Home > Law & Grace, Voegtlin > Repost: Paidagogos & Schoolmaster

Repost: Paidagogos & Schoolmaster

July 27, 2009

It is important to any understanding of Scripture that we realize the significance and meaning of the message that was first delivered to the saints. To know what Scripture means to us today, we must understand what it meant to the original recipients of the Word. This is not a difficult task, but it is one that must be recognized.

Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith. Galatians 3:24

When New Testament Christians read this verse, they learned that the law was a paidagogos. When they saw that word, they would never have thought of a schoolmaster as we do today. The paidagogos was more like what we might think of as an escort or a bodyguard. This servant’s job was to protect the child from evil influences and guarantee that he arrived at the teacher’s house. He didn’t teach anything except what not to do, and he normally taught that with a rod or switch. The paidagogos brought the child to the schoolmaster. The schoolmaster taught the child what he needed to know to be a citizen.

The law protected the nation of Israel and preserved the lineage of Christ, so that Christ could teach us how to become citizens. The law (the paidagogos) brought us to Christ (the master teacher) so we could learn that true living comes by faith.

Christ is the master teacher. The law is a ruthless slave. If you want to know how to live, look to Christ, not the law.

Originally posted August 7, 2007
Categories: Law & Grace, Voegtlin
  1. July 28, 2009 at 6:43 am

    Although I agree with everything you say in this article, I think you leave a door opened for those who have a distorted view of the doctrine of Grace to take a liberal view of the Law, rather than what Christ intended.

    I think the main problem with Young Fundamentalism, New Evangelicalism, and the Emerging Church philosophies is a complete misunderstanding of the doctrine of grace. I have put up a couple of articles on this at my blog: http://lineuponlinedmm.blogspot.com/

    The latest is: I. Dealing with the Errant Definitions of Legalism & Liberalism


  2. July 28, 2009 at 6:53 am

    Would it close the door a little if I said that the evidence of faith is obedience. The just have life because of grace, but we live by faith, and faith obeys even when it doesn’t understand.

  3. July 28, 2009 at 7:10 am

    Yes, it would. However, obedience apart from the supernatural enabling of the indwelling Holy Spirit is mere Legalism. Therefore, the question of living by faith is, faith in WHAT?

    However, detailing what it means to live by grace through faith (the justified shall live by faith) is really critical. This, in my opinion, is where the failure has been within those taking a strict interpretation of the Word of God (us) and why the Young Fundamentalist, New Evangelicals, and Emergent Churchers have developed.

    It is not enough to point out their errors. We must point out the SOURCE of those errors in their aberrant, heretical understanding of the doctrine of Grace.

    Perhaps the reason we have failed to point that out is because we have not fully developed a thorough understanding of the doctrine of Grace ourselves. It is time that we do. This requires that we take our Pneumatology to a much more definitive level of both understanding and explanation. I think we have failed in this area for many years.

  4. Lurker
    August 6, 2009 at 6:11 pm

    This is a good thought Pastor V. I’ve noticed of late that yourself and Pastor Mallinak rarely if ever post or comment here anywmore. Has the trio of jackhammers become a mono? I know you folks must be busy, but I for one have missed your input. I’m sure your congregations need you more than faithful readers/lurkers like myself, but is the great group blog experiment ending? I keep coming back to read and learn from Pastor Brandenburg, but the other two jackhammers are missed. I learned a lot from your postings on a host of issues, so thank you both. Will we be reading more of you, or has the demands of ministry limited your ability to contribute more?

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