A Brief Technical Look at Nerahism
NEARHISM (NEAR-ISM); –HEBREW: “HE MAKES HIMSELF KNOWN”: THE EPISTEMOLOGY WHICH CLAIMS THAT KNOWLEDGE IS, IN EVERY INSTANCE, A REVELATION TO AN INDIVIDUAL BY AN OUTSIDE ULTIMATE SOURCE.
Nerahism posits that revelation precedes experience and rational thought in the order of events that take place in knowing. Experience or rational thought without revelation puts the cart before the horse and are both instances following revelation and are not in themselves indicative of learning and knowing nor accurate measures for distinction between justified belief and opinion. The scientist who studies a subject is flooded first with what is unveiled before them; data they record which they then attempt to deduce an interpretation and which, only over a long and distinguished career of experience, can they be said to be the expert in their field. A good scientist is first, an expert of the senses.
The theologian and apologist as well must be experts of the senses–not that the things of God can be divined by human senses but that all of creation testifies that there is an eternally powerful divine one (Rom. 1), that all of mankind is made indefensible from the belief of this being’s existence (Rom.1 and 10) , and that those who are wise acknowledge with childlike certainty that He exists and as a result He rewards those who diligently seek Him, presumably with more revelation (Heb. 11). Having this statement before us, we can then rationalise that if these things are so, then at the very essence and core of belief is the revelation of God’s existence to us by the rest of creation. That He has made Himself known is the first and primary revelation for which we are indefensible for not believing. This is not to say that acknowledgement of God’s existence is salvific by nature, (Jas 2:9 is quite clear on this point) but that one cannot justify belief in Jesus as the Christ before they have acknowledged that God exists. The gospel without context is airy fairy nonsense. One cannot experience salvation apart from revelation, nor can a person by way of rational thought convince themselves of salvation without revelation.
Revelation from God concerning His existence met with childlike acceptance and the faithful stewardship of that seminal revelation results in the further entrusting of revelation to the individual by God until the gospel of reconciliation with the Father through the Son is entrusted to and accepted by that person.
The knowledge of God does not pass from revelation to experience or rational thought at this point as Paul rebukes the Galatians for this same diversion from the essence of the gospel.
11 For I would have you know, brothers, that the gospel that was preached by me is not man’s gospel.[c]12 For I did not receive it from any man, nor was I taught it, but I received it through a revelation of Jesus Christ.Galatians 1:11-12 English Standard Version
The new trustee of the gospel must continue as they began in this back and forth of listening for God to reveal some new aspect of Himself to them through creation, believing it with childlike certainty and stewarding what they have been entrusted with until they are entrusted with the next revelation from God. This is not to say that the Scriptures are unnecessary in this back and forth. Reading and studying the scriptures realigns our own hearts and minds to be mindful of how God has revealed Himself to past generations in their time and situations and therefore how He may be revealing Himself in our time.
It is unreasonable to assume that the scriptures contain every instance of God revealing Himself to every individual to which He has ever made Himself known. The scriptures are, instead, a cross section and amalgamation of significant instances in which God repeatedly revealed Himself to each generation. These instances together provide us a standard for interpreting our experiences and our rationalisations. They provide a cross reference for discerning the origins of a revelation as being from God, a human, or something else entirely (1 Jn 4). They are, as Paul writes to Timothy
…breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, 17 that the man of God[a] may be complete, equipped for every good work.2 Timothy 3:16-17 English Standard Version
The very existence of the scriptures is evidence that God reveals Himself gradually by degrees to each individual not relying on either past experience or their own rationalisations to fill in the blanks but constantly discounting human experience and worldly wisdom as being altogether useless in the pursuit of God. While the scriptures are sufficient, they are not all that God speaks through. God is the master of redundancy. What we miss in the scriptures is revealed to us in creation and what we glean from the scriptures is revealed to us again in life. Otherwise, it could not be said that “faith without works in dead” (Jas 1). The stewardship of revelation results in becoming a co-revealer taking up our place along with the rest of creation to reveal the existence of the eternally powerful divine one. Having come full circle, God has made himself known first to us and then through us to reveal Himself to the world.
2 responses to “He Makes Himself Known”
Interesting article. I can identify with some of it, but it’s also overly philosophical and esoteric
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