Galatians 4:4
New International Version
But when the set time had fully come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under the law,

New Living Translation
But when the right time came, God sent his Son, born of a woman, subject to the law.

English Standard Version
But when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law,

Berean Study Bible
But when the time had fully come, God sent His Son, born of a woman, born under the law,

Berean Literal Bible
But when the fullness of the time had come, God sent forth His Son, having been born of a woman, having been born under the Law,

King James Bible
But when the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law,

New King James Version
But when the fullness of the time had come, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the law,

New American Standard Bible
But when the fullness of the time came, God sent His Son, born of a woman, born under the Law,

NASB 1995
But when the fullness of the time came, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the Law,

NASB 1977
But when the fulness of the time came, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the Law,

Amplified Bible
But when [in God’s plan] the proper time had fully come, God sent His Son, born of a woman, born under the [regulations of the] Law,

Christian Standard Bible
When the time came to completion, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under the law,

Holman Christian Standard Bible
When the time came to completion, God sent His Son, born of a woman, born under the law,

American Standard Version
but when the fulness of the time came, God sent forth his Son, born of a woman, born under the law,

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
But when the end of time arrived, God sent his Son and he was from a woman and was under The Written Law,

Contemporary English Version
But when the time was right, God sent his Son, and a woman gave birth to him. His Son obeyed the Law,

Douay-Rheims Bible
But when the fulness of the time was come, God sent his Son, made of a woman, made under the law:

English Revised Version
but when the fulness of the time came, God sent forth his Son, born of a woman, born under the law,

Good News Translation
But when the right time finally came, God sent his own Son. He came as the son of a human mother and lived under the Jewish Law,

GOD'S WORD® Translation
But when the right time came, God sent his Son [into the world]. A woman gave birth to him, and he came under the control of God's laws.

International Standard Version
But when the appropriate time had come, God sent his Son, born by a woman, born under the Law,

Literal Standard Version
and when the fullness of time came, God sent forth His Son, come of a woman, come under law,

NET Bible
But when the appropriate time had come, God sent out his Son, born of a woman, born under the law,

New Heart English Bible
But when the fullness of the time came, God sent out his Son, born to a woman, born under the law,

Weymouth New Testament
But, when the time was fully come, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born subject to Law,

World English Bible
But when the fullness of the time came, God sent out his Son, born to a woman, born under the law,

Young's Literal Translation
and when the fulness of time did come, God sent forth His Son, come of a woman, come under law,

Additional Translations ...
Sons and Heirs
3So also, when we were children, we were enslaved under the basic principles of the world. 4But when the time had fully come, God sent His Son, born of a woman, born under the law, 5to redeem those under the law, that we might receive our adoption as sons.…

Cross References
Numbers 28:22
Include one male goat as a sin offering to make atonement for you.

Mark 1:15
"The time is fulfilled," He said, "and the kingdom of God is near. Repent and believe in the gospel!"

Luke 2:21
When the eight days until His circumcision had passed, He was named Jesus, the name the angel had given Him before He had been conceived.

Luke 2:27
Led by the Spirit, he went into the temple courts. And when the parents brought in the child Jesus to do for Him what was customary under the Law,

John 1:14
The Word became flesh and made His dwelling among us. We have seen His glory, the glory of the one and only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.

Romans 1:3
regarding His Son, who was a descendant of David according to the flesh,

Romans 5:6
For at just the right time, while we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly.

Romans 8:3
For what the law was powerless to do in that it was weakened by the flesh, God did by sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful man, as an offering for sin. He thus condemned sin in the flesh,

Philippians 2:7
but emptied Himself, taking the form of a servant, being made in human likeness.

1 Timothy 2:6
who gave Himself as a ransom for all--the testimony that was given at just the right time.

Treasury of Scripture

But when the fullness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law,

the fulness.

Genesis 49:10
The sceptre shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh come; and unto him shall the gathering of the people be.

Daniel 9:24-26
Seventy weeks are determined upon thy people and upon thy holy city, to finish the transgression, and to make an end of sins, and to make reconciliation for iniquity, and to bring in everlasting righteousness, and to seal up the vision and prophecy, and to anoint the most Holy…

Malachi 3:1
Behold, I will send my messenger, and he shall prepare the way before me: and the Lord, whom ye seek, shall suddenly come to his temple, even the messenger of the covenant, whom ye delight in: behold, he shall come, saith the LORD of hosts.


