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Chapter 5

1This is the freedom with which Christ has freed us. So stand firm in it, and do not get under a yoke of slavery again.

2Why, I, Paul, tell you that if you let yourselves be circumcised, Christ can do nothing for you. 3I insist again to any man who lets himself be circumcised, that he is under obligation to obey the whole Law. 4You people who propose to be made upright by law have finished with Christ; you have lost your hold upon God’s favor. 5But we, by the Spirit, through faith wait for the uprightness we hope for. 6For in union with Christ Jesus, neither circumcision nor the want of it counts for anything, but only faith acting through love.

7You were making such progress! Who has stopped your obeying the truth? 8That kind of persuasion never came from him who called you! 9A little yeast will make all the dough rise. 10I am confident in the Lord that you will not take a different view. The man who is unsettling you will have to pay the penalty for it, no matter who he is. 11And I, brothers, if I am still preaching circumcision, why am I still being persecuted? If that is the case, the cross has ceased to be an obstacle, I suppose! 12I wish the people who are upsetting you would go on, and have themselves emasculated!

13For you, brothers, have been called to freedom; only do not make your freedom an excuse for the physical, but in love be slaves to one another. 14For the whole Law is summed up in one saying: “You must love your neighbor as you do yourself.” 15But if you bite one another and eat one another, take care, or you will be destroyed by one another.

16I mean this: Live by the Spirit, and then you will not indulge your physical cravings. 17For the physical cravings are against the Spirit, and the cravings of the Spirit are against the physical; the two are in opposition, so that you cannot do anything you please. 18But if you are guided by the Spirit, you are not subject to law. 19The things our physical nature does are clear enough—immorality, impurity, licentiousness, 20idolatry, sorcery, enmity, quarreling, jealousy, anger, selfishness, dissension, party-spirit, 21envy, drunkenness, carousing, and the like. I warn you as I did before that people who do such things will have no share in the Kingdom of God. 22But what the Spirit produces is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23gentleness, self-control. There is no law against such things! 24Those who belong to Jesus the Christ have crucified the physical nature with its propensities and cravings.

25If we live by the Spirit, let us be guided by the Spirit. 26Let us not in our vanity challenge one another or envy one another.

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