Law gave us direction and made decisions for us Do not touch Do not taste Do not handle We don’t have a say in the decision and it may not be our choice! Like raising children
When the fullness of time had come God sent forth His Son Born of a woman – law of sin & death Born under the law – curse of the law To redeem those under the law (under its curse) So we can receive adoption as sons Christ helped us graduate beyond the law (5-6) We have grown up and matured so we can make a choice to love God’s way of life and choose it for ourselves. He adopts us as His children by faith.
We are adopted into God’s Family God has sent the spirit of His son into your hearts – “Abba, Father” (6) [from Jesus in the garden (Mk 14:36; Rom 8:15)] No longer slaves to law, but sons (7) Heirs of the promise through Christ Paul sees both Jews and Gentiles adopted into the Family of God, through Jesus Christ. None of us are heirs by birth.
Turning back to slavery (8-11) You did not know God & served those which by nature are not gods Now – after you have know God – or rather are known of God (like Abraham in Gen 18:19) –God’s election (Rom 9) Return to the weak & beggarly elements (rituals of the law or paganism – both are the same!) You desire to be in bondage (human nature likes it!) You observe days and months and seasons and years – the rituals (v.10) – a religion based on the calendar! Paul’s afraid he may have labored for them in vain (11) Urges them to become as Paul is: under the grace of God (12)
You first received me as an angel Paul’s illness (“thorn in the flesh”) caused him to preach in Galatia (might have been malaria) You didn’t “despise or reject” me (Isa 53) –Paul revealed the sufferings of Christ to them Received Paul as an angel, as Jesus himself God blessed them at that time – when they would have done anything for Paul (15) Now that Paul has pointed out they have changed, some claimed he was the enemy (16)
False motives of the Judaisers 17 They (Judaisers) zealously court you, but for no good (not for your good); yes, they want to exclude you (from Paul & his gospel), that you may be zealous for them (in rituals of the law). 18 But it is good to be zealous in a good thing always, and not only when I am present with you.
My little children (19) Paul was going through labor pains trying to have them reborn as children of God by grace Paul would like to be with them and change his tone, but he has doubts about them (20)
The Allegory of Hagar & Sarah Hagar & IshmaelSarah & Isaac The two covenants
Hagar the Egyptian Sarai’s maid – belonged to Sarai probably got her while in Egypt (Gen 12) Probably younger than Sarai Name means “flight” and twice she runs Conceives by Abram – God did it! –Now everyone knows Sarai is the problem! Hagar despised Sarai before a child was even born! [pride & envy collide – a bit like Rachel & Leah] Hagar’s poor response cost her in the end For three things the earth is perturbed, yes, for four it cannot bear up: For a servant when he reigns, a fool when he is filled with food, A hateful woman when she is married, and a maidservant who succeeds her mistress. Prov 30:21-23
Not all of Abraham’s offspring are children of Abraham by Faith Romans 9:6-8 6 But it is not that the word of God has taken no effect. For they are not all Israel who are of Israel, 7 nor are they all children because they are the seed of Abraham; but, "In Isaac your seed shall be called." 8 That is, those who are the children of the flesh, these are not the children of God; but the children of the promise are counted as the seed.
One man, two women God’s Election In Isaac your seed shall be called (Gen 21:12; Rom 9:7)
One man, one woman God’s Election Jacob I have loved, but Esau I have hated (Mal 1:2; Rom 9:11)
The Allegory of Hagar & Sarah Hagar – slave Ishmael – of the flesh Sarah – free Isaac – thru promise The two covenants From Mt Sinai Children are slaves Jerusalem which now is Driven by fear From Mt Zion (above) Children are free Jerusalem to come “the mother of us all” Energized by love
God’s Election – not of works Romans 9:11, 15-16 11(for the children not yet being born, nor having done any good or evil, that the purpose of God according to election might stand, not of works but of Him who calls), 15For He says to Moses, "I will have mercy on whomever I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whomever I will have compassion." 16So then it is not of him who wills, nor of him who runs, but of God who shows mercy. None of us deserve adoption into God’s family. Thank God, appreciate the privilege and live like you really want it!
Gal 4:27 quotes Isa 54:1 For it is written: "Rejoice, O barren (Sarah – Jerusalem above), you who do not bear! Break forth and shout, you who are not in labor (children by adoption)! For the desolate (Sarah) has many more children than she (Hagar) who has a husband."
We are children of Promise (28) Expect persecution now, just like Isaac received from Ishmael (29) Don’t depend on your fleshly genealogies (which family you come from) Faith can save anyone – no excuses! We must walk in the steps of the faith of Abraham (Rom 4:12) Expect chastening (Heb 12:5-11). God is treating you as His children so you can share His holiness.
What does the scripture say? (v.30) Sarah was right to cast out Hagar! (Gen 21:10) God had this included in the Bible so the allegory would be complete Sarah understood that not all the natural descendents of Abraham would inherit the promises God intended to pass through Isaac God’s election!
“So then, brethren, we are not children of the bondwoman but of the free” In Galatians 5 we will look at how our freedom should impact the way we live now!