Galatians 4:24
Parallel Verses
English Standard Version
Now this may be interpreted allegorically: these women are two covenants. One is from Mount Sinai, bearing children for slavery; she is Hagar.

King James Bible
Which things are an allegory: for these are the two covenants; the one from the mount Sinai, which gendereth to bondage, which is Agar.

American Standard Version
Which things contain an allegory: for these women are two covenants; one from mount Sinai, bearing children unto bondage, which is Hagar.

Douay-Rheims Bible
Which things are said by an allegory. For these are the two testaments. The one from mount Sina, engendering unto bondage; which is Agar:

English Revised Version
Which things contain an allegory: for these women are two covenants; one from mount Sinai, bearing children unto bondage, which is Hagar.

Webster's Bible Translation
Which things are an allegory: for these are the two covenants; the one from the mount Sinai, which gendereth to bondage, which is Agar.

Weymouth New Testament
All this is allegorical; for the women represent two Covenants. One has its origin on Mount Sinai, and bears children destined for slavery.

Galatians 4:24 Parallel
Commentary
Vincent's Word Studies

Are an allegory (ἐστιν ἀλληγορούμενα)

N.T.o. Lit. are allegorised. From ἄλλο another, ἀγορεύειν to speak. Hence, things which are so spoken as to give a different meaning from that which the words express. For parable, allegory, fable, and proverb, see on Matthew 13:3. An allegory is to be distinguished from a type. An O.T. type is a real prefiguration of a N.T. fact, as the Jewish tabernacle explained in Hebrews 9, or the brazen serpent, John 3:14. Comp. Romans 5:14; 1 Corinthians 10:6, 1 Corinthians 10:11. An allegory exhibits figuratively the ideal character of a fact. The type allows no latitude of interpretation. The allegory lends itself to various interpretations. This passage bears traces of Paul's rabbinical training. At the time of Christ, Scripture was overlaid with that enormous mass of rabbinic interpretation which, beginning as a supplement to the written law, at last superseded and threw it into contempt. The plainest sayings of Scripture were resolved into another sense; and it was asserted by one of the Rabbis that he that renders a verse of Scripture as it appears, says what is not true. The celebrated Akiba assumed that the Pentateuch was a continuous enigma, and that a meaning was to be found in every monosyllable, and a mystical sense in every hook and flourish of the letters. The Talmud relates how Akiba was seen by Moses in a vision, drawing from every horn of every letter whole bushels of decisions. The oral laws, subsequently reduced to writing in the Talmud, completely overshadowed and superseded the Scriptures, so that Jesus was literally justified in saying: "Thus have ye make the commandment of God of none effect through your tradition."

Paul had been trained as a Rabbi in the school of Hillel, the founder of the rabbinical system, whose hermeneutic rules were the basis of the Talmud. As Jowett justly says: "Strange as it may at first appear that Paul's mode of interpreting the Old Testament Scriptures should not conform to our laws of logic or language, it would be far stranger if it had not conformed with the natural modes of thought and association in his own day." His familiarity with this style of exposition gave him a real advantage in dealing with Jews.

It is a much-mooted question whether, in this passage, Paul is employing an argument or an illustration. The former would seem to be the case. On its face, it seems improbable that, as Dr. Bruce puts it: "it is poetry rather than logic, meant not so much to convince the reason as to captivate the imagination." Comp. the argument in Galatians 3:16, and see note. It appears plain that Paul believed that his interpretation actually lay hidden in the O.T. narrative, and that he adduced it as having argumentative force. Whether he regarded the correspondence as designed to extend to all the details of his exposition may be questioned; but he appears to have discerned in the O.T. narrative a genuine type, which he expanded into his allegory. For other illustrations of this mode of treatment, see Romans 2:24; Romans 9:33; 1 Corinthians 2:9; 1 Corinthians 9:9, 1 Corinthians 9:10; 1 Corinthians 10:1-4.

For these are

Hagar and Sarah are, allegorically. Signify. Comp. Matthew 13:20, Matthew 13:38; Matthew 26:26, Matthew 26:28; 1 Corinthians 10:4, 1 Corinthians 10:16.

The one

Covenant.

From Mount Sinai (ἀπὸ ὄρους Σινά)

The covenant emanating from Sinai: made on that mountain. The old covenant. See 2 Corinthians 3:14.

Which gendereth to bondage (εἰς δουλείαν γεννῶσα)

That is, the Sinaitic covenant places its children in a condition of bondage; note the personification and the allegorical blending of fact and figure.

Which is Hagar (ἥτις ἐστὶν Ἅραβίᾳ)

The Sinaitic covenant is that which, in Abraham's history, is Hagar: which is allegorically identified with Hagar the bondmaid.

Galatians 4:24 Parallel Commentaries

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

an allegory.

Ezekiel 20:49 Then said I, Ah Lord GOD! they say of me, Does he not speak parables?

Hosea 11:10 They shall walk after the LORD: he shall roar like a lion: when he shall roar, then the children shall tremble from the west.

Matthew 13:35 That it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, saying, I will open my mouth in parables...

1 Corinthians 10:11 Now all these things happened to them for ensamples: and they are written for our admonition, on whom the ends of the world are come.

*Gr:

Hebrews 11:19 Accounting that God was able to raise him up, even from the dead; from where also he received him in a figure.

for.

Galatians 4:25 For this Agar is mount Sinai in Arabia, and answers to Jerusalem which now is, and is in bondage with her children.

Luke 22:19,20 And he took bread, and gave thanks, and broke it, and gave to them, saying, This is my body which is given for you...

1 Corinthians 10:4 And did all drink the same spiritual drink: for they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them: and that Rock was Christ.

the two.

Galatians 3:15-21 Brothers, I speak after the manner of men; Though it be but a man's covenant, yet if it be confirmed, no man cancels, or adds thereto...

Hebrews 7:22 By so much was Jesus made a surety of a better testament.

Hebrews 8:6-13 But now has he obtained a more excellent ministry, by how much also he is the mediator of a better covenant...

Hebrews 9:15-24 And for this cause he is the mediator of the new testament, that by means of death...

Hebrews 10:15-18 Whereof the Holy Ghost also is a witness to us: for after that he had said before...

Hebrews 12:24 And to Jesus the mediator of the new covenant, and to the blood of sprinkling, that speaks better things that that of Abel.

Hebrews 13:20 Now the God of peace, that brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great shepherd of the sheep...

covenants. or, testament. Sinai. Gr. Sina. which.

Galatians 5:1 Stand fast therefore in the liberty with which Christ has made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage.

Romans 8:15 For you have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but you have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba...

Agar.

Genesis 16:3,4,8,15,16 And Sarai Abram's wife took Hagar her maid the Egyptian, after Abram had dwelled ten years in the land of Canaan...

Genesis 21:9-13 And Sarah saw the son of Hagar the Egyptian, which she had born to Abraham, mocking...

Genesis 25:12 Now these are the generations of Ishmael, Abraham's son, whom Hagar the Egyptian, Sarah's handmaid, bore to Abraham:

Hagar.

Cross References
Deuteronomy 33:2
He said, "The LORD came from Sinai and dawned from Seir upon us; he shone forth from Mount Paran; he came from the ten thousands of holy ones, with flaming fire at his right hand.

1 Corinthians 10:11
Now these things happened to them as an example, but they were written down for our instruction, on whom the end of the ages has come.

Galatians 4:3
In the same way we also, when we were children, were enslaved to the elementary principles of the world.

Galatians 4:25
Now Hagar is Mount Sinai in Arabia; she corresponds to the present Jerusalem, for she is in slavery with her children.

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