Direct revelation
Direct revelation is a term used by some Christian churches to express their belief in a communication from God
God in Christianity
In Christianity, God is the eternal being that created and preserves the universe. God is believed by most Christians to be immanent , while others believe the plan of redemption show he will be immanent later...

 to a person, by words, impression, visions, dreams or actual appearance
Theophany, from the Ancient Greek , meaning "appearance of God"), refers to the appearance of a deity to a human or other being, or to a divine disclosure....

. Direct revelation
In religion and theology, revelation is the revealing or disclosing, through active or passive communication with a supernatural or a divine entity...

 is believed to be an open communication between God and man, or the Holy Spirit
Holy Spirit
Holy Spirit is a term introduced in English translations of the Hebrew Bible, but understood differently in the main Abrahamic religions.While the general concept of a "Spirit" that permeates the cosmos has been used in various religions Holy Spirit is a term introduced in English translations of...

 and man, without any other exterior (secondary) means. Direct revelation from evil spirits can also occur.

Examples of this is seen in God communicating the Ten Commandments
Ten Commandments
The Ten Commandments, also known as the Decalogue , are a set of biblical principles relating to ethics and worship, which play a fundamental role in Judaism and most forms of Christianity. They include instructions to worship only God and to keep the Sabbath, and prohibitions against idolatry,...

 to Moses
Moses was, according to the Hebrew Bible and Qur'an, a religious leader, lawgiver and prophet, to whom the authorship of the Torah is traditionally attributed...

 on Mt. Sinai (Exodus 34:4); or the devil communicating knowledge to Jesus Christ during his temptation
Temptation of Christ
The temptation of Christ is detailed in the Gospels of Matthew, Mark, and Luke. According to these texts, after being baptized, Jesus fasted for forty days and nights in the Judean desert. During this time, the devil appeared to Jesus and tempted him...

 in the wilderness (Luke 4:1-12) or the appearance of an angel
Angel of the Lord
The Angel of the Lord is one of many terms in the Hebrew Bible used for an angel. The Biblical name for angel, מלאך mal'ach, which translates simply as "messenger," obtained the further signification of "angel" only through the addition of God's name, as The Angel of the Lord (or the Angel of...

 to the wife of Manoah
Manoah is the father of Samson. Manoah means rest or quiet in Judges 13:1-23 and 14:2-4 of the Hebrew Bible.Manoah was of the tribe of Dan, and lived in the city of Zorah. He and his wife were childless, but an angel of the Lord appeared to Manoah's wife and told her that she would give birth to a...

 telling her that she shall bear Samson
Samson, Shimshon ; Shamshoun or Sampson is the third to last of the Judges of the ancient Israelites mentioned in the Tanakh ....

 (Judges 13:2). Direct revelation is classified as special revelation
Special revelation
Special revelation is a theological term used mainly by evangelical scientists and theologians which refers to the belief that knowledge of God and of spiritual matters can be discovered through supernatural means, such as miracles or the scriptures, a disclosure of God's truth through means other...

, but the word "direct" has come to make this type of revelation distinct. It is believed by mainstream Christianity that direct revelation had ceased with the death of the early apostles in the first century.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints teach that God Almighty restored direct revelation as recently as the nineteenth century by way of Joseph Smith Jr. and the First Vision
First Vision
The First Vision refers to a vision that Joseph Smith, Jr. said he received as a youth in a wooded area in Manchester, New York, which his followers call the Sacred Grove. Smith described it as a personal theophany in which he received a forgiveness of sins...

. Since then, direct revelation has been the teaching and practice of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. It is the belief of the Latter-day Saints that direct revelation is available to all mankind who diligently seek God with sincerity, and real intent. "Every devoted, obedient and righteous person on the earth has and does receive revelation from God".

According to the LDS church, there are two basic types of direct revelation, Public and Personal. Public revelation refers to the revelation of God’s will to his chosen prophets, seers, and revelators. These revelations are to guide the Church, its functions, direction, and doctrinal stance. "These public revelations usually illuminate scriptural passages that are doctrinal rather than those that are descriptive or directive."

Personal or Private revelations pertains to that person's life. A person can receive personal revelation from God as would God's prophet, but the difference lies in its purpose. This revelation is to edify, enlighten and fill the soul of that person and assist them in their life, both in a general sense and a religious or spiritual sense. A person can receive private revelation for him/herself or for their immediate family, but will not receive this revelation for others outside their family or for the Church. This revelation is considered an integral part of the life of the faithful.

