1Now I say that as long as the heir#Nm 26:52–62 is a child, he differs in no way from a slave, though he is the owner#Col 3:22 of everything. 2Instead, he is under guardians and trustees until the time set by his father. 3In the same way we also, when we were children, were in slavery under the elements#4:3 Or spirits, or principles of the world.#Rm 7:6; 2Pt 2:20 4When the time came to completion, God sent his Son,#Jn 5:19; Heb 1:2 born of a woman,#Gn 3:15; Lk 2:7; Php 2:7 born under the law, 5to redeem those under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons.#Dt 14:1; Mt 5:9 6And because you are sons, God sent the Spirit of his Son#Ac 16:7; Rm 5:5,20; 8:9,16; 2Co 3:17 into our#4:6 Other mss read your hearts, crying, “Abba,#4:6 Aramaic for father Father!” #Mk 14:36; Rm 8:15 7So you are no longer a slave#Mt 10:24; Rv 1:1 but a son,#Dt 14:1; Mt 5:9 and if a son, then God has made you an heir.#Nm 26:52–62; Rm 4:14; 8:17
Paul’s Concern for the Galatians
8But in the past, since you didn’t know God,#Jn 7:28; Php 3:8 you were enslaved to things#4:8 Or beings that by nature are not gods. 9But now, since you know God,#Pr 2:6; Php 3:8 or rather have become known by God, how can you turn back again to the weak and worthless#Mk 14:17; Rm 15:26 elements?#Col 2:8 Do you want to be enslaved to them all over again? 10You are observing special days, months, seasons, and years.#Rm 14:5; Col 2:16 11I am fearful for you, that perhaps my labor for you has been wasted.
12I beg you, brothers and sisters: Become as I am, for I also have become as you are. You have not wronged me; 13you know#4:12–13 Or 12 Become like I am, because I — inasmuch as you are brothers and sisters — am not requesting anything of you. You wronged me. 13 You know that previously I preached the gospel to you because of a weakness of the flesh. 14You did not despise or reject me though my physical condition was a trial for you.#4:14 Other mss read me On the contrary, you received me as an angel of God, as Christ Jesus himself.
15Where, then, is your blessing? For I testify to you that, if possible, you would have torn out your eyes and given them to me. 16So then, have I become your enemy because I told you the truth?#Eph 4:15 17They court you eagerly, but not for good. They want to exclude you from me, so that you would pursue them. 18But it is always good to be pursued#4:18 Lit zealously courted in a good manner — and not just when I am with you. 19My children,#1Th 2:11 I am again suffering labor pains#1Co 4:15; Jms 1:18 for you until Christ is formed in you. 20I would like to be with you right now and change my tone of voice, because I don’t know what to do about you.
Sarah and Hagar: Two Covenants
21Tell me, you who want to be under the law, don’t you hear the law? 22For it is written that Abraham#Gn 16:15; Jn 8:37; Heb 2:16 had two sons, one by a slave#Rm 8:15,21; Heb 2:15 and the other by a free woman. 23But the one by the slave was born as a result of the flesh, while the one by the free woman was born through promise. 24These things are being taken figuratively, for the women represent two covenants. One is from Mount Sinai#Ex 16:1 and bears children into slavery — this is Hagar.#Gn 16:1 25Now Hagar represents Mount Sinai in Arabia#Is 21:13; Jr 25:24; Ezk 27:21; Gl 1:17 and corresponds to the present Jerusalem,#Mt 23:37; Ac 8:1 for she is in slavery with her children. 26But the Jerusalem above#Heb 12:22; Rv 3:12; 21:2,10 is free, and she is our mother. 27For it is written,#Ac 15:15
Rejoice, childless woman, #
Gn 11:30; Lk 1:7
unable to give birth.
Burst into song and shout,
you who are not in labor,
for the children of the desolate woman will be many,
more numerous than those
of the woman who has a husband. # 4:27 Is 54:1 #
28Now you too, brothers and sisters, like Isaac,#Ps 105:9; Jms 2:21 are children of promise.#Gn 12:7; Rm 9:8; Gl 3:29 29But just as then the child born as a result of the flesh persecuted the one born as a result of the Spirit,#Ps 51:11; Jn 1:33; Ac 2:4; Rm 8:9; Gl 5:25; Ti 3:5; Rv 3:22 so also now.#Gn 21:9 30But what does the Scripture say? “Drive out the slave and her son, for the son of the slave will never be a coheir with the son of the free woman.”#4:30Gn 21:10#Gn 21:10 31Therefore, brothers and sisters, we are not children of a slave but of the free woman.#1Pt 3:6