Vol.III No.XI Pg.3
December 1966

"Taught Of God"

Robert F. Turner

"It is written in the prophets, And they shall be all taught of God. Every man therefore that hath heard, and hath learned of the Father, cometh unto me" (JOH.6:45).

If we read this passage hurriedly, and without regard to context, we may think Jesus is saying we must be taught about God. That sounds reasonable; but it is not his point. Both the context and the grammatical construction of the statement show Jesus refers to source -- we must receive teaching from a divine source.

Following the feeding of the five thousand Jesus warned the people who followed Him for material reasons. He said that He was the true bread sent from heaven; (JOH.6:26-35) and that He came to do the will of God (vs.38). It is in this context that He says none can come to Him except the Father draw him. Then, "they shall be all taught of God". Their only hope was to accept Jesus, as being from God.

This same genitive construction is found in MAT.25:34, "Come ye blessed of my Father" which means that the blessings enjoyed had God as their source. See also PHI.1.

The Mysteries of the Ancients were a "feeling after" God, according to human philosophy. The Cabalist, with their numbers; the weird rites of the Egyptians; and their counterparts in the secret lodges of today -- all seek God apart from true divine revelation. The Naturalist, who seeks God in the marvels of the universe; and the philosopher, who seeks God within the confines of his own mind -- all these are doomed to failure. We must be taught of God. Truth must come from Him. A true appreciation of the idea of God enforces the need for revelation. Man can go to the earth and study the rocks. He formulates theories, and tests them by further appeal to the object of his study. He grinds the rock, heats it, analyzes it. But the very nature of God prohibits His being subject to human judgment. "Who hath known the mind of the Lord? or who hath been His counselor?" (ROM.11:33-f). If we are to know of God, He must come to us; must reveal Himself.

And that is exactly what He did in sending His Son. Paul says, "In Him dwelleth all the fullness of the God-head bodily" (COL.2:6-10). Nothing more than Christ, as teacher and perfect example, is needed. In Him alone the "Great Architect" is manifested. Through His word, the divine source, the will of God is made known to man.

"How shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation; which at the first began to be spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed unto us by them that heard him" (HEB.2:3).

Faith in God can not weather long absence from His word. We either feed on His truths, growing stronger; or we drift into a skeptical world, our original faith and knowledge being constantly diluted by human reason. Fleshly appetites become our teacher, we are "taught of the world" to use its carnal methods to gain our ends.

What a pity -- for heaven is there for those who will be taught of God.