Hiding the Truth in Plain Sight — Understanding God’s Methods of Hiding Information in the Bible! Pt 5
(Ver 1.3) This is part five of a series of advanced Bible study lessons on the methods that God has used to conceal information in the Bible for us to find. By studying, learning and understanding these methods we will greatly increase our ability to understand the real truth of God’s Word. We have already discussed that God uses various methods of hiding information of which I have first mentioned has consisted of Him spreading the information out randomly over the entire Bible in an unorganized pattern which causes it to be difficult for us to find all of the verses on any related subjects. I like to call this the truth seed scattering method of hiding truth. It is very much like a farmer out in his field planting seeds to produce a single crop. The seeds fall in random order but they all grow together in unison to make up the unified crop to harvest. That is exactly like the Word of God was designed. You can find subjects throughout the Bible and they must all be considered equally when interpreting the Bible. Other methods we have talked about are God’s usage of figurative language, God’s usage of symbolism and symbolic representations and God’s usage of parables. If you have not read these lessons from the beginning I would strongly suggest that you go back and start with “Part 1“.
Technique 5: Referring to the Same Thing Using Multiple Names, Titles or Descriptions
Another very common method of hiding information in the Bible is something that God uses very often and it is literally a very tricky method of hiding information. You see if God wanted to tell you something and He wanted to make it harder to find, one method might be that He could depict it using different descriptions, terms, titles or names. God could be talking about the exact same thing, but this makes it significantly more difficult to associate and put the pieces together correctly. What if your Bible study subject was about “the words that people speak” or just “spoken words”. Have you ever thought how you would attempt to find every verse in the Bible that refers to this one subject so that you could potentially gain a thorough knowledge on it? You would have to search the Bible for “word”, “words”, “speech”, “speeches”, “spoken”, “spoke”, “speak”, “speaker”, “say”, “saying”, “sayings”, “tell”, “told”, “console”, “consoled”, “council”, “commune”, “communicate”, “converse”, “demand”, “demanded”, “demands”, “command”, “commanded”, “commandment”, “commands”, “talk”, “talks”, “talker”, “voice”, “voices”, “breath”, “mouth”, “lips”, “tongue”, “tongues”, “whisper”, “whispers”, “whispered”, “question”, “questions”, “questioned”, “ask”, “asked”, “asks”, “inquire”, “inquiring”, “inquired”, “request”, “requests’, “requested”, “utter”, “uttered”, “utters”, “babble”, “utterance”, “declare”, “declared”, “declares”, “inspire”, “inspired”, “inspiration”, “encourage”, “encouragement”, “correct”, “corrected”, “correction”, “scorn”, “sarcasm”, “mockery”, “cynicism”, “irony”, “ironic”, “sound”, “sounds”, just to name a few of the obvious ones. How many other words am I leaving out that can be taken as “spoken words”? What about the truth, a lie, or lies, or lying? What about someone who prays or is praying, or has prayed, isn’t that speaking words to God? This is the root of the problem, there are so many other synonymous words that I did not include and then there are also some not so obvious ones that are very difficult to find. For example, what about a babbling brook or a flame of fire? What about a reference to a fountain, a rudder, a bit or a bridle? What about the fruit of your lips? Jesus said “out of your belly shall flow rivers of living water.” That is a not so obvious reference to something coming out of their mouths and it must be their spoken words. This verse does not mention words directly nor even have a direct reference to the area of the mouth, but yet it speaks about something coming out of an area of the body that normally you put stuff into, to feed your body. That is very tricky, if you ask me. Then the Bible describes Jesus as the man with the sharp two-edged sword coming out of his mouth, and again that is a symbolic reference talking about His spoken words. Words are described in terms of a weapon that cuts two ways. That is some very powerful information on the subject of spoken words, yet how would you find it and recognize the significance?
I do hope you grasp what I’m saying for it is very important that you do. There are so many ways to describe and speak about any subject that it makes it very difficult to think of them all, much less to find all of them in the Bible. You would have to read the Bible from cover to cover on every Bible study, paying very close attention to every word to see if it is related to the subject you are searching for. Even then many of the references could be symbolic, figurative, or some other reference that makes it difficult to recognize with just a surface reading.
