Galatians 4:3 In the same way we also, when we were children, were enslaved to the elementary principles of the world.

Train up a Child

Paul had used simple legal language in the prior verse, now He is bring it down to earth level. He is comparing children who are under subjection to their parents until they become of age. This was an example the even the common everyday Jew could understand. Paul was a master at layering His arguments. When we were children; not in age, but in knowledge of divine, and spiritual things; which must be understood of every individual person among them, for there were some grown men, some men of great Jewish faith, with little knowledge, and experience; but of the bulk of the people of the Jews were of no special standing. The Jews were like children, peevish, froward, and perverse, and often stood in need of correction and chastisement; and as children are pleased with pictures, shows, sights, and gaudy amusements, so they were taken with an external pompous form of worship, and which they had, and was suited to their infant state; and which infant state of the Jewish church commenced from the time of their coming up out of Egypt, and lasted until the times of the Messiah. It was hard for them to throw out their Jewish traditions with all there rituals and assorted laws. Its hard to convince a person two inches from Heaven headed to hell than to reach a pagan who is two inches from hell knowing they are depraved with no religion to fall back on. The religious Jews felt no need of repentance and a lot of them would have been content to stay with the Law.

Gregory Lane