But when the fullness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law,…
It was the fulness of time.
I. IN REFERENCE TO THE GIVER. The moment had arrived which God had ordained from the beginning, and foretold by His prophets, for Messiah's coming.
II. IN REFERENCE TO THE RECIPIENT. The gospel was withheld until the world had arrived at mature age; law had worked out its educational purpose and now was susperseded. This educational work had been twofold:
1. Negative. It was the purpose of all law, but especially of the Mosaic law, to deepen the conviction of sin and thus to show the inability of all existing systems to bring men near to God.
2. Positive. The comparison of the child implies more than a negative effect. A moral and spiritual expansion, which rendered the world more capable of apprehending the gospel than it would have been at an earlier age, must be assumed, corresponding to the growth of the individual; since otherwise the metaphor would be robbed of more than half its meaning. The primary reference in all this is plainly to the Mosaic law; but the whole context shows that the Gentile converts of Galatia are also included, and that they, too, are regarded as having undergone an elementary discipline, up to a certain point analogous to that of the Jews.
Parallel VersesKJV: But when the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law,