Sometimes personal revelation has an effect upon nations or the world, but in a more indirect manner. In this sense God inspires certain people in history to impart knowledge and moral truths. Basically, God "enlightens" the works of certain people that have influence or will have influence upon the world. God apparently enlightened "...great religious leaders of the world such as Muhammad, Confucius, and the Reformers, as well as philosophers including Socrates, Plato, and others. This was to bring whole nations to a higher level of understanding."

Pentecostal and Charismatic Christianity

Pentecostal and Charismatic Christianity
Charismatic Christianity
Charismatic Christianity is a Christian doctrine that maintains that modern-day believers experience miracles, prophecy, speaking in tongues, and other spiritual gifts as described in of the Bible...

 has always maintained that God directly speaks today through direct means such as dreams
Dreams are successions of images, ideas, emotions, and sensations that occur involuntarily in the mind during certain stages of sleep. The content and purpose of dreams are not definitively understood, though they have been a topic of scientific speculation, philosophical intrigue and religious...

, visions, voices, impressions, and signs (or meaningful coincidences). While these Christians have emphasized speaking in tongues
Glossolalia or speaking in tongues is the fluid vocalizing of speech-like syllables, often as part of religious practice. The significance of glossolalia has varied with time and place, with some considering it a part of a sacred language...

 or even praying for healing
Faith healing
Faith healing is healing through spiritual means. The healing of a person is brought about by religious faith through prayer and/or rituals that, according to adherents, stimulate a divine presence and power toward correcting disease and disability. Belief in divine intervention in illness or...

, for the longest time Charismatics have shied away from expressing the gift of prophecy
Prophecy is a process in which one or more messages that have been communicated to a prophet are then communicated to others. Such messages typically involve divine inspiration, interpretation, or revelation of conditioned events to come as well as testimonies or repeated revelations that the...

which is the cause of these direct spiritual experiences. The reason for this is that Christian prophets
Prophets may refer to:* High Prophets , The Covenant leaders in Halo 2* Prophets , one of the five Ascension Gift Ministries* LDS Prophets, modern day Prophets of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints...

 in history have often come into conflict with the pastors and religious authorities of the church hierarchy
Catholic Church hierarchy
The term Hierarchy in the Catholic Church has a variety of related usages. Literally, "holy government", the term is employed in different instances. There is a Hierarchy of Truths, which refers to the levels of solemnity of the official teaching of the faith...

. Throughout church history, Christian prophets
Prophets may refer to:* High Prophets , The Covenant leaders in Halo 2* Prophets , one of the five Ascension Gift Ministries* LDS Prophets, modern day Prophets of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints...

 have usually been mystics
Christian mysticism
Christian mysticism refers to the development of mystical practices and theory within Christianity. It has often been connected to mystical theology, especially in the Catholic and Eastern Orthodox traditions...

 or people that practiced divine contemplation
The word contemplation comes from the Latin word contemplatio. Its root is also that of the Latin word templum, a piece of ground consecrated for the taking of auspices, or a building for worship, derived either from Proto-Indo-European base *tem- "to cut", and so a "place reserved or cut out" or...

 or soaking prayer.

Various Christian groups throughout church history could be labeled "prophetic", because they have welcomed the gift of prophecy in their church meetings and lives: the Montanists
Montanism was an early Christian movement of the late 2nd century, later referred to by the name of its founder, Montanus, but originally known by its adherents as the New Prophecy...

, the Desert Fathers
Desert Fathers
The Desert Fathers were hermits, ascetics, monks, and nuns who lived mainly in the Scetes desert of Egypt beginning around the third century AD. The most well known was Anthony the Great, who moved to the desert in 270–271 and became known as both the father and founder of desert monasticism...

, various orders of Catholic monasticism
Christian monasticism
Christian monasticism is a practice which began to develop early in the history of the Christian Church, modeled upon scriptural examples and ideals, including those in the Old Testament, but not mandated as an institution in the scriptures. It has come to be regulated by religious rules Christian...

 such as the Dominicans
Dominican Order
The Order of Preachers , after the 15th century more commonly known as the Dominican Order or Dominicans, is a Catholic religious order founded by Saint Dominic and approved by Pope Honorius III on 22 December 1216 in France...

 and the Discalced Carmelites
Discalced Carmelites
The Discalced Carmelites, or Barefoot Carmelites, is a Catholic mendicant order with roots in the eremitic tradition of the Desert Fathers and Mothers...

, the Waldensians
Waldensians, Waldenses or Vaudois are names for a Christian movement of the later Middle Ages, descendants of which still exist in various regions, primarily in North-Western Italy. There is considerable uncertainty about the earlier history of the Waldenses because of a lack of extant source...

