In his missive to the Galatians, Paul had tried to guarantee them of his right apostolic standing and the truthfulness of the Gospel he preaches. Obviously, he had witnessed to them in times past and they were one of the receivers of his message and fruits in the Lord. But as he travelled from topographic point to topographic point in his missional work, certain work forces of the Judaic Christians order otherwise referred to as the Judaizers perpetually sought to turn his converts off from exerting religion in Jesus Christ foremost as the agencies of justification from God. They undid the full work of redemption already begun in the life of the Galatians by learning that justification and redemption are attained by first making the plants and demands of the jurisprudence after which religion in Jesus Christ can so be exercised. This among other things involves carry throughing the seal of the old compact which is Circumcision and sacredly following the jurisprudence given to Moses on saddle horse Sinai in add-on to being a Christian. Paul ‘s undertaking in this missive was to turn out to the Galatians that we are justified by religion in Christ entirely and non by any plants of the flesh that we seek to make. To accomplish this, he makes usage of the Hagar-Sarah analogy to demo how those who put their religion in Jesus Christ foremost are spiritually kids of the free adult female Sarah and are kids of promise as Isaac Abraham ‘s boy was the promised kid. On the other manus, he besides shows how those who take to the jurisprudence are kids of animal bondage and spiritually of Hagar as Hagar was the bondwoman who gave birth to Ishmael, the kid of the flesh.
The Two Covenants
To hold an apprehension of Paul ‘s instruction on this topic, the history of the jurisprudence in the state of Israel has to be taken into consideration. The jurisprudence, that is the 10 commandments was given to Moses on saddle horse Sinai to function as a government regulation for the national and spiritual life of the people of Israel. In this wise, it was to function two intents. First, to separate God ‘s people from the other states around Israel that worshipped false Gods. Second, should they be unable to maintain it which was by and large the instance, it reflected to them how unrighteous they were as a people and how incapable they were of run intoing up to the demands of a righteous God to populate a life befitting of His image. Therefore, the jurisprudence was to indicate out to the Hebrewss that they were a people bound by the power of wickedness and so could non populate a life delighting to God by their ain power or flesh. They truly were ne’er able to maintain the jurisprudence and needed the grace of God to populate in righteousness. Moses ‘ narrative of the incidents of the aureate calf ( Deut. 9: 7-21 ) , the mutters in the wilderness ( Deut. 9:22 ) , and the rejection by Israel of God ‘s gift of Land ( Deut. 9: 22-24 ) all after He had delivered them from the bondage of Egypt are proofs to the fact that the Israelites ever contended with God ‘s direction and could ne’er truly lift up to the juncture for life within the demands of the compact God entered with their male parent Abraham.[ 1 ]They took pride in mentioning to themselves as kids of Abraham ( Jn. 8: 31-59 ) because of the grade of the compact, Circumcision which they took pleasance in making merely because it distinguished them as God ‘s covenant people from the other states non chosen by God. In the class of clip, the spiritual governments in Israel came to see Circumcision as their ain manner of run intoing up to God ‘s demands for righteous life. In other words, one time you are circumcised, you have done your portion of the deal and addition credence as being righteous even though you do n’t truly populate a true and baronial life. Paul tries to open the religious eyes of the Galatians that it is non those who believe in their plants that are truly kids of Abraham. Rather, it is those who exercise religion in God like Abraham believed God for Isaac even though he and Sarah were past the age of child-bearing. Abraham from whose seed Isaac, the kids of Israel are descended, we are told by the author of Hebrews was declared righteous by God because he believed God ( Heb. 11 ) . He is referred to as the male parent of religion. Paul uses the illustration with his two boies, Ishmael and Isaac to explicate how observations of the jurisprudence differ from belief in Christ ‘s redemptional work, and non merely that but that it is the Christian ‘s belief in Christ ‘s salvaging power that justifies and saves, non works of personal or human attempt. In his fable, he makes mention to the attempt Abraham made, in his ain manner of desiring to assist convey the promise of God upon his life to go through, by holding a kid through Hagar, Sarah ‘s slave miss. Ishmael was the kid born through that human attempt. He subsequently turned out to be a torn in the flesh of Isaac when the promised kid was eventually born. He and his female parent became covetous and covetous of Isaac and they tormented him so much to the extent that Sarah demanded that they should be driven off from the place. In the terminal, Hagar and her boy Ishmael were chased out ( Gen. 16 ) . Paul links these incidents with the spiritual life of Israel ; the giving of the jurisprudence and the practise of it is symbolic of plants work forces do to accomplish God ‘s ultimate intent merely as Abraham decided to take to the class that seemed right to him by holding a kid through Hagar. In the same manner this attempt led to no solution of the approvals of the compact coming to go through through Abraham so besides it is with those who seek consolation in the plants of the jurisprudence. They ne’er find religious fulfillment in their worship. By swearing in their ain self-effort, they strip themselves of a relationship with God through Christ and the approvals and promises that go with it. And now, the Judaizers who are treading on the word of religion with their instruction of plants and the jurisprudence are seen in the visible radiation of Ishmael who persecuted Isaac representative of Christians who accept Jesus as Lord and Jesus ( Gal. 4:29 ) . For Paul, Hagar and Ishmael prefigure the old compact which is the faith of jurisprudence and plants while Sarah and Isaac prefigure the new compact, symbolized by freedom in Christ.
