4 I mean that the heir, as long as he is a child, is no different from a slave,[a] though he is the owner of everything,2 but he is under guardians and managers until the date set by his father.3 In the same way we also, when we were children, were enslaved to the elementary principles[b] of the world.4 But when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law,5 to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons.6 And because you are sons, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying, “Abba! Father!”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
8 Formerly, when you did not know God, you were enslaved to those that by nature are not gods.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?10 You observe days and months and seasons and years!11 I am afraid I may have labored over you in vain.
12 Brothers,[c]I entreat you, become as I am, for I also have become as you are. You did me no wrong.13 You know it was because of a bodily ailment that I preached the gospel to you at first,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.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.16 Have I then become your enemy by telling you the truth?[d]17 They make much of you, but for no good purpose. They want to shut you out, that you may make much of them.18 It is always good to be made much of for a good purpose, and not only when I am present with you,19 my little children, for whom I am again in the anguish of childbirth until Christ is formed in you!20 I wish I could be present with you now and change my tone, for I am perplexed about you.
Galatians 4:1For the contextual rendering of the Greek word doulos, see Preface; also verse 7
You'll get this book and many others when you join Bible Gateway Plus. Learn more
You must be logged in to view your newly purchased content. Please log in below or if you don't have an account, creating one is easy and only takes a few moments. After you log in your content will be available in your library.
Step 1 - Create an account or log in to start your free trial.
Starting your free trial of Bible Gateway Plus is easy. You’re already logged in with your Bible Gateway account. The next step is to enter your payment information. Your credit card won’t be charged until the trial period is over. You can cancel anytime during the trial period.
Click the button below to continue.
Step 1 - Create an account or log in to start your subscription.
You’ve already claimed your free trial of Bible Gateway Plus. To subscribe at our regular subscription rate of $3.99/month, click the button below.
For the best Bible Gateway experience, upgrade to Bible Gateway Plus. For less than the cost of a latte each month, you'll gain access to a vast digital Bible study library and reduced banner ads to minimize distractions from God's Word. Try it free for 30 days!