Home > Hermeneutics > The Law being given with a gracious end in view, to pave the way for the Savior

The Law being given with a gracious end in view, to pave the way for the Savior

“Wherefore then serveth the law? It was added because of transgressions” (Galatians 3:19).

That answer admits of two different significations. First, the immediate purpose in the Law’s being formerly proclaimed and enforced subsequently to the promised inheritance to Abraham and his seed was to place a bridle upon the carnality of the Hebrews and check their sinning—by making known to them God’s will and the fearful penalty of flouting His authority. Second, its ultimate design was to prepare the way for Christ, by demonstrating their need of Him because of their awful guilt. The “because of transgressions” is intentionally general enough to include both: to suppress transgressions, to make manifest transgressors. So too the next verse has a dual meaning: “Now a mediator is not a mediator of one [party] but God is one.” In view of the context (v. 10 onwards, especially 16-19), “God is one” signifies first, that His purpose is immutable. His design was the same in both the Abrahamic and Sinaitic covenants—the Law being given with a gracious end in view, to pave the way for the Savior: hence the question and answer in verse 21. Yet in view of the whole context it is equally clear, second, that “God is one” means that His method of salvation remains unaltered through all dispensations.

Arthur W. Pink-Interpretation of the Scriptures

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