Main point summary
The Covenant of God to Abraham is secured in Christ, while the Law of God through Moses points to our need for Christ. The Covenant of God is justification by grace (promise) through faith. The Law of God is captivity of sin (works) through self-righteousness. The Covenant was given to show that God's grace (promise) precedes our obedience (works), whereas the Law was given to reveal that our sin (works) is overcome by the depth and the riches of God's grace (promise/inheritance) in the Covenant. The Covenant is sonship, the Law is imprisonment. In Christ, all are heirs. In the Law, all are prisoners. Be free in Christ, be children of promise.
y To give a human example, brothers: 1
The Covenant of God works SIMILARLY TO human covenants
z even with a man-made covenant,
WHAT I MEAN IS, DESPITE man's fallibility, man's understanding of covenant is similar to God's understanding
no one annuls it
Covenants aren't amended
or adds to it
NOR are they added to
once it has been ratified.
WHEN the covenant has been set in place
Now a the promises were made b to Abraham
LIKEWISE, a covenant was made to Abraham
and to his offspring.
AND to his offspring
It does not say,
DO NOT misinterpret
“And to offsprings,”
IN OTHER WORDS, it does not say "offsprings"
referring to many,
SO AS TO MEAN, a number of offspring
but referring to one,
RATHER, it is singular
c “And to your offspring,”
IN OTHER WORDS, "offspring"
who is Christ.
MEANING, Christ (or all those in Christ in whom the covenant to Abraham is rooted)
This is what I mean:
MORE SPECIFICALLY, let me interpret:
the law, which came d 430 years afterward, does not annul a covenant
The coming of the law did not write-off the applicability of promise
previously ratified by God,
WHICH God made PRIOR to the law
so as e to make the promise void.
WITH THE RESULT THAT the promise would no longer apply
For if the inheritance comes
BECAUSE IF God is to give us anything
by the law,
AS A RESULT of our obedience
it no longer comes by promise;
THEN it's not a gift, it's something we've earned
but f God gave it to Abraham by a promise.
RATHER, God gave the inheritance to Abraham out of grace (promise), not out of what Abraham had done (law)
Why then the law?
NEVERTHELESS, why did God give us the law?
g It was added because of transgressions,
ANSWER: to point out our sin and wretchedness
h until the offspring should come
UNTIL Christ comes
to whom the promise had been made,
WHAT I MEAN IS the Christ who God spoke of in His promise to Abraham
and it was i put in place through angels j by an intermediary.
AND the law was implemented to mediate the promise of God and the wrath of God over the condemnation of the sins of God's people
Now k an intermediary implies more than one,
PROBELM: Mediation means there are at least two parties that need to be reconciled
but l God is one.
BUT God is one party
Is the law then contrary to the promises of God?
WHAT I MEAN IS, QUESTION: Does not God's provision of the law mean that God is in contradiction to His promises?
For m if a law had been given that could give life,
BECAUSE IF by obedience to the law, you were able to live
then righteousness would indeed be by the law.
THEN your righteousness would be by works
But the Scripture n imprisoned everything under sin,
HOWEVER, the truth is that the law was to show you how sinful you are, and that you cannot be freed from your sin by your own power, rather, you are a prisoner to your sinfulness (and the law traps you)
so that o the promise by faith in Jesus Christ might be given p to those who believe.
IN ORDER THAT you might see that Christ is your only hope for expiation through faith, and that Christ (who is God) vindicates the wrath of God and validates His promise to Abraham!
Now before faith came,
WHAT I MEAN IS, PRIOR to the gift of faith (redemption by promise)
we were held captive under the law,
We were not free under the law
IN OTHER WORDS, the law would trap us
until the coming faith would be revealed.
until we received faith
So then, r the law was our s guardian
THEREFORE, the law kept guard
until Christ came,
UNTIL Christ (the giver of faith) dwelt among us
t in order that we might be justified by faith.
FOR THE PURPOSE OF being made righteous by faith alone
But now that faith has come,
BUT because Christ has come as our propitiation
we are no longer under a guardian,
We are not captives to the condemnation of the law anymore
for in Christ Jesus
AND AS A RESULT all those in Christ
u you are all sons of God,
are now children (not captives) of God/loved by God
BY faith to do what He wants/you want (not by works)
For as many of you as v were baptized w into Christ have x put on Christ.
WHAT I MEAN IS Christ is now the means for your righteousness - it is not your doing that justifies or condemns, but your belief in Christ, who has already done, that justifies or condemns
y There is neither Jew nor Greek,
THEREFORE, there's no issue of law as to who can be justified, grace has come, and can be received by all - both Jew or Gentile (spiritually speaking)
there is neither slave 1 nor free,
OR slave or master (socio-economically speaking)
z there is no male and female,
OR male or female (authoritatively speaking)
for you are all one in Christ Jesus.
BECAUSE Christ is our righteousness
And a if you are Christ’s,
FURTHERMORE, IF Christ is your righteousness
then you are Abraham’s offspring,
THEN you are God's promises to Abraham apply to you (because Christ is the true offspring)
b heirs according to promise.
IN OTHER WORDS, you are children of grace
How could God promise one thing to Abraham and then add the law later? It seems contradictory!
From captives to sons - from being in prison for a short time, to being children who will receive an inheritance.
There are now, therefore, none of these heirarchies for salvific faith - all are set free as sons and daughters by faith in Christ - all can have faith and it is not dependent on being a Jew, or you are not qualified by your debt to other men, and you are not qualified by your gender (for all are equally unworthy and made worthy).