Galatians 1:11 But I certify you, brethren, that the gospel which was preached of me is not after man.
12 For I neither received it of man, neither was I taught it, but by the revelation of Jesus Christ.
Life is full of choices. Adam had only one choice to make. His choice was to obey God. He chose wrongly. In reality all of the choices we must make focus on that same one fact. Will we obey God or not.
As I talk with people, the conclusions always come down to that fact. I can quote a Bible verse or show them a Bible verse, and they can either accept and submit to that or they can shrug their shoulders and continue to pursue their plans. The truth is readily available. It is not that man cannot know the truth.
Pilate acted as though he was confused when Jesus stood before him. He heard a loud cry for the crucifixion of the Lord Jesus Christ. He heard false accusations made against Him. He knew the Jews had brought Jesus to him out of envy. He knew that. Yet he asked Jesus: “What is truth”. He knew he was leaning toward a wrong choice. His wife warned him to leave Jesus alone. She had suffered many things in a dream because of what Pilate was facing. Pilate stubbornly continued down the path of destruction. Jesus Christ needed to go to the cross and He did go to the cross. Pilate did not need to be the one to sign his death warrant. Jesus Christ shed His blood and died and was buried and then rose again the third day. He later ascended back up to heaven and is seated on the right hand of His Father, as the only Mediator between God and men.
Paul wrote the book of Galatians to warn those who had chosen wrongly after they were saved. Christians are not immune to making wrong choices. However, God does not want Christians to remain in their wrong choices. He makes the Truth very clear. He warns of the danger of refusing to accept the truth. He also promises blessings to those who accept the truth.
In yesterday’s study, Paul reminded the recipients of this letter that he was not an apostle because he simply wanted to be. He had no interest in being an apostle. He was a Pharisee. He had been trained by a very well known Pharisee, Gamaliel. He hated the people of “this way”. He did all he could to stop them from preaching in Jesus’ name. However, God was not dead then, and He is not dead today. God knew what Paul was doing. He knew he was not a “closet” Pharisee. He was an active follower of the lies of the Pharisees. He was interfering with the will of God for other people’s lives. God would stop him. Paul (Saul) had been offered the same choice all others receive. He knew of the message that Stephen had preached. He consented to his death. He chose to head to Damascus to imprison true saints. His intent was not to stop. He was going to continue to pursue his wicked agenda. God knew better. Saul would be stopped. He still needed to choose to turn to God. Saul rightly chose to obey God at that time. That was a wise choice to make. Now as he is writing this letter, he is challenging the saints with their need to choose wisely.
In verse 11, Paul reminded the brethren that the gospel he was preaching was not man-made. It was not mythology. It was wise for the recipients to believe what Paul was saying because it was not Paul’s message.
In verse 12, Paul reminded the saints that his message was not given by man. His message was by revelation of Jesus Christ. Paul was an apostle. He received His message directly from God. It was a needed message. The heresy of the Pharisees was addressed many times by Jesus Christ. Yet the lies of the Pharisees were still being promoted and still being believed by true saints. There was still a need for further teaching and warnings regarding this false religion.
The saints of that time, did not have easy access to the Word of God like we do today. They still had all the access they needed in order to be saved and to walk humbly with the Lord. The devil has been quite effective in casting doubt upon the truth. He did that with Eve. He also did that with Adam. Cain accepted the devil’s lie and chose to doubt God’s only acceptable sacrifice. The list goes on.
Even though we have ready access to the truth today, there are still many who live in doubt. They choose to follow lies rather than the truth. There are over 100 variations of perversions of the Word of God and many people choose to buy them and they choose to believe them. Even when they know of changes that have been made, they will argue and defend the changes. It is amazing how readily people will choose to believe a lie over the truth. It is also amazing how readily people will doubt the reality of absolute truth. At some point, every person has chosen to doubt the truth of God’s Word.
It is certainly not acceptable to God when a born again Christian chooses to doubt the truth. How can such a person have confidence in God’s gift of eternal life. If God could be wrong in one place, who is to say where that place is, and how do we then know He was only wrong in one place? If there is no accurate Word of God on earth, we are in big trouble.
Those who are willing to accept the perversions as truth have a big problem on their hands and in their hearts. They may try to convince themselves that they are safe and will go to heaven. However, they cannot have the assurance of being forgiven and going to heaven. The Bible says that the Holy Spirit testifies with our spirit that we are saved. If we choose not to believe the Word of God, which is the way the Holy Spirit testifies of the truth, how can we be confident of God’s gift of eternal life?
It is important to settle the matter of the right foundation. This is critical for any person who is saved. That is why Paul was directed by God to spend the opening verses of this letter in laying that right foundation. He would have some needed things to say and the recipients would need to know they could believe what was said. They and all saints after them would need to choose rightly and would need to throw off lies.
As with all Scripture, this letter is for all times. It is just as important for saints to know and believe the truth today. We can have full confidence in the Word of God today, if we receive it as the Word of God. When a person accepts the lies of the perversions, he no longer has the Word of God. When a person accepts the lies that are found in many of the perversions regarding Who God is, then they have a major problem. When they accept the lies written with regard to what a marriage is, that is also a major problem. There are also the lies accepted regarding the basis of a true church. These are just some examples. They were a problem in Bible times and still are today. God addresses every doubt man will have, but if a person will not accept God’s Word as Truth, there is no hope. It is important for each reader today to accept the absolute truthfulness of God’s Word. You cannot do that if you accept any one of the perversions. You know they do not agree with the KJV. You also know they do not agree with other perversions. You also know that the devil wants you to believe we cannot know for sure what God said. It is too long ago and man is so prone to making mistakes, that it cannot be possible to have a completely accurate text today. That is the lie the devil wants you to believe. If you are saved, God is showing you that it is a lie. God is showing you that He is greater than the devil and greater than the will of man. In spite of fallible man, God is capable of preserving His Word so that it is without error today.
Paul was confident of the truth in his day. We can be confident of the truth today as well. We want to be able to trust the car salesman when he sells us a car. We want to be able to trust the mechanic that fixes our car. We want to trust the carpenter that builds our house. We want to trust the salesman that sells us the house, etc. In each of these cases we know that none of the people we deal with are absolutely trustworthy. However, when it comes to God’s Word, we can completely trust God. He cannot lie. He chose holy men to write down His Word. He chose men who had the fear of God in their hearts, to recopy His Word until the time of the printing press. He watched over those who set the plates for the copying of the KJV. In spite of the corruption of our time, God is still watching over the publishing of His Word. You can have full confidence in God’s Word if you take the KJV as His Word. Keep in mind that Paul was directed to warn that those who would pervert the gospel were accursed. Don’t ignore that.