Christian teachers, especially those who had a leaning towards Gnostic speculations, took an interest in natural history, partly because of certain passages of Scripture that they wanted to explain, and partly on account of the divine revelation in the book of nature, of which also it was man's sacred duty to take proper advantage.
Thence Jacob went down south to Bethel, where he received a divine revelation (P), similar to that recorded by the earlier narrator (J), and was called Israel (xxxv.
The higher reason only has unconditional authority, and the Bible must justify itself before its tribunal; we find the history of divine revelation and its fulfilment in the Bible alone, and reason bids us regard the Bible as the only authority and canon in matters of religious belief.
Furthermore, the prevailing philosophies of the r8th century tended to demand that a real divine revelation should be one which expressed itself in a form convincing to the reason of the average plain man, whatever his predispositions might be; it was obvious that the New Testament did not wholly conform to this standard.
At the holy mount, Moses received the divine revelation and was commissioned to bring the people a three-days' journey out of Egypt to sacrifice at this spot (Exod.
During this tour he meets with persons of typically erroneous views, which it was presumably the aim of the work to refute in the interests of true Christianity, conceived as the final form of divine revelation - a revelation given through true prophecy embodied in a succession of persons, the chief of whom were Moses and the prophet whom Moses foretold, Jesus the Christ.
In dealing with the individual eschatology we must carefully distinguish the popular ideas regarding death and the hereafter which Israel shared with the other Semitic peoples, from the intuitions, inferences, aspirations evoked in the pious by the divine revelation itself.