The Allegory of Hagar
By Paul ‘s account, the life of Hagar spiritually represents the bondage and eventual expletive the jurisprudence brings upon all who live by it. Hagar as we already know was the bond-maid of Sarah whom she gave to Abraham to assist her bear kids for him ( Gen. 16 ) . In Galatians 4: 22-23, Paul makes mention to the Genesis history. Historical events show that in conformity with the values of the Canaanite civilization Abraham and his household found themselves in, Sarah presented her slave miss Hagar to him to hold a kid for him on her ain behalf. Hagar was to function as a alternate female parent.[ 2 ]They thought this is likely a manner to assist convey God ‘s promise to go through in their life. Ishmael was the kid born out of the human attempt. Sarah and Abraham made to happen solution to the job of their bodily unfruitfulness. He is the kid of the flesh ( Gal. 4:23 ) . The fortunes and events that bring him into the scene are reminiscent of the stairss and actions spiritual adult male takes to achieve redemption by his ain strength. By the clip of Jesus, this impression had degenerated into a hedonic set of traditions of work forces put forth as weight on people by the Pharisees and Sadducees. Even though they knew they were being hypocritical about spiritual patterns and could n’t truly maintain the jurisprudence, they referred to themselves as being righteous and better than others. This was the lone manner of re-assuring themself that their plants and continuing the traditions of their male parents justified them in God ‘s sight. Hagar and Ishmael stand for the old compact of the jurisprudence which prescribed plants but neither justified nor set the worshipper free from wickedness or its effects. It was this kind of faith that the Judaic Christians who opposed Paul and his message before the Galatians were seeking to intrench into the life of the people.
Sarah and Isaac
Matthew, the revenue enhancement aggregator traced the line of descent of Jesus Christ straight to Isaac ( Matt. 1:2 ) . He writes this to the Jews to demo them that the christ is from Abraham ‘s line of descent, through the subdivision Isaac. Isaac was the kid God promised Abraham would be his inheritor. Paul re-affirms this in his missive ( Gal. 4:23 ) . The connexion of Sarah symbolized in Paul ‘s fable is that of a free adult female giving birth to the promised kid which corresponds with Christianity doing adherents who are at autonomy from the demands of the jurisprudence to make good plants in God. It is the same manner Isaac became the rightful inheritor to the family of Abraham and the one to lawfully put claim to all that belong to Abraham that Christians who put and exercising religion in Jesus Christ in position of depending on the plants of the jurisprudence for their redemption are declared merely and righteous before God. Paul refers to Sarah as stand foring the new compact. That is Christianity, and Isaac her kid of promise as representative of Christians who believe in the life, decease and Resurrection of Jesus ( Gal. 4:28 ) . He goes farther to beef up the instance for the significance of this symbolism by indicating out that the action of the Judaizers in seeking to overreach his Gospel of religion in Christ with their accent on the jurisprudence and Circumcision is symbolic of the persecution of Isaac by Ishmael ( v. 29 ) . He eventually proved that the jurisprudence was of no consequence every bit far as issues refering to redemption are concerned with the manifestation of religion in Christ merely as Hagar and Ishmael were chased out from Abraham ‘s heritage ( v. 30 ) . With this poetry, Paul non merely affirms that the plants of the jurisprudence does non warrant but besides exposes those who take to it to God ‘s opinion to come. The expletive of everlasting damnation.
Paul was seeking to open the eyes of the Galatians to the religious deductions of the actions they take to either believe on the Lord Jesus and be saved or take to listen to the advocate of the Judaizers and make Circumcision and other plants of the jurisprudence in add-on to being trusters in Christ to have redemption. Clearly, from the weight of the Hagiographas, it is clear that Paul is pressing them to keep unto their religion in Christ. He sought to counter the impression the Judaizers were distributing that Christians needed to go Jews through Circumcision and the pattern of the jurisprudence to hold faith in Christ if they were to hold the gift of redemption. Paul puts all of that to rest and warn them with the result of the Hagar and Sarah episode and how it has played out with the plants of the jurisprudence and salvation through the blood of Christ. Christians are therefore the kids of the free adult female, non the bond adult female as Jesus who is descent from Abraham through Sarah and Isaac has died and shed his blood on the cross for all who believe on him to be saved from the bondage of wickedness, the expletive of the jurisprudence and at hand opinion ( V. 31 ) . Paul was in consequence stating that the jurisprudence which no adult male can to the full maintain unmaskings us to God ‘s expletive but the decease of Jesus has delivered us from it. Heathens are now free to partake of God ‘s approvals.[ 3 ]The merely shall populate by religion ( Gal. 3:11b )