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English Standard Version

Galatians 3:15–4:7

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The Law and the Promise

15 yTo give a human example, brothers:6 zeven with a man-made covenant, no one annuls it or adds to it once it has been ratified. 16 Now athe promises were made bto Abraham and to his offspring. It does not say, “And to offsprings,” referring to many, but referring to one, c“And to your offspring,” who is Christ. 17 This is what I mean: the law, which came d430 years afterward, does not annul a covenant previously ratified by God, so as eto make the promise void. 18 For if the inheritance comes by the law, it no longer comes by promise; but fGod gave it to Abraham by a promise.

19 Why then the law? gIt was added because of transgressions, huntil the offspring should come to whom the promise had been made, and it was iput in place through angels jby an intermediary. 20 Now kan intermediary implies more than one, but lGod is one.

21 Is the law then contrary to the promises of God? Certainly not! For mif a law had been given that could give life, then righteousness would indeed be by the law. 22 But the Scripture nimprisoned everything under sin, so that othe promise by faith in Jesus Christ might be given pto those who believe.

23 Now before faith came, we were held captive under the law, qimprisoned until the coming faith would be revealed. 24 So then, rthe law was our sguardian until Christ came, tin order that we might be justified by faith. 25 But now that faith has come, we are no longer under a guardian, 26 for in Christ Jesus uyou are all sons of God, through faith. 27 For as many of you as vwere baptized winto Christ have xput on Christ. 28 yThere is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave7 nor free, zthere is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. 29 And aif you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s offspring, bheirs according to promise.

Sons and Heirs

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, but he is under guardians and managers until the date set by his father. In the same way we also, when we were children, cwere enslaved to the elementary principles2 of the world. But dwhen the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son, eborn fof woman, born gunder the law, hto redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive iadoption as sons. And because you are sons, God has sent jthe Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying, “Abba! Father!” So you are no longer a slave, but a son, and if a son, then kan heir through God.

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