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Galatians 4 MSG/NIV - Online Parallel Bible

 
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1 Let me show you the implications of this. As long as the heir is a minor, he has no advantage over the slave. Though legally he owns the entire inheritance, 1 What I am saying is that as long as the heir is a child, he is no different from a slave, although he owns the whole estate.
2 he is subject to tutors and administrators until whatever date the father has set for emancipation. 2 He is subject to guardians and trustees until the time set by his father.
3 That is the way it is with us: When we were minors, we were just like slaves ordered around by simple instructions (the tutors and administrators of this world), with no say in the conduct of our own lives. 3 So also, when we were children, we were in slavery under the basic principles of the world.
4 But when the time arrived that was set by God the Father, God sent his Son, born among us of a woman, born under the conditions of the law so that he might redeem those of us who have been kidnapped by the law. 4 But when the time had fully come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under law,
5 Thus we have been set free to experience our rightful heritage. 5 to redeem those under law, that we might receive the full rights of sons.
6 You can tell for sure that you are now fully adopted as his own children because God sent the Spirit of his Son into our lives crying out, "Papa! Father!" 6 Because you are sons, God sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, the Spirit who calls out, ""Abba", Father."
7 Doesn't that privilege of intimate conversation with God make it plain that you are not a slave, but a child? And if you are a child, you're also an heir, with complete access to the inheritance. 7 So you are no longer a slave, but a son; and since you are a son, God has made you also an heir.
8 Earlier, before you knew God personally, you were enslaved to so-called gods that had nothing of the divine about them. 8 Formerly, when you did not know God, you were slaves to those who by nature are not gods.
9 But now that you know the real God - or rather since God knows you - how can you possibly subject yourselves again to those paper tigers? 9 But now that you know God--or rather are known by God--how is it that you are turning back to those weak and miserable principles? Do you wish to be enslaved by them all over again?
10 For that is exactly what you do when you are intimidated into scrupulously observing all the traditions, taboos, and superstitions associated with special days and seasons and years. 10 You are observing special days and months and seasons and years!
11 I am afraid that all my hard work among you has gone up in a puff of smoke! 11 I fear for you, that somehow I have wasted my efforts on you.
12 My dear friends, what I would really like you to do is try to put yourselves in my shoes to the same extent that I, when I was with you, put myself in yours. You were very sensitive and kind then. You did not come down on me personally. 12 I plead with you, brothers, become like me, for I became like you. You have done me no wrong.
13 You were well aware that the reason I ended up preaching to you was that I was physically broken, and so, prevented from continuing my journey, I was forced to stop with you. That is how I came to preach to you. 13 As you know, it was because of an illness that I first preached the gospel to you.
14 And don't you remember that even though taking in a sick guest was most troublesome for you, you chose to treat me as well as you would have treated an angel of God - as well as you would have treated Jesus himself if he had visited you? 14 Even though my illness was a trial to you, you did not treat me with contempt or scorn. Instead, you welcomed me as if I were an angel of God, as if I were Christ Jesus himself.
15 What has happened to the satisfaction you felt at that time? There were some of you then who, if possible, would have given your very eyes to me - that is how deeply you cared! 15 What has happened to all your joy? I can testify that, if you could have done so, you would have torn out your eyes and given them to me.
16 And now have I suddenly become your enemy simply by telling you the truth? I can't believe it. 16 Have I now become your enemy by telling you the truth?
17 Those heretical teachers go to great lengths to flatter you, but their motives are rotten. They want to shut you out of the free world of God's grace so that you will always depend on them for approval and direction, making them feel important. 17 Those people are zealous to win you over, but for no good. What they want is to alienate you [from us], so that you may be zealous for them.
18 It is a good thing to be ardent in doing good, but not just when I am in your presence. Can't you continue the same concern for both my person and my message when I am away from you that you had when I was with you? 18 It is fine to be zealous, provided the purpose is good, and to be so always and not just when I am with you.
19 Do you know how I feel right now, and will feel until Christ's life becomes visible in your lives? Like a mother in the pain of childbirth. 19 My dear children, for whom I am again in the pains of childbirth until Christ is formed in you,
20 Oh, I keep wishing that I was with you. Then I wouldn't be reduced to this blunt, letter-writing language out of sheer frustration. 20 how I wish I could be with you now and change my tone, because I am perplexed about you!
21 Tell me now, you who have become so enamored with the law: Have you paid close attention to that law? 21 Tell me, you who want to be under the law, are you not aware of what the law says?
22 Abraham, remember, had two sons: one by the slave woman and one by the free woman. 22 For it is written that Abraham had two sons, one by the slave woman and the other by the free woman.
23 The son of the slave woman was born by human connivance; the son of the free woman was born by God's promise. 23 His son by the slave woman was born in the ordinary way; but his son by the free woman was born as the result of a promise.
24 This illustrates the very thing we are dealing with now. The two births represent two ways of being in relationship with God. One is from Mount Sinai in Arabia. 24 These things may be taken figuratively, for the women represent two covenants. One covenant is from Mount Sinai and bears children who are to be slaves: This is Hagar.
25 It corresponds with what is now going on in Jerusalem - a slave life, producing slaves as offspring. This is the way of Hagar. 25 Now Hagar stands for Mount Sinai in Arabia and corresponds to the present city of Jerusalem, because she is in slavery with her children.
26 In contrast to that, there is an invisible Jerusalem, a free Jerusalem, and she is our mother - this is the way of Sarah. 26 But the Jerusalem that is above is free, and she is our mother.
27 Remember what Isaiah wrote: Rejoice, barren woman who bears no children, shout and cry out, woman who has no birth pangs, Because the children of the barren woman now surpass the children of the chosen woman. 27 For it is written: "Be glad, O barren woman, who bears no children; break forth and cry aloud, you who have no labor pains; because more are the children of the desolate woman than of her who has a husband."
28 Isn't it clear, friends, that you, like Isaac, are children of promise? 28 Now you, brothers, like Isaac, are children of promise.
29 In the days of Hagar and Sarah, the child who came from faithless connivance (Ishmael) harassed the child who came - empowered by the Spirit - from the faithful promise (Isaac). Isn't it clear that the harassment you are now experiencing from the Jerusalem heretics follows that old pattern? 29 At that time the son born in the ordinary way persecuted the son born by the power of the Spirit. It is the same now.
30 There is a Scripture that tells us what to do: "Expel the slave mother with her son, for the slave son will not inherit with the free son." 30 But what does the Scripture say? "Get rid of the slave woman and her son, for the slave woman's son will never share in the inheritance with the free woman's son."
31 Isn't that conclusive? We are not children of the slave woman, but of the free woman. 31 Therefore, brothers, we are not children of the slave woman, but of the free woman.