Human wills (Gal. 3:15)


I give a human example.

Once a man’s will

Has been ratified,

No one adds to it.

No one annuls it.”

Ἀδελφοί, κατὰ ἄνθρωπον λέγω. ὅμως ἀνθρώπου κεκυρωμένην διαθήκην οὐδεὶς ἀθετεῖ ἢ ἐπιδιατάσσεται.

Paul said, “Brothers (Ἀδελφοί)!  I give a human example (κατὰ ἄνθρωπον λέγω).  Once a man’s (ὅμως ἀνθρώπου) will (διαθήκην) has been ratified (κεκυρωμένην), no one adds to it (ἢ ἐπιδιατάσσεται).  No one annuls it or sets it aside (οὐδεὶς ἀθετεῖ).”  Only the Pauline letters used this word κεκυρωμένην, that means to make valid, ratify, confirm, or assure.  Only this Galatian letter used this unique word ἐπιδιατάσσεται, that means to add provisions or additions.  Paul responded to the Galatian readers calling them brothers.  He then gave a human example of what he was talking about.  He indicated that once a person had made a will or testament covenant, no one could add to it.  No one could annul or make it void.  Human laws accepted a ratified will as valid.  Paul was going to explain the difference between the promise or covenant with Abraham and that of Moses.  How did they fit together?  Paul was using the example of a secular will here to help them understand the role of God in the life of the Israelites.  Do you have a will?