The Two Books that Reveal God

Gerald R. Baron
11 min readJan 27, 2024
Image: Wikipedia, unsplash

How can anyone know God? At the beginning of the emergence of science in the western world, it was widely believed that knowledge of God could be gained through two books: the book of revelation and the book of nature. Is this still possible today?

It seems inconceivable to a great many that someone could take the Bible seriously as God’s divinely inspired and revealed word and at the same time take science seriously. Taking science seriously means accepting the general scientific consensus as representing our best ideas of what is true and real. Taking the Bible seriously means believing that within the stories, poetry, history and letters we can learn meaningful and true things about God.

I recognize that seems strange to many, but I do believe both books reveal truth and that there is only one truth. Here I will attempt to explain my understanding of the two primary ways we can know God.

Sacred Scripture

Believers of almost any religion hold some written texts to be sacred. By this they mean in some way they are touched by the divine and have a higher status in terms of trustworthiness in revealing the truth than other works not considered sacred. Christians hold the Hebrew Bible plus the New Testament to be the revealed word of God. Jews consider the Tanakh or Hebrew Bible the revealed word. Islam’s sacred scripture is the Qur’an, Hinduism holds the Vedas and the Upanishads as sacred. Buddhism the Tripitaka and various anthologies, Taoism the Tao Te Ching and Spiritism the Five Fundamental Works of Spiritism.

Many of these make reference to nature and to explanations of how their conception of the Ultimate relates to nature. For example, in Advaita Vedanta, the conception of the Ultimate as Brahman or Ishvara as the only reality is considerably different from the theistic view of a transcendent Creator and immanent sustainer of the Abrahamic or biblical faiths. Overall it is generally seen that writers of the Bible are unique in pointing not only to the accepted collection of books as revealing God, but also nature.

This is found particularly in this famous quotation from the Apostle Paul in his letter to the Romans, chapter 1 verses 20 and 21:

“For his [the Creator’s] invisible attributes, namely, his…

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Gerald R. Baron

Dawdling at the intersection of faith, science, philosophy and theology.