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Galatians 4:25-31

Context
4:25 Now Hagar represents Mount Sinai in Arabia and corresponds to the present Jerusalem, for she is in slavery with her children. 4:26 But the Jerusalem above is free, 1  and she is our mother. 4:27 For it is written:

Rejoice, O barren woman who does not bear children; 2 

break forth and shout, you who have no birth pains,

because the children of the desolate woman are more numerous

than those of the woman who has a husband.” 3 

4:28 But you, 4  brothers and sisters, 5  are children of the promise like Isaac. 4:29 But just as at that time the one born by natural descent 6  persecuted the one born according to the Spirit, 7  so it is now. 4:30 But what does the scripture say? “Throw out the slave woman and her son, for the son of the slave woman will not share the inheritance with the son 8  of the free woman. 4:31 Therefore, brothers and sisters, 9  we are not children of the slave woman but of the free woman.

1 sn The meaning of the statement the Jerusalem above is free is that the other woman represents the second covenant (cf. v. 24); she corresponds to the Jerusalem above that is free. Paul’s argument is very condensed at this point.

2 tn The direct object “children” is not in the Greek text, but has been supplied for clarity. Direct objects were often omitted in Greek when clear from the context.

3 tn Grk “because more are the children of the barren one than of the one having a husband.”

sn A quotation from Isa 54:1.

4 tc Most mss (א A C D2 Ψ 062 Ï lat sy bo) read “we” here, while “you” is found in Ì46 B D* F G 0261vid 0278 33 1739 al sa. It is more likely that a copyist, noticing the first person pronouns in vv. 26 and 31, changed a second person pronoun here to first person for consistency.

5 tn Grk “brothers.” See note on the phrase “brothers and sisters” in 1:11.

6 tn Grk “according to the flesh”; see the note on the phrase “by natural descent” in 4:23.

7 tn Or “the one born by the Spirit’s [power].”

8 sn A quotation from Gen 21:10. The phrase of the free woman does not occur in Gen 21:10.

9 tn Grk “brothers.” See note on the phrase “brothers and sisters” in 1:11.



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