Isaiah 48:16
Come ye near unto me, hear ye this; I have not spoken in secret from the beginning; from the time that it was, there am I: and now the Lord GOD, and his Spirit, hath sent me.

Zechariah 2:8-11
For thus saith the LORD of hosts; After the glory hath he sent me unto the nations which spoiled you: for he that toucheth you toucheth the apple of his eye…

John 3:16
For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.


Isaiah 9:6,7
For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counseller, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace…

Micah 5:2
But thou, Bethlehem Ephratah, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall he come forth unto me that is to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting.

Zechariah 6:12
And speak unto him, saying, Thus speaketh the LORD of hosts, saying, Behold the man whose name is The BRANCH; and he shall grow up out of his place, and he shall build the temple of the LORD:

of a.

Genesis 3:15
And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel.

Isaiah 7:14
Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.

Jeremiah 31:22
How long wilt thou go about, O thou backsliding daughter? for the LORD hath created a new thing in the earth, A woman shall compass a man.

made under.

Matthew 3:15
And Jesus answering said unto him, Suffer it to be so now: for thus it becometh us to fulfil all righteousness. Then he suffered him.

Matthew 5:17
Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil.

Luke 2:21-27
And when eight days were accomplished for the circumcising of the child, his name was called JESUS, which was so named of the angel before he was conceived in the womb…

(4) The fulness of the time.--That which was predetermined in the counsels of God as the right and proper time when the whole course of previous preparation both for Jew and Gentile was complete. Here we have a very clear expression of the conception of religion as progressive, divided into periods, and finding its culmination in Christianity. The phrase "fulness of the time" corresponds to "the time appointed of the father" in Galatians 4:2.

Sent forth--i.e., from Himself; from that station which is described in John 1:1 : "The Word was with God." The pre-existence of the Son is distinctly recognised by St. Paul.

Made of a woman.--Perhaps better translated, born of a woman. There is no allusion here to the miraculous conception. The phrase "born of a woman" was of common use. Comp. Matthew 11:11 : "Among them that are born of women there hath not risen a greater than John the Baptist." So here the expression is intended to bring out, not the divinity, but the true humanity of Christ.

Made under the law.--Born under law--i.e., born into a state of things where the whole world was subject to law--born under the legal dispensation, though Himself destined to put an end to that dispensation.

