3:23 Now before faith 1 came we were held in custody under the law, being kept as prisoners 2 until the coming faith would be revealed. 3:24 Thus the law had become our guardian 3 until Christ, so that we could be declared righteous 4 by faith. 3:25 But now that faith has come, we are no longer under a guardian. 5 3:26 For in Christ Jesus you are all sons of God through faith. 6 3:27 For all of you who 7 were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. 3:28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave 8 nor free, there is neither male nor female 9 – for all of you are one in Christ Jesus. 3:29 And if you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s descendants, 10 heirs according to the promise.
4:1 Now I mean that the heir, as long as he is a minor, 11 is no different from a slave, though he is the owner 12 of everything. 4:2 But he is under guardians 13 and managers until the date set by his 14 father. 4:3 So also we, when we were minors, 15 were enslaved under the basic forces 16 of the world. 4:4 But when the appropriate time 17 had come, God sent out his Son, born of a woman, born under the law, 4:5 to redeem those who were under the law, so that we may be adopted as sons with full rights. 18 4:6 And because you are sons, God sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, who calls 19 “Abba! 20 Father!” 4:7 So you are no longer a slave but a son, and if you are 21 a son, then you are also an heir through God. 22
1 tn Or “the faithfulness [of Christ] came.”
2 tc Instead of the present participle συγκλειόμενοι (sunkleiomenoi; found in Ì46 א A B D* F G P Ψ 33 1739 al), C D1 0176 0278 Ï have the perfect συγκεκλεισμένοι (sunkekleismenoi). The syntactical implication of the perfect is that the cause or the means of being held in custody was confinement (“we were held in custody [by/because of] being confined”). The present participle of course allows for such options, but also allows for contemporaneous time (“while being confined”) and result (“with the result that we were confined”). Externally, the perfect participle has little to commend it, being restricted for the most part to later and Byzantine witnesses.
tn Grk “being confined.”
3 tn Or “disciplinarian,” “custodian,” or “guide.” According to BDAG 748 s.v. παιδαγωγός, “the man, usu. a slave…whose duty it was to conduct a boy or youth…to and from school and to superintend his conduct gener.; he was not a ‘teacher’ (despite the present mng. of the derivative ‘pedagogue’…When the young man became of age, the π. was no longer needed.” L&N 36.5 gives “guardian, leader, guide” here.
4 tn Or “be justified.”
5 tn See the note on the word “guardian” in v. 24. The punctuation of vv. 25, 26, and 27 is difficult to represent because of the causal connections between each verse. English style would normally require a comma either at the end of v. 25 or v. 26, but in so doing the translation would then link v. 26 almost exclusively with either v. 25 or v. 27; this would be problematic as scholars debate which two verses are to be linked. Because of this, the translation instead places a period at the end of each verse. This preserves some of the ambiguity inherent in the Greek and does not exclude any particular causal connection.
6 tn Or “For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus.”
7 tn Grk “For as many of you as.”
9 tn Grk “male and female.”
11 tn Grk “a small child.” The Greek term νήπιος (nhpios) refers to a young child, no longer a helpless infant but probably not more than three or four years old (L&N 9.43). The point in context, though, is that this child is too young to take any responsibility for the management of his assets.
12 tn Grk “master” or “lord” (κύριος, kurios).
13 tn The Greek term translated “guardians” here is ἐπίτροπος (epitropo"), whose semantic domain overlaps with that of παιδαγωγός (paidagwgo") according to L&N 36.5.
14 tn Grk “the,” but the Greek article is used here as a possessive pronoun (ExSyn 215).
16 tn Or “basic principles,” “elemental things,” or “elemental spirits.” Some interpreters take this as a reference to supernatural powers who controlled nature and/or human fate.
17 tn Grk “the fullness of time” (an idiom for the totality of a period of time, with the implication of proper completion; see L&N 67.69).
18 tn The Greek term υἱοθεσία (Juioqesia) was originally a legal technical term for adoption as a son with full rights of inheritance. BDAG 1024 s.v. notes, “a legal t.t. of ‘adoption’ of children, in our lit., i.e. in Paul, only in a transferred sense of a transcendent filial relationship between God and humans (with the legal aspect, not gender specificity, as major semantic component).” Although some modern translations remove the filial sense completely and render the term merely “adoption” (cf. NAB), the retention of this component of meaning was accomplished in the present translation by the phrase “as sons.”
19 tn Grk “calling.” The participle is neuter indicating that the Spirit is the one who calls.
20 tn The term “Abba” is the Greek transliteration of the Aramaic אַבָּא (’abba’), literally meaning “my father” but taken over simply as “father,” used in prayer and in the family circle, and later taken over by the early Greek-speaking Christians (BDAG 1 s.v. ἀββα).
21 tn Grk “and if a son, then also an heir.” The words “you are” have been supplied twice to clarify the statement.
22 tc The unusual expression διὰ θεοῦ (dia qeou, “through God”) certainly prompted scribes to alter it to more customary or theologically acceptable ones such as διὰ θεόν (dia qeon, “because of God”; F G 1881 pc), διὰ Χριστοῦ (dia Cristou, “through Christ”; 81 630 pc sa), διὰ ᾿Ιησοῦ Χριστοῦ (dia Ihsou Cristou, “through Jesus Christ”; 1739c), θεοῦ διὰ Χριστοῦ (“[an heir] of God through Christ”; א2 C3 D [P] 0278 [6 326 1505] Ï ar sy), or κληρονόμος μὲν θεοῦ, συγκληρονόμος δὲ Χριστοῦ (klhronomo" men qeou, sugklhronomo" de Cristou, “an heir of God, and fellow-heir with Christ”; Ψ pc [cf. Rom 8:17]). Although it is unusual for Paul to speak of God as an intermediate agent, it is not unprecedented (cf. Gal 1:1; 1 Cor 1:9). Nevertheless, Gal 4:7 is the most direct statement to this effect. Further testimony on behalf of διὰ θεοῦ is to be found in external evidence: The witnesses with this phrase are among the most important in the NT (Ì46 א* A B C* 33 1739*vid lat bo Cl).