Passage: Galatians 3, 4 (RSV)

Galatians 3

1O foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you, before whose eyes Jesus Christ was publicly portrayed as crucified?
2Let me ask you only this: Did you receive the Spirit by works of the law, or by hearing with faith?
3Are you so foolish? Having begun with the Spirit, are you now ending with the flesh?
4Did you experience so many things in vain? -- if it really is in vain.
5Does he who supplies the Spirit to you and works miracles among you do so by works of the law, or by hearing with faith?
6Thus Abraham "believed God, and it was reckoned to him as righteousness."
7So you see that it is men of faith who are the sons of Abraham.
8And the scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, preached the gospel beforehand to Abraham, saying, "In you shall all the nations be blessed."
9So then, those who are men of faith are blessed with Abraham who had faith.
10For all who rely on works of the law are under a curse; for it is written, "Cursed be every one who does not abide by all things written in the book of the law, and do them."
11Now it is evident that no man is justified before God by the law; for "He who through faith is righteous shall live";
12but the law does not rest on faith, for "He who does them shall live by them."
13Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law, having become a curse for us -- for it is written, "Cursed be every one who hangs on a tree" --
14that in Christ Jesus the blessing of Abraham might come upon the Gentiles, that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.
15To give a human example, brethren: no one annuls even a man's will, or adds to it, once it has been ratified.
16Now the promises were made to Abraham and to his offspring. It does not say, "And to offsprings," referring to many; but, referring to one, "And to your offspring," which is Christ.
17This is what I mean: the law, which came four hundred and thirty years afterward, does not annul a covenant previously ratified by God, so as to make the promise void.
18For if the inheritance is by the law, it is no longer by promise; but God gave it to Abraham by a promise.
19Why then the law? It was added because of transgressions, till the offspring should come to whom the promise had been made; and it was ordained by angels through an intermediary.
20Now an intermediary implies more than one; but God is one.
21Is the law then against the promises of God? Certainly not; for if a law had been given which could make alive, then righteousness would indeed be by the law.
22But the scripture consigned all things to sin, that what was promised to faith in Jesus Christ might be given to those who believe.
23Now before faith came, we were confined under the law, kept under restraint until faith should be revealed.
24So that the law was our custodian until Christ came, that we might be justified by faith.
25But now that faith has come, we are no longer under a custodian;
26for in Christ Jesus you are all sons of God, through faith.
27For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ.
28There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus.
29And if you are Christ's, then you are Abraham's offspring, heirs according to promise.

Galatians 4

1I mean that the heir, as long as he is a child, is no better than a slave, though he is the owner of all the estate;
2but he is under guardians and trustees until the date set by the father.
3So with us; when we were children, we were slaves to the elemental spirits of the universe.
4But when the time had fully come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law,
5to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons.
6And because you are sons, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying, "Abba! Father!"
7So through God you are no longer a slave but a son, and if a son then an heir.
8Formerly, when you did not know God, you were in bondage to beings that by nature are no gods;
9but 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 beggarly elemental spirits, whose slaves you want to be once more?
10You observe days, and months, and seasons, and years!
11I am afraid I have labored over you in vain.
12Brethren, I beseech you, become as I am, for I also have become as you are. You did me no wrong;
13you know it was because of a bodily ailment that I preached the gospel to you at first;
14and 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.
15What has become of the satisfaction you felt? For I bear you witness that, if possible, you would have plucked out your eyes and given them to me.
16Have I then become your enemy by telling you the truth?
17They make much of you, but for no good purpose; they want to shut you out, that you may make much of them.
18For a good purpose it is always good to be made much of, and not only when I am present with you.
19My little children, with whom I am again in travail until Christ be formed in you!
20I could wish to be present with you now and to change my tone, for I am perplexed about you.
21Tell me, you who desire to be under law, do you not hear the law?
22For it is written that Abraham had two sons, one by a slave and one by a free woman.
23But the son of the slave was born according to the flesh, the son of the free woman through promise.
24Now this is an allegory: these women are two covenants. One is from Mount Sinai, bearing children for slavery; she is Hagar.
25Now Hagar is Mount Sinai in Arabia; she corresponds to the present Jerusalem, for she is in slavery with her children.
26But the Jerusalem above is free, and she is our mother.
27For it is written, "Rejoice, O barren one who does not bear; break forth and shout, you who are not in travail; for the children of the desolate one are many more than the children of her that is married."
28Now we, brethren, like Isaac, are children of promise.
29But as at that time he who was born according to the flesh persecuted him who was born according to the Spirit, so it is now.
30But what does the scripture say? "Cast out the slave and her son; for the son of the slave shall not inherit with the son of the free woman."
31So, brethren, we are not children of the slave but of the free woman.

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