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Read Introduction to Galatians


“For I neither received it from man, nor was I taught it, but it came through the revelation of Jesus Christ”


For I neither received it from man,

The source of Paul’s gospel of grace is not from his associations with people. Paul did not receive the gospel from anyone other than the Lord Himself. His gospel was not a man-manufactured message. Paul did not invent the grace of God, nor did he spin it out of his own spiritual cocoon.

nor was I taught it,

The word “taught” means to teach didactically by a course of instruction (Matthew 4:23; 9:35; Romans 12:7; Romans 15:4; 1 Corinthians 4:17; 1 Timothy 2:12; 4:11). No one imparted the gospel of grace to Paul by instruction. Peter, John, or James did not teach him at the Jerusalem Theological Seminary.

Ananias taught Paul some basics shortly after he became a Christian. Paul’s point in this passage is not that anyone ever at any time taught him about things in general. His point is that he received the gospel of grace exclusively from the Lord Jesus Christ.

but it came through the revelation of Jesus Christ

Paul went to seminary at the feet of Jesus Christ. He could have no better seminary professor.

The word “revelation” means uncovering or unveiling. Jesus took the scales off Paul’s eyes about the gospel (Acts 26:4-19). The gospel came to Paul like a dramatic unveiling of a new statue in the football hall of Fame. Jesus removed the veil of darkness over his eyes and made the gospel fully known to him independently by direct revelation (Ga 1:17,18). When Paul connected to the apostles, his message was the same as their gospel.

Jesus Christ is both the revealed and the revelator (Ga 1:16; Acts 9:3-8). Paul, the erstwhile Saul of Tarsus, personally received the gospel of grace from the Lord Jesus. Human beings had nothing to do with it. There was no personal evangelism involved in his salvation. Paul was the head of a goon squad on his way to Damascus to slaughter Christians when the Lord revealed Himself to him. He did not anticipate this direct revelation from the Lord either in his salvation or in his experience of being taught directly by God after his salvation. His plan was not to become a Christian, but the Lord turned him right about-face (Acts 9:5,6).


The Bible is not man’s message but God’s.


We are accustomed to thinking of the Holy Spirit as the revealer of truth, but Jesus revealed the truth to the apostles. The gospel message is supernatural, whether from the Holy Spirit or the Lord Jesus. Human rhetoric does not win people to Christ; the miracle of the gospel of Christ’s grace transforms lives. Oratory is of little consequence in the final analysis. No human being can win anyone to Christ without the convicting work of the Holy Spirit.

The source of the Christian gospel is direct revelation. The Christian can be sure about truth because he deductively receives truth from God through the Bible. No one can find final truth by inductive methods– such as science uses–because man is finite and cannot arrive at infinite truth by his pint-sized brain. The Bible is the Supreme Court, beyond which there is no appeal.