Child, Servant, Son
Galatians 4:1–7 (KJV)
Now I say, That the heir, as long as he is a child, differeth nothing from a servant, though he be lord of all;
But is under tutors and governors until the time appointed of the father.
Even so we, when we were children, were in bondage under the elements of the world:
But when the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law,
To redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons.
And because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father.
Wherefore thou art no more a servant, but a son; and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ.
There is, in Galatians 4:1–7, three levels of spiritual relationship:
In this context, the passage speaks of the unsaved/unregenerate. He is perhaps aware of those things that are spiritual. The Jews certainly were. But he is lost. He must be kept, guarded, fed, cared for. With a child, the future outcome is uncertain.
Because of the context, I would identify this one as saved. He no longer needs to be tended. He may be busily tending to others. I think I know a lot of Christians happily (sometimes not so happily) engaged in this service, not knowing there is another place God wants them.
To as many as received Him, to them gave He power to become the sons of God… I do not deny that the Christian life is one of service. What I do insist is that it is not all the Christian life is.
Desire to serve. Seek out opportunities for Christian service. But don’t stop there. Embrace your kinship with God the Father and with Jesus Christ. Serve not as a servant, but as an heir of God through Christ.
 John 1:12
To my readers:
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