Thursday: Ishmael and Isaac Today

The Promised Child

Paul’s brief sketch of Israel’s history was designed to counter the arguments made by his opponents who claimed that they were the true descendants of Abraham and that Jerusalem — the center of Jewish Christianity and the law — was their mother. The Gentiles, they charged, were illegitimate; if they wanted to become true followers … [Click to read more …]

HopeSS: The Two Covenants

You can view an in-depth discussion of “The Two Covenants” in the Hope Sabbath School class led by Pastor Derek Morris. (Adobe Flash Player version.) A Youtube version of this week’s lesson at Hope Sabbath School is below. You can download the video, the MP3 audio, and the lesson outline from the HopeTV Sabbath School … [Click to read more …]

Wednesday: Hagar and Mt. Sinai (Gal. 4:21-31)

Hagar and Ishmael

What type of covenant relationship did God want to establish with His people at Sinai? What similarities does it share with God’s promise to Abraham? Exod. 6:2-8, Exod. 19:3-6, Deut. 32:10-12. God desired to share the same covenant relationship with the children of Israel at Sinai that He shared with Abraham. In fact, similarities exist between God’s words to … [Click to read more …]

Tuesday: Abraham, Sarah and Hagar


Why does Paul have such a disparaging view of the incident with Hagar? Gal. 4:21-31, Gen. 16. What crucial point about salvation is Paul making through his use of this Old Testament story? Hagar was an Egyptian slave in Abram’s household. Hagar’s place in the Genesis story is directly related to Abram’s failure to believe God’s promise. … [Click to read more …]

Sunday: Covenant Basics

Joshua Renews the Covenant

Many regard Paul’s interpretation of the history of Israel in Galatians 4:21-31 as the most difficult passage in his letter. That’s because it is a highly complex argument that requires a broad knowledge of Old Testament persons and events. The first step in making sense of this passage is to have a basic understanding of an Old … [Click to read more …]

Sabbath: The Two Covenants

Image © Pacific Press from

Read for This Week’s Study: Gal. 4:21-31; Gen. 1:28; Gen. 2:2-3; Gen. 3:15; Gen. 15:1-6; Exod. 6:2-8; Exod. 19:3-6. Memory Text: “But the Jerusalem that is above is free, and she is our mother” (Galatians 4:26, NIV). Christians who reject the authority of the Old Testament often see the giving of the law on Sinai as inconsistent with the gospel. They conclude that the … [Click to read more …]

Friday: Further Thought – Paul’s Pastoral Appeal

Spectacles on Bible

Further Thought: “In the Galatian churches, open, unmasked error was supplanting the gospel message. Christ, the true foundation of the faith, was virtually renounced for the obsolete ceremonies of Judaism. The apostle saw that if the believers in Galatia were to be saved from the dangerous influences which threatened them, the most decisive measures must … [Click to read more …]

Thursday: Speaking the Truth

Speaking the Truth

Read Galatians 4:16. What powerful point is Paul making there? In what ways might you yourself have experienced something similar? (See also John 3:19; Matt. 26:64-65; Jer. 36:17-23.) The expression “speaking the truth” often has negative connotations, especially in our day and age, when it can be viewed as a hard-hitting, no-holds-barred, spare-no-enemies tactic of telling someone the facts, no … [Click to read more …]

He’s Like Me

Dear brothers and sisters, I plead with you to live as I do…Galatians 4:12 NLT So I urge you to imitate me. 1 Corinthians 4:16 NLT Why is Paul telling us to be like him? Aren’t we supposed to follow Jesus as our only example? There’s a story of a man who was trying to … [Click to read more …]