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Galatians 4 :: English Standard Version (ESV)

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Sons and Heirs

Unchecked Copy BoxGal 4:1 - I mean that the heir, as long as he is a child, is no different from a slave,[fn] though he is the owner of everything,
Unchecked Copy BoxGal 4:2 - but he is under guardians and managers until the date set by his father.
Unchecked Copy BoxGal 4:3 - In the same way we also, when we were children, were enslaved to the elementary principles[fn] of the world.
Unchecked Copy BoxGal 4:4 - But when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law,
Unchecked Copy BoxGal 4:5 - to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons.
Unchecked Copy BoxGal 4:6 - And because you are sons, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying, “Abba! Father!”
Unchecked Copy BoxGal 4:7 - So you are no longer a slave, but a son, and if a son, then an heir through God.

Paul’s Concern for the Galatians

Unchecked Copy BoxGal 4:8 - Formerly, when you did not know God, you were enslaved to those that by nature are not gods.
Unchecked Copy BoxGal 4:9 - But now that you have come to know God, or rather to be known by God, how can you turn back again to the weak and worthless elementary principles of the world, whose slaves you want to be once more?
Unchecked Copy BoxGal 4:10 - You observe days and months and seasons and years!
Unchecked Copy BoxGal 4:11 - I am afraid I may have labored over you in vain.
Unchecked Copy BoxGal 4:12 - Brothers,[fn] I entreat you, become as I am, for I also have become as you are. You did me no wrong.
Unchecked Copy BoxGal 4:13 - You know it was because of a bodily ailment that I preached the gospel to you at first,
Unchecked Copy BoxGal 4:14 - and though my condition was a trial to you, you did not scorn or despise me, but received me as an angel of God, as Christ Jesus.
Unchecked Copy BoxGal 4:15 - What then has become of your blessedness? For I testify to you that, if possible, you would have gouged out your eyes and given them to me.
Unchecked Copy BoxGal 4:16 - Have I then become your enemy by telling you the truth?[fn]
Unchecked Copy BoxGal 4:17 - They make much of you, but for no good purpose. They want to shut you out, that you may make much of them.
Unchecked Copy BoxGal 4:18 - It is always good to be made much of for a good purpose, and not only when I am present with you,
Unchecked Copy BoxGal 4:19 - my little children, for whom I am again in the anguish of childbirth until Christ is formed in you!
Unchecked Copy BoxGal 4:20 - I wish I could be present with you now and change my tone, for I am perplexed about you.

Example of Hagar and Sarah

(Gen 21:8–21; Isa 54:1 )
Unchecked Copy BoxGal 4:21 - Tell me, you who desire to be under the law, do you not listen to the law?
Unchecked Copy BoxGal 4:22 - For it is written that Abraham had two sons, one by a slave woman and one by a free woman.
Unchecked Copy BoxGal 4:23 - But the son of the slave was born according to the flesh, while the son of the free woman was born through promise.
Unchecked Copy BoxGal 4:24 - Now this may be interpreted allegorically: these women are two covenants. One is from Mount Sinai, bearing children for slavery; she is Hagar.
Unchecked Copy BoxGal 4:25 - Now Hagar is Mount Sinai in Arabia;[fn] she corresponds to the present Jerusalem, for she is in slavery with her children.
Unchecked Copy BoxGal 4:26 - But the Jerusalem above is free, and she is our mother.
Unchecked Copy BoxGal 4:27 - For it is written,
“Rejoice, O barren one who does not bear;
break forth and cry aloud, you who are not in labor!
For the children of the desolate one will be more
than those of the one who has a husband.”
Unchecked Copy BoxGal 4:28 - Now you,[fn] brothers, like Isaac, are children of promise.
Unchecked Copy BoxGal 4:29 - But just as at that time he who was born according to the flesh persecuted him who was born according to the Spirit, so also it is now.
Unchecked Copy BoxGal 4:30 - But what does the Scripture say? “Cast out the slave woman and her son, for the son of the slave woman shall not inherit with the son of the free woman.”
Unchecked Copy BoxGal 4:31 - So, brothers, we are not children of the slave but of the free woman.
ESV Footnotes
For the contextual rendering of the Greek word doulos, see Preface; also verse 7
Or elemental spirits; also verse 9
Or Brothers and sisters; also verses 28, 31
Or by dealing truthfully with you
Some manuscripts For Sinai is a mountain in Arabia
Some manuscripts we

The Holy Bible, English Standard Version copyright © 2001, 2007, 2011, 2016 by Crossway Books and Bibles, a Publishing Ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

See detailed copyright information.

For more information on this translation, see the ESV Preface.

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