In Ezekiel 2:4 God tells Ezekiel that he is being sent to the children of Israel, “a rebellious nation,” to say to them, “thus says the Lord.” Ezekiel, throughout the entire book of prophecy bearing his name, states the same thing: thus says the Lord. (See Ezekiel 6:1, 12:17, 22:33, etc.)
This is a very important statement made in Ezekiel, and he is not alone among the prophets in its use. Jeremiah begins his book stating these were the words of the Lord (1:2,4). Indeed every book of prophecy and every vision is said to have come from God.
Related to this fact Peter writes in II Peter 1:20-21,
“knowing this first, that no prophecy of Scripture is of any private interpretation, for prophecy never came by the will of man, but holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit.”
Paul, writing to the Corinthians, gives us a similar insight. In I Corinthians 7:10 Paul says, “Now to the married I command, yet not I but the Lord…”, and in verse 25 of the same chapter he writes, “Now concerning virgins; I have no commandment from the Lord,” the dichotomy showing that Paul commanded, not of his own volition, but spoke as he received command from God. Paul confirms this in II Timothy 3:16 by telling us that, “All scripture is given by inspiration of God…” Therefore it is profitable to us.
All of these examples confirm to us that the writers of the collection of books we know as the Bible were not writing their own commands and words, or even their own interpretation of someone elses words, but were rather writing the direct commands and words of God.
Therefore, what we have is the will of God. It is His guide for our lives, and it is His testament to us of the promises (both good and evil) concerning our eternal souls.
Knowing that this is the will of God, it must be true then that every detail recorded was recorded for us because it was God’s will that it be recorded, and each book contained therein should then be considered the inspired word of God, making God’s complete will clear for us to understand and follow.
Thus it could be said that up to the time that the final book was completed and written for us, the scriptures did not contain the entire record of God. When the prophet Malachi, presumably one of the latest books written in the Old Testament, was completed, the Bible was not yet complete. It was like filling a glass only partially full. It is not yet full. The Biblical record was not “full,” if you will, till it was completed in its entirety.
If they were not complete till the last page of the scriptures was written, how then do we know that what has been recorded is really the completed word? What if there is more to come? Is the Word the complete word of God? There have been many persons over time who asked this very question, some even saying they had received an individual revelation for God. The recorded individual revelations are then presented as co-equal with God’s word, saying the word as the Bible records it was not yet complete. If these claims are true, then perhaps God as not completely revealed His will to man, and we ought to be looking for the revelations that are yet to come.
Consider the following passages of scripture:
II Peter 1:2-4:
“Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord, as His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue, by which have been given to us exceedingly great and precious promises, that through these you may be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.”
Peter tells us that we can be confident in the fact that all things pertaining to life and godliness have been given to us, and that this knowledge is enough to know how to escape corruption and partake in the divine nature.
“But even if we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel to you than what we have preached to you, let him be accursed.”
Paul is telling us that even if we receive the words of a spiritual being, if they do not speak the words of truth, the gospel, about Christ and salvation (that have already been delivered to us), let him be accursed. Why? It has to be because the gospel is already given. The mystery has been revealed, and God has delivered the ONLY plan of salvation. Paul also means to tell us that the plan is complete, and we shouldn’t be expecting any further additions to His plan.
“Truly, these times of ignorance God overlooked, but now commands all men everywhere to repent, because He has appointed a day on which He will judge the world in righteousness by the Man whom He has ordained. He has given assurance of this to all by raising Him from the dead.”
Paul, speaking to the people of Athens, tells them that there was a time when God winked at their idolatry, but now He commands them to repent. This begs the question, if God didn’t provide them, and still has not provided us with the complete record of His will, is He still winking? The question is not posed flippantly, but rather to show that God is consistent. If they had enough information to be commanded to repent, truly we do as well. The record is complete, and God’s word, will, and way are fully established for us to follow.
In Romans 10:17 we learn that, “faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” Ephesians 4:5 tells us that there is only one faith. Therefore we can conclude this one faith will only be by hearing the one word of God.
The one gospel delivered to us as the one plan of salvation, the one truth whereby we know and learn the one way, and the one faith believed upon hearing the one truth are the only plans, truths, and messages God has delivered to us and ever will deliver to us till the day this earth shall end. The record is complete and it is sufficient for our salvation.