Sons and Heirs
4 I mean that the heir, as long as he is a child, is no different from a slave,1 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, cwere enslaved to the elementary principles2 of the world. 4 But dwhen the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son, eborn fof woman, born gunder the law, 5 hto redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive iadoption as sons. 6 And because you are sons, God has sent jthe 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 kan heir through God.
Paul’s Concern for the Galatians
8 Formerly, when you ldid not know God, you mwere enslaved to those that by nature nare not gods. 9 But now that you have come to know God, or rather oto be known by God, phow can you turn back again to qthe weak and worthless elementary principles of the world, whose slaves you want to be once more? 10 rYou observe days and months and seasons and years! 11 I am afraid sI may have labored over you in vain.
12 Brothers,3 tI entreat you, become as I am, for I also have become as you are. uYou did me no wrong. 13 You know it was vbecause of a bodily ailment that I preached the gospel to you wat first, 14 and though my condition was a trial to you, you did not scorn or despise me, but received me xas an angel of God, yas 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 ztelling you the truth?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. 18 It is always good to be made much of for a good purpose, and anot only when I am present with you, 19 bmy little children, cfor whom I am again in the anguish of childbirth until Christ dis formed in you! 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
21 Tell me, you who desire to be under the law, do you not listen to the law? 22 For it is written that Abraham had two sons, eone by a slave woman and fone by a free woman. 23 But gthe son of the slave was born according to the flesh, while hthe son of the free woman was born through promise. 24 Now this may be interpreted allegorically: these women are two icovenants. jOne is from Mount Sinai, bearing children for slavery; she is Hagar. 25 Now Hagar is Mount Sinai in Arabia;5 she corresponds to the present Jerusalem, for she is in slavery with her children. 26 But kthe Jerusalem above is free, and she is our mother. 27 For it is written,
l“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.”
28 Now you,6 brothers, mlike Isaac, nare children of promise. 29 But just as at that time he who was born according to the flesh opersecuted him who was born according to the Spirit, pso also it is now. 30 But what does the Scripture say? q“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.” 31 So, brothers, we are not children of the slave but rof the free woman.
Christ Has Set Us Free
2 Look: I, Paul, say to you that xif you accept circumcision, yChrist will be of no advantage to you. 3 I testify again to every man who accepts circumcision that zhe is obligated to keep the whole law. 4 You are asevered from Christ, byou who would be justified1 by the law; cyou have fallen away from grace. 5 For through the Spirit, by faith, we ourselves eagerly dwait for the hope of righteousness. 6 For in Christ Jesus eneither circumcision nor uncircumcision counts for anything, but fonly faith working through love.
7 gYou were running well. Who hindered you from obeying hthe truth? 8 This persuasion is not from ihim who calls you. 9 jA little leaven leavens the whole lump. 10 kI have confidence in the Lord that you will ltake no other view, and mthe one who is troubling you will bear the penalty, whoever he is. 11 But if I, brothers,2 still preach3 circumcision, nwhy am I still being persecuted? In that case othe offense of the cross has been removed. 12 I wish pthose who unsettle you would emasculate themselves!
13 For you were called to freedom, brothers. qOnly do not use your freedom as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love rserve one another. 14 For sthe whole law is fulfilled in one word: t“You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” 15 But if you ubite and devour one another, watch out that you are not consumed by one another.
Keep in Step with the Spirit
16 But I say, vwalk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify wthe desires of the flesh. 17 For xthe desires of the flesh are against the Spirit, and the desires of the Spirit are against the flesh, for these are opposed to each other, yto keep you from doing the things you want to do. 18 But if you are zled by the Spirit, ayou are not under the law. 19 Now bthe works of the flesh are evident: sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality, 20 idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions, cdivisions, 21 envy,4 drunkenness, orgies, and things like these. I warn you, as I warned you before, that dthose who do5 such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. 22 But ethe fruit of the Spirit is flove, joy, peace, patience, gkindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 hgentleness, iself-control; jagainst such things there is no law. 24 And those who belong to Christ Jesus khave crucified the flesh with its lpassions and desires.
Bear One Another’s Burdens
6 Brothers,1 oif anyone is caught in any transgression, pyou who are spiritual should restore him in qa spirit of gentleness. Keep watch on yourself, lest you too be tempted. 2 rBear one another’s burdens, and sso fulfill tthe law of Christ. 3 For uif anyone thinks he is something, vwhen he is nothing, he deceives himself. 4 But let each one wtest his own work, and then his reason to boast will be in himself alone and not in his neighbor. 5 For xeach will have to bear his own load.
6 yLet the one who is taught the word share all good things with the one who teaches. 7 zDo not be deceived: God is not mocked, for awhatever one sows, that will he also reap. 8 For bthe one who sows to his own flesh cwill from the flesh reap corruption, but dthe one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life. 9 And elet us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, fif we do not give up. 10 So then, gas we have opportunity, let us hdo good to everyone, and especially to those who are iof the household of faith.
