I read someone say today that we need to teach the government and that this is equivalent to making disciples of all nations. This is an error, we need to call the government and every other person in this world to repent and believe the gospel. Then and only then will human beings be receptive to obedience to God’s law and conform their lives to Christ’s commands.
In my study in Galatians on authority, I came across a note on 1:11 which reads:
Paul is concerned here to show that no-one can be educated into the kingdom of God. This was another blow to the claims of the Judaizers. Paul had not, he says, learned his gospel in the presumed Christian catechetical schools of Jerusalem. Where then had he learned it? It had come directly through a revelation (apokalypsis, ‘unveiling’) of Jesus Christ, he says.1
So, the point is this: We need revelation not merely education to be saved. And we need to be saved not merely educated about how the people of God are to live. Moses can lead you to the land, but cannot take you in. You need Joshua (Heb. Yeshua) i.e. Jesus to take you to the promised land by grace alone.
Paul’s education only made sense once he had received revelation. Jesus is the one who was revealed to him. Without Jesus life just doesn’t make sense; nothing makes sense without Jesus.
We must “preach Him, warning everyone.” Then follows, “and teaching everyone with all wisdom that we may present everyone mature in Christ” (cf. Colossians 1:28)!
When you have the revelation of the Word of God, it must be proclaimed. And Preaching is the means by which the lost are saved, and then equipped to live aright for God’s glory. But mere teaching one how to live without giving them the authoritative message of the gospel, and the call to repent and believe saves no one.
We need the authoritative Word of God proclaimed. We need revelation, not merely education. Yes, we need both, but we have nothing without the Word of God. We have nothing without God’s Son being revealed to us and explaining the Scriptures to us as we walk along the way (cf. Luke 24).
Is there someone today that you need to tell about Jesus? Tell them of who he is, what he has done, and what he calls all men to do in response. Perhaps you want to change someone so badly and you have been laboring to merely educate them, but now you know clearly they need Jesus revealed to them. Pray God would reveal Jesus to them as they hear you proclaim who Jesus is and what Jesus has done and what they must do in response to Jesus.
Tyndale New Testament Commentary
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