Verse 4. - But when the fulness of the time was come (ὅτε δὲ η΅λθε τὸ πλήρωμα τοῦ χρόνου); but when the completion of the term (Greek, time) came. "The completion of the term" is the notion answering to "the time appointed of the father" in ver. 2. The "time" (χρόνος) here most probably corresponds to the period terminated by the προθεσμία: that is, it is the interval which God ordained should first elapse. So Acts 7:23, Ὡς δὲ ἐπληροῦτο αὐτῷ τεσσαρακονταετὴνς χρόνος, "When he was well-nigh forty years old;" literally," When there was being completed to him a time of forty years" (comp. also Acts 7:30; Acts 24:27; Luke 21:24; Luke 1:57). The substantive (πλήρωμα) "completion" occurs in the same sense in Ephesians 1:10, "Dispensation of the completion of the times." The apostle might apparently have written ὡς δὲ ἐπληρώθη ὁ χρόνος, "But when the term was completed;" but he prefers to express it in this particular form, as colouring the idea with a certain pathos of solemn joy at the arrival of a time so long expected, so fraught with blessing (compare the use of the verb "came" in Galatians 3:25). Why the supreme Disposer, the Father of his people, chose that particular era in the history of the human race for his children's passing into their majority is a deeply interesting subject of inquiry. Much has been said, as for example by Neander and Guerieke in their Histories of the Church, and by Schaff in his History of the Apostolic Church, on the preparedness of the world at large at just that juncture for the reception of the gospel. It may, however, be questioned whether the apostle had this in his mind in the reference here made to the Divine prothesmia. So far as appears, his view was fastened upon the history of the development of God's own people, which up to this time had been under the pedagogic custody of the Mosaic Law. Indeed, in just this context he does not even advert, as he may be supposed to have done in Galatians 3:24, to the effect produced by the Law in preparing God's own people for the gospel, but speaks only of the negative aspect of the legal economy; that is, of those features of "bondage," "powerlessness," and "poverty" which marked it as a state of oppression and helplessness. The training, probably implied in the reference to its "rudiments," stands back for the present out of view; the only notion which is actually brought prominently forward being the comparatively degraded condition in which the child-proprietor was for that while detained. God sent forth his Son (ἐξαπέστειλεν ὁ Θεὸς τὸν υἱὸν αὑτοῦ). The terms here used require to be very closely considered: they arc fraught with the very essence of the gospel. The compound verb ἐξαποστέλλω occurs in nine other places of the New Testament, all of them in St. Luke's Gospel and the Acts. In six of these (Luke 1:53; Luke 20:10, 11; Acts 9:30; Acts 17:14; Acts 22:21) the ἐξ is well represented in our English Bible by "away." In the remaining three (Acts 7:12; Acts 11:22; Acts 12:11) - "(Jacob) sent forth our fathers first;" "They sent forth Barnabas as far as to Antioch;" "God hath sent forth his angel") - the preposition represented by "forth" expresses with more or less distinctness the idea that the person sent belonged intimately to the place or the society of the person who sent him. In no one passage is it without its appreciable value. The verb ἀποστέλλω, without this second prepositional adjunct of ἐξ, is used, for example, in John 17:18, both of the Father sending the Son and of Christ sending his apostles" into the world," but without putting forward this indication of previous intimate connection. So the verb πέμπω is used in like manner of God sending his Son in Romans 8:3, and of the mission of the Holy Spirit in John 14:26. It was, no doubt, optional with the writer or speaker whether he would employ a verb denoting this particular shade of meaning present in the ἐξ or not; but we are not, therefore, at liberty to infer that, when he chooses to employ a verb which does denote it, he uses it without a distinct consciousness of its specific force. In the clause before us, therefore, as also in ver. 6, the writer must be assumed to have had in his mind at least the thought of heaven as the sphere of existence from which the Son and the Spirit were sent, as in Acts 12:11 above cited, if not of some yet closer association with the Sender. The reference to a previously subsisting intimacy of being between the Sender and the Sent, which we trace here in the preposition ἐξ of the compound verb, is in Romans 8:3, where the verb employed is πέμψας, indicated in the emphatic reference implied in the pronoun ἑαυτοῦ, "sending his own Son." In endeavouring next to determine the import of the expression," his Son," as here introduced, we are met by the surmise that the apostle may have written it proleptically, or by anticipation; that is, as describing, not what Christ was before he was sent forth, but the glory and acceptableness with the Almighty which marked him as the Messiah after his appearing in the world; for when, for example, in another place the apostle writes," Christ Jesus came into the world to rove sinners," he must be understood as expressing himself proleptically, designating the person who came into the world by the name and office which he bore as among men, and not as he was before he came. A proleptic designation is therefore conceivable. But this interpretation of the apostle's meaning is resisted by the tendency of the context in the kindred passage in Romans 8:3, "God sending his own Son in the likeness of the flesh of sin;" for those added words betoken very strongly that Christ was viewed by the apostle as having been God's Son before he appeared in the flesh. And such is the impression which a reader not preoccupied with other ideas would naturally receive also here. The conviction that this is what the apostle really intended is corroborated by references which he elsewhere makes to Christ's pro-incarnate existence and work; as, for example, in Philippians 2:5, 6; Colossians 1:15, 16; the latter of which passages, by describing "the Son of God's love" as "the Firstborn of every creature, because by him all things were created" (see Alford, and the 'Speaker's Commentary' on the passage), betokens that St. Paul regarded him as having been even then the "Son of God;" and