So let’s talk about the “devil” or Satan. How many different Bible verses can you come up with that describe this spiritual being in not so obvious terms. I can think of a bunch so I’ll give you a few examples to get you started in thinking of new ways to recognize this technique used in the Bible. Satan is called the “serpent”, the “dragon”, the “deceiver”, the “accuser”, the “prince of this world”, the “god of this world”, the “thief”, the “enemy”, the “ruler of the darkness”, “Lucifer”, “Beelzebub”, the “moon”, and I probably could go on and on. Wouldn’t it have been easier, if God had always called Satan by the name “Satan” and then we would have been able to understand when He was talking about him in a more precise and clear manner? Of course it would! But nobody said the Bible was simple! God intentionally designed every word of the Bible to conceal and reveal information.
By calling one thing by a multitude of different names or titles, you make it significantly more difficult to find and understand them. But God can also give new implied information in using this technique. For example, one of the first times that Satan is mentioned in the Bible, he is called “the serpent” (Genesis 3). But, in Revelation 12 he is called “the dragon”. We are also clearly told in Revelation 12 that the dragon was the ancient serpent. Therefore, both are symbolic references to the same spiritual entity. However, you can infer from these two references some qualities that have transpired or have developed in the course of time over the last 6000 years. Satan who was called the serpent was a much smaller and insignificant spiritual being in Genesis. As a symbolic serpent he was a manageable force. But, now as a great red dragon in Revelation he has implied growth and strength which also infers a much greater power. In other words, Satan is a much larger formidable spiritual opponent in Revelation than he was in Genesis. This information was given to us indirectly by God using two different symbolic references for the same spiritual being called Satan. If you would like to read my lesson on the “Names, Titles, Descriptions and Symbols of Satan” found in the Bible it would be worth your time to go and check it out.
I’ll give you one more example, since this subject is so vitally important to correct Bible interpretation. God calls the sun by multiple names and descriptions. If you just searched the Bible for the obvious word “sun” you would miss some of the most important verses in the Bible on the subject. By only searching for the obvious “sun”, you will miss the not so obvious ways to describe the sun. The very first reference in the Bible of the “sun” is found in Genesis 1 on the 4th day of creation and God calls the sun the “greater light” in Genesis 1:16. The “Greater Light” is the prophetic symbolic ruler of the day and of course represents a symbolic type of Jesus Christ who was to come to the earth on the 4th day (4000 years) of human history. Then in 2 Peter 1:19 God calls the sun the “Day Star“. If you understand astronomy you understand our sun is nothing but our closest star that lights our days. This is a physical reality that symbolizes a spiritual reality. In this verse in 2 Peter, Jesus is again called the Sun that rises in the hearts of men. Finally, in Revelation 22:16 the sun is given another completely different name and is called the “Bright and Morning Star“. Again this is literally speaking about the sun. This verse in Revelation is Jesus speaking directly to us and claiming to be the Sun of Righteousness found in Malachi. Then in 1 John 2:8 we find a symbolic sun being referred to as the “true light“. That is radically important to the subject of the sun, but a reference that would be very hard to find. So if you just searched the Bible for the term “sun”, you missed three or four of the most important verses on the subject. To adequately satisfy the subject you would need to start with the obvious references of the “sun”, “day”, “daylight”, “light”, “morning”, “dawn” and then be smart enough to look for the not so obvious ones like “star”.
Another technique that I haven’t spoken of yet is opposite or antithesis truths. To understand “day” you might also have to understand “night”. To understand the “Sun” you might also need to understand the “moon”. To understand “light” you might also need to understand “darkness”. Many times in the Bible a subject is covered by speaking about what it is not. Light is not darkness so when God tells you about “darkness” you can infer some meaning to what light is. It can get very complicated and I know you will get it if you start to look for it. I also just gave you a small sample of the names of Jesus found in the Bible, if you would like you can go to “Names, Titles, Descriptions and Symbols of Jesus” found in the Bible and begin to recognize how many ways there are to describe one person. It is almost overwhelming.
Begin to recognize that there are literally dozens of ways to describe the same thing. God can be talking about the same thing in multiple verses, but calling them by different names. All this does is make it more difficult and challenging for us to figure it all out. I do hope you get it! This is a very prevalent and widespread technique used by God to conceal information in the Bible. Why, because you probably didn’t realize that there were so many multiple ways of naming something. Things, events, people, and places in the Bible are often referred to using different titles and names based upon different descriptive qualities and attributes. I can’t tell you how important it is that you grasp this concept and know this technique of hiding information in the Bible. Using this knowledge alone will cause you to learn more than you can imagine.
If you would like to continue reading this series, please continue to “Part 6“.
Posted on March 5, 2010, in Bible Interpretation, Keys to Understanding and tagged Bible, Christianity, Church, God, Interpretation, Jesus, Prophecy, Revelation, Satan, Truth, understanding. Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.