive divine inspiration to help them meet personal challenges, church officers may receive revelation for those whom they serve, and so forth.
The important consequence of this is that each person may receive confirmation that particular doctrines taught by a prophet are true, as well as gain divine insight in using those truths for their own benefit and eternal progress. In the church, personal revelation is expected and encouraged, and many converts believe that personal revelation from God was instrumental in their conversion.
Smith , the sixth president of the LDS Church, summarized this church's belief concerning revelation by saying, "We believe… in the principle of direct revelation from God to man. The Qur'an claims to have been revealed word by word and letter by letter. Muslims hold that the message of Islam is the same as the message preached by all the messengers sent by God to humanity since Adam. Muslims believe that Islam is the oldest of the monotheistic religions because it represents both the original and the final revelation of God to Abraham , Moses , David , Jesus , and Muhammad.
Jesus is significant in this aspect as he received revelation in a twofold aspect, as Muslims believe he preached the Gospel while also having been taught the Torah. According to Islamic traditions, Muhammad began receiving revelations from the age of 40, delivered through the angel Gabriel over the last 23 years of his life. The content of these revelations, known as the Qur'an,  was memorized and recorded by his followers and compiled from dozens of hafiz as well as other various parchments or hides into a single volume shortly after his death.
In Muslim theology , Muhammad is considered equal in importance to all other prophets of God and to make distinction among the prophets is a sin , as the Qur'an itself promulgates equality between God's prophets. Qur'an He resigned from the job last October, advising CNN post-departure that it was his personal belief "that there is very compelling evidence that we may not be alone. The group's analysis of over , UFO reports over the past five decades has shown three things to be true, he has stated:.
Tremendous breakthroughs will happen if we make it safe for our scientists and engineers to study this phenomenon unimpeded.
These breakthroughs involve the fields of propulsion, energy, communication, biology and consciousness, to name just a few. The recently released fighter-jet camera video of craft off the coast of San Diego "is just the tip of the iceberg," Harzan said. Now that the spill gates have been opened a little, it is time for the rest to come out in an orderly fashion," he added, "and in so doing make it safe for our scientists and engineers to study this phenomenon without fear of ridicule or retribution, but with funding provided by Congress and private industry. Indeed, between and its termination in , the U.
Air Force's official UFO-investigation program, known as Project Blue Book , came to the following set of conclusions: No UFO reported, investigated and evaluated by the Air Force has ever given any indication of threat to our national security; there has been no evidence submitted to or discovered by the Air Force that sightings categorized as "unidentified" represent technological developments or principles beyond the range of present-day scientific knowledge; and there has been no evidence indicating that sightings categorized as "unidentified" are extraterrestrial vehicles.
Rojas endorses the scientific study of the UFO phenomenon and believes that all information regarding unidentified aerial objects should be released so that the data can be properly analyzed by the scientific community.
It would be highly negligent not to investigate. Another striking point in the recent disclosure, Rojas added, is that the incidents "are very similar to events that have been recorded by the U.