Final Warning and Benediction
11 See with what large letters I am writing to you jwith my own hand. 12 kIt is those who want to make a good showing in the flesh lwho would force you to be circumcised, and only min order that they may not be persecuted for the cross of Christ. 13 For even those who are circumcised do not themselves keep the law, but they desire to have you circumcised that they may boast in your flesh. 14 But far be it from me to boast nexcept in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by which2 the world ohas been crucified to me, and I to the world. 15 For pneither circumcision counts for anything, nor uncircumcision, but qa new creation. 16 And as for all who walk by this rule, rpeace and mercy be upon them, and upon sthe Israel of God.
17 From now on let no one cause me trouble, for I bear on my body the marks of Jesus.
2 dGrace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
Spiritual Blessings in Christ
3 eBlessed be fthe God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing gin the heavenly places, 4 heven as he ichose us in him jbefore the foundation of the world, that we should be kholy and blameless before him. In love 5 lhe predestined us2 for madoption to himself as sons through Jesus Christ, naccording to the purpose of his will, 6 oto the praise of his glorious grace, with which he has blessed us in pthe Beloved. 7 qIn him we have rredemption sthrough his blood, tthe forgiveness of our trespasses, uaccording to the riches of his grace, 8 which he lavished upon us, in all wisdom and insight 9 vmaking known3 to us the mystery of his will, naccording to his purpose, which he wset forth in Christ 10 as a plan for xthe fullness of time, yto unite all things in him, things in heaven and things on earth.
11 In him we have obtained zan inheritance, ahaving been predestined baccording to the purpose of him who works all things according to cthe counsel of his will, 12 so that we who were the first to hope in Christ might be dto the praise of his glory. 13 In him you also, when you heard ethe word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, fwere sealed with the gpromised Holy Spirit, 14 who is hthe guarantee4 of our iinheritance until jwe acquire kpossession of it,5 lto the praise of his glory.
Thanksgiving and Prayer
15 For this reason, mbecause I have heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love6 toward all the saints, 16 I ndo not cease to give thanks for you, oremembering you in my prayers, 17 that pthe God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, qmay give you the Spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of him, 18 rhaving the eyes of your hearts enlightened, that you may know what is sthe hope to which he has called you, what are tthe riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, 19 and what is the immeasurable greatness of his power toward us who believe, uaccording to the working of vhis great might 20 that he worked in Christ wwhen he raised him from the dead and xseated him at his right hand yin the heavenly places, 21 zfar above aall rule and authority and power and dominion, and above bevery name that is named, not only in cthis age but also in the one to come. 22 And dhe put all things under his feet and gave him as ehead over all things to the church, 23 fwhich is his body, gthe fullness of him hwho fills iall in all.
By Grace Through Faith
2 jAnd you were kdead in the trespasses and sins 2 lin which you once walked, following the course of this world, following mthe prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in nthe sons of disobedience— 3 among whom we all once lived in othe passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body1 and the mind, and pwere by nature qchildren of wrath, like the rest of mankind.2 4 But3 God, being rrich in mercy, sbecause of the great love with which he loved us, 5 even twhen we were dead in our trespasses, umade us alive together with Christ—vby grace you have been saved— 6 and raised us up with him and wseated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, 7 so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable xriches of his grace in ykindness toward us in Christ Jesus. 8 For zby grace you have been saved athrough faith. And this is bnot your own doing; cit is the gift of God, 9 dnot a result of works, eso that no one may boast. 10 For fwe are his workmanship, gcreated in Christ Jesus hfor good works, iwhich God prepared beforehand, jthat we should walk in them.
One in Christ
11 Therefore remember that at one time you Gentiles in the flesh, called “the uncircumcision” by what is called kthe circumcision, which is made in the flesh by hands— 12 remember lthat you were at that time separated from Christ, malienated from the commonwealth of Israel and strangers to nthe covenants of promise, ohaving no hope and without God in the world. 13 But now in Christ Jesus you who once were pfar off have been brought near qby the blood of Christ. 14 For rhe himself is our peace, swho has made us both one and has broken down tin his flesh the dividing wall of hostility 15 by abolishing the law of commandments expressed in uordinances, that he might create in himself one vnew man in place of the two, so making peace, 16 and might wreconcile us both to God in one body through the cross, thereby killing the hostility. 17 And he came and xpreached peace to you who were yfar off and peace to those who were znear. 18 For athrough him we both have baccess in cone Spirit to the Father. 19 So then you are no longer dstrangers and aliens,4 but you are efellow citizens with the saints and fmembers of the household of God, 20 gbuilt on the foundation of the hapostles and prophets, iChrist Jesus himself being jthe cornerstone, 21 kin whom the whole structure, being joined together, grows into la holy temple in the Lord. 22 In him myou also are being built together ninto a dwelling place for God by5 the Spirit.