4:1 I mean that the heir, as long as he is a child, is no better than a slave, though he is the owner of all the estate;
4:1 My point is this: heirs, as long as they are minors, are no better than slaves, though they are the owners of all the property;

4:2 but he is under guardians and trustees until the date set by the father.
4:2 but they remain under guardians and trustees until the date set by the father.

4:3 So with us; when we were children, we were slaves to the elemental spirits of the universe.
4:3 So with us; while we were minors, we were enslaved to the elemental spirits of the world.

4:4 But when the time had fully come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law,
4:4 But when the fullness of time had come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under the law,

4:5 to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons.
4:5 in order to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as children.

4:6 And because you are sons, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying, "Abba! Father!"
4:6 And because you are children, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying, "Abba! Father!"

4:7 So through God you are no longer a slave but a son, and if a son then an heir.
4:7 So you are no longer a slave but a child, and if a child then also an heir, through God.

4:8 Formerly, when you did not know God, you were in bondage to beings that by nature are no gods;
4:8 Formerly, when you did not know God, you were enslaved to beings that by nature are not gods.

4:9 but now that you have come to know God, or rather to be known by God, how can you turn back again to the weak and beggarly elemental spirits, whose slaves you want to be once more?
4:9 Now, however, that you have come to know God, or rather to be known by God, how can you turn back again to the weak and beggarly elemental spirits? How can you want to be enslaved to them again?

4:10 You observe days, and months, and seasons, and years!
4:10 You are observing special days, and months, and seasons, and years.

4:11 I am afraid I have labored over you in vain.
4:11 I am afraid that my work for you may have been wasted.

4:12 Brethren, I beseech you, become as I am, for I also have become as you are. You did me no wrong;
4:12 Friends, I beg you, become as I am, for I also have become as you are. You have done me no wrong.

4:13 you know it was because of a bodily ailment that I preached the gospel to you at first;
4:13 You know that it was because of a physical infirmity that I first announced the gospel to you;

4:14 and though my condition was a trial to you, you did not scorn or despise me, but received me as an angel of God, as Christ Jesus.
4:14 though my condition put you to the test, you did not scorn or despise me, but welcomed me as an angel of God, as Christ Jesus.

4:15 What has become of the satisfaction you felt? For I bear you witness that, if possible, you would have plucked out your eyes and given them to me.
4:15 What has become of the good will you felt? For I testify that, had it been possible, you would have torn out your eyes and given them to me.

4:16 Have I then become your enemy by telling you the truth?
4:16 Have I now become your enemy by telling you the truth?

4:17 They make much of you, but for no good purpose; they want to shut you out, that you may make much of them.
4:17 They make much of you, but for no good purpose; they want to exclude you, so that you may make much of them.

4:18 For a good purpose it is always good to be made much of, and not only when I am present with you.
4:18 It is good to be made much of for a good purpose at all times, and not only when I am present with you.

4:19 My little children, with whom I am again in travail until Christ be formed in you!
4:19 My little children, for whom I am again in the pain of childbirth until Christ is formed in you,

4:20 I could wish to be present with you now and to change my tone, for I am perplexed about you.
4:20 I wish I were present with you now and could change my tone, for I am perplexed about you.

4:21 Tell me, you who desire to be under law, do you not hear the law?
4:21 Tell me, you who desire to be subject to the law, will you not listen to the law?

4:22 For it is written that Abraham had two sons, one by a slave and one by a free woman.
4:22 For it is written that Abraham had two sons, one by a slave woman and the other by a free woman.

4:23 But the son of the slave was born according to the flesh, the son of the free woman through promise.
4:23 One, the child of the slave, was born according to the flesh; the other, the child of the free woman, was born through the promise.

4:24 Now this is an allegory: these women are two covenants. One is from Mount Sinai, bearing children for slavery; she is Hagar.
4:24 Now this is an allegory: these women are two covenants. One woman, in fact, is Hagar, from Mount Sinai, bearing children for slavery.

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

4:26 But the Jerusalem above is free, and she is our mother.
4:26 But the other woman corresponds to the Jerusalem above; she is free, and she is our mother.

4:27 For it is written, "Rejoice, O barren one who does not bear; break forth and shout, you who are not in travail; for the children of the desolate one are many more than the children of her that is married."
4:27 For it is written, "Rejoice, you childless one, you who bear no children, burst into song and shout, you who endure no birthpangs; for the children of the desolate woman are more numerous than the children of the one who is married."

4:28 Now we, brethren, like Isaac, are children of promise.
4:28 Now you, my friends, are children of the promise, like Isaac.

4:29 But as at that time he who was born according to the flesh persecuted him who was born according to the Spirit, so it is now.
4:29 But just as at that time the child who was born according to the flesh persecuted the child who was born according to the Spirit, so it is now also.

4:30 But what does the scripture say? "Cast out the slave and her son; for the son of the slave shall not inherit with the son of the free woman."
4:30 But what does the scripture say? "Drive out the slave and her child; for the child of the slave will not share the inheritance with the child of the free woman."

4:31 So, brethren, we are not children of the slave but of the free woman.
4:31 So then, friends, we are children, not of the slave but of the free woman.