The Present Use of the Law
Galatians 3:19
Why then serves the law? It was added because of transgressions, till the seed should come to whom the promise was made…


1. To restrain and limit transgression.

2. To bring to light transgressions.

3. To convince of transgression.

4. To prepare men to seek and receive the mercy of God in Christ.


1. It is a rule by which they are to be governed.

2. It serves to warn and guard them against the commission of sin.

3. To make them grateful for the privileges they enjoy.

4. To keep them in close dependence on Jesus.In conclusion: the final judgment must be administered in accordance with the provisions of the law.

(S. H. Tyng, D. D.)

I. THE LAW WAS LIKE A TORCH carried into the dark crevices and cellars of human nature that it might reveal the foul shapes that lurked there, and rouse man to long for a righteousness which it could not itself confer.

II. In the process of doing this, THE LAW AGGRAVATED THE VERY EVIL IT BROUGHT TO LIGHT: the presence of a Divine rule which forbade the indulgence of human passion had the effect of irritating those passions into new self-asserting activity (Romans 7:7). In the absence of the law, the sinful tendency had been inert, "but when the commandment came sin revived and I died."

III. NOT THAT THE LAW WAS ANSWERABLE FOR THIS RESULT. In itself it was holy, just, and good; the cause lay in the sinful tendency of fallen human nature.

IV. SO THE LAW INFLICTED ON THE CONSCIENCE that was not fatally benumbed an OVERWHELMING CONVICTION THAT RIGHTEOUSNESS in the way of legal obedience was A THING IMPOSSIBLE; and was very far from furnishing a man with a real righteousness, of making him what he should be, correspondent to the true ideal.

V. THIS CONVICTION PREPARED MEN FOR A RIGHTEOUSNESS which should not be the product of human efforts, but a gift from heaven; a righteousness to be attained by the adhesion of faith to the perfect Moral Being, Jesus Christ, so that the believer's life becomes incorporate with His, and man becomes such as he should be, viz., "justified by faith."

(Canon Liddon.)

Parallel Verses
KJV: Wherefore then serveth the law? It was added because of transgressions, till the seed should come to whom the promise was made; and it was ordained by angels in the hand of a mediator.

WEB: What then is the law? It was added because of transgressions, until the seed should come to whom the promise has been made. It was ordained through angels by the hand of a mediator.

The Object of the Law
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