Original Research

Freedom in Galatians: A socio-historical study of the slavery and adoption imagery

Chih-Wei Chang
In die Skriflig/In Luce Verbi | Vol 56, No 1 | a2883 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/ids.v56i1.2883 | © 2022 Chih-Wei Chang | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 15 July 2022 | Published: 15 December 2022

About the author(s)

Chih-Wei Chang, Taiwan Graduate School of Theology, Taiwan; and, Faculty of Theology, North-West University, Potchefstroom, South Africa


Paul’s freedom in Galatians is the initiation of redemption acted by God’s grace through his only Son, Jesus Christ, to set human beings free. Christian freedom is said to be the process of being freed from slavery to freedom; however, this article is giving a different insight into freedom in Galatians, that is, the progress of Christian freedom is not from slavery to freedom, but slavery to slavery. The main point is whom one belongs to: either sin and flesh, or Jesus Christ. Therefore, a full understanding of the meaning of freedom in Galatians has to take the imagery of slavery and adoption into consideration in order to be fully comprehensive.

Contribution: This article deals with basic Christian attitudes towards faith, especially regarding the identity of being a Christian and how to live out the characteristics of a Christian life by recognising the true freedom in Christ.


freedom; socio-historical study; slavery; adoption; Galatians


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