We like the idea of direct, special revelation that speaks to our particular circumstances. Most of us don’t relish the idea of struggling in prayer, of dealing with doubt, of making a decision in the midst of uncertainty. God could clear things up so quickly with a single Word. There are many “teachers” and religious leaders who offer us guidance from the Lord of the sort that would be convenient. A part of the Kansas City Prophets movement (now the International House of Prayer) is a claim to continuing extra-canonical revelation about one’s particular circumstances. Back in the 80s and 90s, people would claim to receive revelations about what you should do with that old Chevy sitting in your back lot. It was very handy.
There is no quicker route to religious fame and fortune in America than for one to claim that one “has a Word from the Lord.” Think of it. If these people were really receiving direct revelation from God about your circumstances how that would be astounding. Of course, however, they aren’t. It’s a sort of game in which everyone knows (or comes to learn) the unstated rules. These “revelations” aren’t really that. They’re impressions, intuitions, and guesses which have been re-named as “revelations” in order to give them more authority and plausibility. If they really were revelations from God we would write them down and revere them. We would also have a quite large and fairly bizarre addition to Scripture consisting of direct commands about that 401-K account or sister Bertha’s upset stomach.
In episode 4 we wrap up this series on the “Secret of Knowing God’s Will”:
Please excuse the audio quality for the first few seconds. The first few episodes were essentially the “basement tapes” of the H’cast.