For ye, who have believed the Gospel, are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus - But no man is a child of God by circumcision, nor by any observance of the Mosaic law.
For ye are all the children of God - All who bear the Christian name - the converts from among the Jews and Gentiles alike; see the note at John 1:12. The idea here is, that they are no longer under tutors and governors; they are no longer subject to the direction and will of the “paedagogus”; they are arrived at age, and are admitted to the privileges of sons; see the note at Galatians 4:1. The language here is derived from the fact, that until the son arrived at age, he was in many respects not different from a servant. He was under laws and restraints; and subject to the will of another. When of age, he entered on the privileges of heirship, and was free to act for himself. Thus, under the Law, people were under restraints, and subject to heavy exactions. Under the gospel, they are free, and admitted to the privileges of the sons of God.
Thus the Galatians were taught the fundamental truths concerning “God the Father” and “our Lord Jesus Christ, who gave Himself for our sins, that He might deliver us from this present evil world, according to the will of God and our Father.” “By the hearing of faith” they received the Spirit of God and became “the children of God by faith in Christ.” Galatians 1:3, 4; 3:2, 26. AA 208.1
Paul's manner of life while among the Galatians was such that he could afterward say, “I beseech you, be as I am.” Galatians 4:12. His lips had been touched with a live coal from off the altar, and he was enabled to rise above bodily infirmities and to present Jesus as the sinner's only hope. Those who heard him knew that he had been with Jesus. Endued with power from on high, he was able to compare spiritual things with spiritual and to tear down the strongholds of Satan. Hearts were broken by his presentation of the love of God, as revealed in the sacrifice of His only-begotten Son, and many were led to inquire, What must I do to be saved? AA 208.2
This method of presenting the gospel characterized the labors of the apostle throughout his ministry among the Gentiles. Always he kept before them the cross of Calvary. “We preach not ourselves,” he declared in the later years of his experience, “but Christ Jesus the Lord; and ourselves your servants for Jesus’ sake. For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.” 2 Corinthians 4:5, 6. AA 208.3Read in context »