This is one of the five most common questions that people ask when they are shown how to rightly divide the Scriptures. It is so common because society has taught us to rely solely on the conclusions of scholarship, to ‘go with the flow’, and that what is popular is accepted as right.
However, if we are to rely on the Word of God as our final authority and not popularity or the status quo then we must ‘compare spiritual things with spiritual’, as God instructs in 1 Cor 2:13.
Romans 3:4 tells us that we should ‘let God be true and every man a liar’. This does not mean that every man is wrong, but that God is always right. So then, instead of asking ‘Who else teaches this’ we should be asking, ‘Does God teach this?’
We read in Galatians 1:11 that Christ revealed to Paul a message that was ‘not after man’:
“But I certify you, brethren, THAT THE GOSPEL WHICH WAS PREACHED OF ME IS NOT AFTER MAN. FOR I NEITHER RECEIVED IT OF MAN, NEITHER WAS I TAUGHT IT, BUT BY THE REVELATION OF JESUS CHRIST.” – Galatians 1:11-12
Paul’s message was not taught to him, but he received it by revelation. The content was not known by anyone before Paul, as explained in Colossians 1:25-26, it was a mystery:
“Whereof I am made a minister, ACCORDING TO THE DISPENSATION OF GOD WHICH IS GIVEN TO ME FOR YOU, TO FULFILL THE WORD OF GOD. EVEN THE MYSTERY WHICH HATH BEEN HID FROM AGES AND FROM GENERATIONS, BUT NOW IS MADE MANIFEST TO HIS SAINTS.” – Col 1:25-26
Paul tells us in 2 Tim 2:15 to ‘study to show ourselves approved unto God’ and to ‘rightly divide the word of truth’:
Although there have been many men in the past that have labored to make known this message of Paul’s distinct message of Grace revealed by Jesus, the truth of the message does not depend on popularity but in Scripture.
There are many who will make themselves ashamed before God because they did not study the Scriptures or rightly divide the word of truth. Paul dealt with a similar issue of popularity and credibility in his ministry, and replied to it in 2 Corinthians 10:12-13:
“FOR WE DARE NOT MAKE OURSELVES OF THE NUMBER, OR COMPARE OURSELVES WITH SOME THAT COMMEND THEMSELVES: BUT THEY MEASURING THEMSELVES BY THEMSELVES, AND COMPARING THEMSELVES AMONG THEMSELVES, are not wise. But we will not boast of things without our measure, but ACCORDING TO THE MEASURE OF THE RULE WHICH GOD HATH DISTRIBUTED TO US, a measure to reach even unto you.“ – 1 Corinthians 10:12-13