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Jehovah’s Witnesses

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Galatians 4:1-31

4  But, I am saying, for so long as the heir is an infant he is no different from a slave though he is master of everything, 2  but is under guardians and stewards until the date that the father sets; 3  in the same way we, when we were infants, were enslaved under the elementary things of the world. 4*  But when the full time had elapsed God sent out his Son, born of a woman, born under the law, 5  to buy off those who were under the law, so that we might receive our adoption as sons. 6**  And because you are sons God sent out his Son’s spirit into our hearts crying “Abba,” Father. 7  So that you are no longer a slave but a son, and if a son, an heir too through God. 8*  But then, not knowing God, you were in slavery to those who in nature are not gods. 9  But now when you do know God, or rather are known by God, how is it you are turning back again to the weak and cheap elementary things, to which you want to be in slavery over again? 10  you watch days and months and dates and years. 11  I am afraid of you, that I may have done my hard work on you for nothing. 12  Become like me, because I myself am becoming like you, brothers, I beg you. You did me no wrong; 13  but you know it was because of a physical infirmity that I preached the gospel to you in the first place; 14  and you were not provoked to scorn or disgust by the temptation to you in my bodily condition, but received me like an angel of God, like Jesus Christ. 15  What has become of your self-congratulation, then? for I am your witness that if it had been possible you would have dug out your own eyes and given them to me. 16  So that I have become your enemy by telling you the truth! 17  They are jealous of you, not in a good sense, but they want to shut you out in order that you may be jealous of them. 18  But it is a good thing to have people’s jealousy in a good cause at all times and not only while I am there with you, 19  my children, with whom I am in birth-pangs again till Christ takes shape in you. 20  But I wish I could be there with you now and change my tone, because I am at my wit’s end about you. 21  Tell me, you that want to be under the law, do you not hear the law? 22  For the text says Abraham had two sons, one by the slave-girl and one by the freewoman, 23*  but the one by the slave-girl had been begotten in the way of flesh and the one by the freewoman through a promise: 24  which things are said allegorically; for these are two covenants, one from Mount Sinai, producing children for slavery, which is Hagar 25***  (and Sinai is a mountain in Arabia); and it corresponds to the present Jerusalem, for that is in slavery with its children. 26  But the Jerusalem above is free, which is our mother; 27  for it says “Jubilate, barren woman who bore no children; break loose and shout, you that felt no birth-pangs; because the deserted mother’s children outnumber those of the husbanded mother.” 28  And you, brothers, like Isaac, are children of a promise; 29  but just as then the one born in the way of flesh persecuted the one born in the way of spirit, 30  so now—but what does the text say? “Turn out the slave-girl and her son, for the slave-girl’s son shall not inherit along with the freewoman’s!” 31  Wherefore, brothers, we are not children of a slave-girl but of the freewoman.

Footnotes

4:4 Lit. when the completion of the time came
4:6 Var. he sent
4:6 Var. his Spirit
4:8 Or the gods who in nature do not exist
4:23 Var. and the freewoman’s through
4:25 Var. for Sinai is
4:25 Var. and “Hagar” is Sinai, a mountain, in Arabia
4:25 Lit. for it is