this, too, in the sense of derivation from "the substance of the Father, ... begotten" (as the Nicene Creed recites) "of his Father before all worlds." We may, therefore, reason, ably believe that the Apostle Paul, whose views alone are now under consideration, recognized these two senses of the term, namely, the theological and the Christologieal, as inseparably blending into one when thus applied to the Lord Jesus; for we must allow that it appears alien to his manner of sentiment and of representation to suppose that he ever uses it in the purely theological sense only. In the view of the apostle Christ was the "Son of God," not only when appointed to be the Messiah, but also before he was "made to be of a woman." Indeed, it should seem that this conception of his person is just that which forms the basis for the subsequent statement that the object of his coming into the world was to procure the adoption of sons for us. Made of a woman (γενόμενον ἐκ γυναικός); made to be of a woman. This, indeed, was probably the sense intended by King James's translators, when they followed Wicklife and the Geneva Bible in rendering "made of a woman;" whilst Tyndale and Cranmer, followed by the Revisers of 1881, give "born of a woman." Just the same divergency of renderings appears in the same English translations in Romans 1:3, "made of the seed of David (γενομένον ἐκ σπέρματος Δαβίδ)," except that Tyndale has "begotten" instead of "born." The difference in sense is appreciable and important: "made" implies a previous state of existence, which "born" does not. So far as the present writer can find, wherever in the New Testament the Authorized Version has "born," we have in the Greek either τεχθῆναι or γεννηθῆναι: γενέσθαι never having this sense at all. As in Galatians 3:13 (γενόμενος ὑπὲρ ἡμῶν κατάρα), "Being made a curse for us," and in John 1:14 (ὁ Λόγος σάρξ ἐγένετο), "The Word was made flesh;" so here God's Son is described as "made to be of a woman," the phrase, "of a woman," being nearly identical in import with the word "flesh" in St. John, distinctly implying the fact of the Incarnation. The preposition "of" (ἐκ) denotes derivation of being, as when it is found after the verb "to be" in John 8:47, "He that is of God;" "Ye are not of God," pointing back to the claim which (ver. 41) the Jews had made that they had God for their Father. The construction of γίγνομαι, to come to be, with a preposition occurs frequently, as in Luke 22:44; Acts 22:17; Romans 16:7; 2 Thessalonians 2:7. There can be no doubt that γενόμενον must be taken in the next clause with the same meaning as here. Made under the Law (γενόμενον ὑπὸ νόμον); that is, made to be under the Law. The "Law" here, as in the clause immediately after "those under the Law," indicates, not Law in general, but that particular law of tutorship and of domination over one as yet in the depressed condition of a minor, which the apostle has just before spoken of; that is, a law of ceremonies and of external cult. The article is wanting in the Greek, as in Romans 2:12, 23; Galatians 2:21; Galatians 3:11, etc. We cannot be unconscious of a tone of pathos in the apostle's language, thus declaring that he who had before been no less august a being than God's Son, should in conformity with his Father's will have stooped to derive being "from a woman," as well as to become subject to such a Law of servitude as that of Moses was. In the second chapter of the Philip-plans we have a similar account of the Incarnation, in which, with similar pathos, the apostle remarks that he took upon him the form of a "bond-servant" (δοῦλος), being made to be in the like condition to that of men (ἐν ὁμοιώματι ἀνθρώπων γένομενος); but in that passage the line of thought does not lead to a definite reference of his being made subject to the ceremonial Law. The apostle probably thinks of Christ as being made subject to the Law by his being circumcised; a child of Israelite parents, so long as he was uncircumcised, was repudiated by the Law as one not in the covenant. With reference to the preceding clause," made of a woman," we are naturally led to inquire why this particular was specified. It does not appear to be essential to his argument, as the next clause certainly is. Probably it was added as marking one of the successive steps down which the Son of God descended to that subjection ("servitude," ver. 3) to the ceremonial Law which the apostle is most particularly concerned with. As in Philippians 2. he is exhibited, first as emptying himself; next, as taking upon him the form of a bond-servant by being made man; and then at length as brought to "the death of the cross;" so here, more briefly, he appears as "sent forth" from the bosom of the Father; next, as made "the son of a woman;" then as brought under the Law, to the end that (of course by the Crucifixion) he might buy off from under the Law those who were subject thereto. If the apostle intended anything more definite by introducing this first clause, it may have been to glance at that fellowship with the whole human race, with all "born of women" (γεννητοῖς γυναικῶν, Matthew 11:11), into which God's own Son came by becoming himself "of a woman" (comp. 1 Timothy 2:5). To refer to yet another point, we can fearlessly affirm that this sentence of the apostle is perfectly consistent with the belief in the writer's mind that our Lord was born of a virgin-mother, for a specified reference to this fact did not lie in his way just at present, and therefore is not to be desiderated. The only point for consideration in this respect is whether the expression employed does at all allude to it. Many have thought that it does. But when we consider that "one born of woman." γεννητὸς γυναικός, in Hebrew yelud isshah, was a set phrase to denote a human creature (cf. Matthew 11:11; Job 14:1; Job 15:14; Job 25:4; Job 11:12 [Septuagint]), with no particular reference to the woman except as the medium of our being introduced into the world, it has been with much probability judged by most recent critics that the clause shows no colouring of such allusion. Nevertheless, we distinctly recognize in it the sentiment expressed in the familiar verse of the ancient hymn: "Tu, ad liberandum suscepturus hominem, non horruisti virginis uterum;" else, why did not the apostle write γενόμενον ἐν σαρκί ορ γενόμενον ἄνθρωπον?

