Which things are an allegory: for these are the two covenants. Galatians 4:24 KJV
Bro. Chad Johnson
An allegory is a figurative sentence or discourse which the principal subject is described by another subject resembling it in its properties and circumstances.
What the apostle Paul is saying is that the two sons that Abraham had were a picture of the law and grace. Paul has been dealing with the Galatians in previous chapters about their going back to thinking that there was salvation in the law.
Paul told them in chapter one, verse six that he marveled that they were so soon removed from Christ to another gospel. God has dealt with fallen men in two basic ways.
The first covenant was the law, which consisted of the moral, ceremonial and dietary laws. They did what these laws commanded looking through the eye of faith toward the coming Messiah. They were, however, in bondage because they were unable to keep the law perfectly and the ceremonial law could not take away sins.
Paul compares this bondage to Hagar and her son, Ashmael. Paul says Hagar is Mt. Sinai in Arabia. This refers to God giving Moses the law on Mt. Sinai. The law is not by faith, so was Ishmael’s birth not by faith.
The second of the two covenants is the covenant of grace. This is described in comparison to Iassac, the son of the free woman, Sara. This birth, because of the deadness of her womb, was totally by faith. Issac was the promised child from which eventually came the Lord Jesus Christ.
The law came by Moses at Mt. Sinai, but grace came by Jesus Christ at Mt. Calvary.
Paul concludes by telling about the casting out of Hagar and Ishmael and likewise should the keeping of the law for salvation be cast out.
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