Children of Slavery or Children of Freedom?

Galatians 4:21-31 (ESV)

Tell me, you who desire to be under the law, do you not listen to the law? For it is written that Abraham had two sons, one by a slave woman and one by a free woman. But the son of the slave was born according to the flesh, while the son of the free woman was born through promise. Now this may be interpreted allegorically: these women are two covenants. One is from Mount Sinai, bearing children for slavery; she is Hagar. Now Hagar is Mount Sinai in Arabia; she corresponds to the present Jerusalem, for she is in slavery with her children. But the Jerusalem above is free, and she is our mother. For it is written, “Rejoice, O barren one who does not bear; break forth and cry aloud, you who are not in labor! For the children of the desolate one will be more than those of the one who has a husband.” Now you, brothers, like Isaac, are children of promise. But just as at that time he who was born according to the flesh persecuted him who was born according to the Spirit, so also it is now. But what does the Scripture say? “Cast out the slave woman and her son, for the son of the slave woman shall not inherit with the son of the free woman.” So, brothers, we are not children of the slave but of the free woman.

We have discussed the difference between the Law and Grace a lot lately. This is because the Church in Galatia was having a hard time understanding that the Law was not what they needed to be about. Here Paul clarifies with an excellent allegory. He compares the two children of Abraham to the two covenants.

It is important to realize that the covenant of Grace, the covenant of the promise, is what was ushered in because of Jesus. We are not under the Law, because Jesus fulfilled the Law. He did what no one else could do. He satisfied God’s Justice, and bought our freedom from the Law of sin.

It is also important to realize that in Romans it states that when the fullness of the Gentiles have been added to the fold, God will again graft in the Jews. I believe this will happen when the Christians are taken up to heaven at the time of the tribulation. The Scriptures talk about 144,000 (12,000 from each from the 12 tribes of Israel) will evangelize the world.

Be comforted my brethren, God will not abandon us, even if I am incorrect and we do have to suffer through a portion of the tribulation. Regardless of what may come, we need to trust God and realize that He is our Savior.

As children of the Promise, we are given a great gift. We have freedom in Christ. Let us use that freedom to love one another, and to love others, showing them the same mercy God has shown us. We should not harbor any ill will or hold on to anger or malice. We have been forgiven, so we MUST forgive.

Let God be in charge of any retribution that is needed. He will repay. And the Scriptures have severe warning for any who would mess with God’s children. Be kind to others. Be considerate. Let God be God.

I know, this is kind of rambling. My thoughts are not coming easily today. Hopefully it makes sense to someone other than me. Regardless though, it is not about me. It is about being the children of God. His heirs. His.

by Virgil Stripes

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