, the Anabaptists, the Jansenists, the Quietists
Quietism (Christian philosophy)
Quietism is a Christian philosophy that swept through France, Italy and Spain during the 17th century, but it had much earlier origins. The mystics known as Quietists insist, with more or less emphasis, on intellectual stillness and interior passivity as essential conditions of perfection...

, the Quakers, the French prophets
Camisards were French Protestants of the rugged and isolated Cevennes region of south-central France, who raised an insurrection against the persecutions which followed the revocation of the Edict of Nantes in 1685...

, various people in the Great Awakening
Great Awakening
The term Great Awakening is used to refer to a period of religious revival in American religious history. Historians and theologians identify three or four waves of increased religious enthusiasm occurring between the early 18th century and the late 19th century...

 and Second Great Awakening
Second Great Awakening
The Second Great Awakening was a Christian revival movement during the early 19th century in the United States. The movement began around 1800, had begun to gain momentum by 1820, and was in decline by 1870. The Second Great Awakening expressed Arminian theology, by which every person could be...

, the Irvingites, individuals in the Holiness movement
Holiness movement
The holiness movement refers to a set of beliefs and practices emerging from the Methodist Christian church in the mid 19th century. The movement is distinguished by its emphasis on John Wesley's doctrine of "Christian perfection" - the belief that it is possible to live free of voluntary sin - and...

, the early Pentecostal movement
Pentecostalism is a diverse and complex movement within Christianity that places special emphasis on a direct personal experience of God through the baptism in the Holy Spirit, has an eschatological focus, and is an experiential religion. The term Pentecostal is derived from Pentecost, the Greek...

, the Latter Rain revival, the Charismatic movement
Charismatic movement
The term charismatic movement is used in varying senses to describe 20th century developments in various Christian denominations. It describes an ongoing international, cross-denominational/non-denominational Christian movement in which individual, historically mainstream congregations adopt...

, the Jesus movement
Jesus movement
The Jesus movement was a movement in Christianity beginning on the West Coast of the United States in the late 1960s and early 1970s and spreading primarily through North America and Europe, before dying out by the early 1980s. It was the major Christian element within the hippie counterculture,...

, the Vineyard; and especially the Kansas City prophets
Apostolic-Prophetic Movement
The Apostolic-Prophetic Movement in Charismatic Christianity is seen by its participants as a restoration of the neglected elements of the Five-Fold Ministry described in the New Testament book of Ephesians, "some apostles, and some prophets; and some evangelists; and some pastors and teachers; for...

, the Toronto Blessing
Toronto Blessing
The Toronto blessing, a term coined by British churches, describes the revival and resulting phenomena that began in January 1994 at the Toronto Airport Vineyard church, now the Toronto Airport Christian Fellowship , a neocharismatic evangelical Christian church located in Toronto, Ontario, Canada...

 movement, and Bethel Church
Bethel Church (Redding, California)
Bethel Church is a church that was established in Redding, California as an Assemblies of God congregation in 1954, and has since grown to an estimated weekly attendance of over 3,000 people...

 in Redding, California.

See also

  • Private revelation
    Private revelation
    In the teaching of the Catholic Church, a private revelation refers to visions and revelations from God to a specific Christian which have taken place since the completion of the New Testament...

  • Continuous revelation
    Continuous revelation
    Continuous revelation or continuing revelation is a theological belief or position that God continues to reveal divine principles or commandments to humanity...

  • General revelation
    General revelation
    General revelation is a term used by theologians which refers to a universal aspect of God, of God's knowledge and of spiritual matters, discovered through natural means, such as observation of nature , philosophy and reasoning, human conscience or providence or providential history...

  • Progressive revelation (Christian)
    Progressive revelation (Christian)
    Progressive revelation in Christianity is the concept that the sections of the Bible that were written later contain a fuller revelation of God compared to the earlier sections. For instance, the theologian Charles Hodge wrote,...

External links

  • Scripture and general revelation, by Andrew S. Kulikovsky at the Creation Ministries International
    Creation Ministries International
    Creation Ministries International is a non-profit young Earth creationist organisation of autonomous Christian apologetics ministries that promote a literal interpretation of the Book of Genesis...

     website - a discussion of the evangelical
    Evangelicalism is a Protestant Christian movement which began in Great Britain in the 1730s and gained popularity in the United States during the series of Great Awakenings of the 18th and 19th century.Its key commitments are:...

    notion of revelation in contrast to the common understanding.
The source of this article is wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  The text of this article is licensed under the GFDL.