English Standard Version
Formerly, when you did not know God, you were enslaved to those that by nature are not gods.
King James Bible
Howbeit then, when ye knew not God, ye did service unto them which by nature are no gods.
American Standard Version
Howbeit at that time, not knowing God, ye were in bondage to them that by nature are no gods:
But then indeed, not knowing God, you served them, who, by nature, are not gods.
English Revised Version
Howbeit at that time, not knowing God, ye were in bondage to them which by nature are no gods:
Webster's Bible Translation
However then, when ye knew not God, ye did service to them which by nature are no gods.
Weymouth New Testament
But at one time, you Gentiles, having no knowledge of God, were slaves to gods which in reality do not exist.
Galatians 4:8 Parallel
CommentaryVincent's Word Studies
Over against their filial freedom in Christ, Paul sets their lapse into subjection to the elements of the world (Galatians 4:3).
Knew not God
See on 2 Thessalonians 1:8.
Ye did service (ἐδουλεύσατε)
Better, were in bondage or were slaves.
By nature (φύσει)
Treasury of Scripture Knowledge
2 Chronicles 13:9
Have you not driven out the priests of the LORD, the sons of Aaron, and the Levites, and made priests for yourselves like the peoples of other lands? Whoever comes for ordination with a young bull or seven rams becomes a priest of what are not gods.
and have cast their gods into the fire. For they were no gods, but the work of men's hands, wood and stone. Therefore they were destroyed.
Has a nation changed its gods, even though they are no gods? But my people have changed their glory for that which does not profit.
"How can I pardon you? Your children have forsaken me and have sworn by those who are no gods. When I fed them to the full, they committed adultery and trooped to the houses of whores.
Can man make for himself gods? Such are not gods!"
1 Corinthians 1:21
For since, in the wisdom of God, the world did not know God through wisdom, it pleased God through the folly of what we preach to save those who believe.
1 Corinthians 8:4
Therefore, as to the eating of food offered to idols, we know that "an idol has no real existence," and that "there is no God but one."
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ESV Text Edition: 2016. The Holy Bible, English Standard Version® copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.