Parallel Commentaries ...

δὲ (de)
Strong's 1161: A primary particle; but, and, etc.

Ὅτε (Hote)
Strong's 3753: When, at which time. From hos and te; at which too, i.e. When.

τὸ (to)
Article - Nominative Neuter Singular
Strong's 3588: The, the definite article. Including the feminine he, and the neuter to in all their inflections; the definite article; the.

χρόνου (chronou)
Noun - Genitive Masculine Singular
Strong's 5550: A space of time or interval; by extension, an individual opportunity; by implication, delay.

{had} fully
πλήρωμα (plērōma)
Noun - Nominative Neuter Singular
Strong's 4138: From pleroo; repletion or completion, i.e. what fills, or what is filled.

ἦλθεν (ēlthen)
Verb - Aorist Indicative Active - 3rd Person Singular
Strong's 2064: To come, go.

Θεὸς (Theos)
Noun - Nominative Masculine Singular
Strong's 2316: A deity, especially the supreme Divinity; figuratively, a magistrate; by Hebraism, very.

ἐξαπέστειλεν (exapesteilen)
Verb - Aorist Indicative Active - 3rd Person Singular
Strong's 1821: From ek and apostello; to send away forth, i.e. to despatch, or to dismiss.

αὐτοῦ (autou)
Personal / Possessive Pronoun - Genitive Masculine 3rd Person Singular
Strong's 846: He, she, it, they, them, same. From the particle au; the reflexive pronoun self, used of the third person, and of the other persons.

Υἱὸν (Huion)
Noun - Accusative Masculine Singular
Strong's 5207: A son, descendent. Apparently a primary word; a 'son', used very widely of immediate, remote or figuratively, kinship.

γενόμενον (genomenon)
Verb - Aorist Participle Middle - Accusative Masculine Singular
Strong's 1096: A prolongation and middle voice form of a primary verb; to cause to be, i.e. to become, used with great latitude.

ἐκ (ek)
Strong's 1537: From out, out from among, from, suggesting from the interior outwards. A primary preposition denoting origin, from, out.

a woman,
γυναικός (gynaikos)
Noun - Genitive Feminine Singular
Strong's 1135: A woman, wife, my lady. Probably from the base of ginomai; a woman; specially, a wife.

γενόμενον (genomenon)
Verb - Aorist Participle Middle - Accusative Masculine Singular
Strong's 1096: A prolongation and middle voice form of a primary verb; to cause to be, i.e. to become, used with great latitude.

ὑπὸ (hypo)
Strong's 5259: A primary preposition; under, i.e. of place, or with verbs; of place (underneath) or where (below) or time (when).

[the] Law,
νόμον (nomon)
Noun - Accusative Masculine Singular
Strong's 3551: From a primary nemo; law, genitive case, specially, (including the volume); also of the Gospel), or figuratively.

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NT Letters: Galatians 4:4 But when the fullness of the time (Gal. Ga)
Galatians 4:3
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