THE PURPOSE AND POWER OF CIRCUMCISION

BIBLE READING: ROMANS 2:25-29; JEREMIAH 4:4; PHILIPPIANS 3:3

In Him also you were circumcised with a circumcision not made with hands, but in a [spiritual] circumcision [performed by] Christ by stripping off the body of the flesh (the whole corrupt, carnal nature with its passions and lusts).[Thus you were circumcised when] you were buried with Him in [your] baptism, in which you were also raised with Him [to a new life] through [your] faith in the Working of God [as displayed] when He raised Him up from the dead. Colossians 2:11-12 (AMP)

When God told Abraham to be circumcised, he was past the age of bearing children and his wife, Sarah, was incapable of having children (see Genesis 18:11). Nevertheless, it would be through Sarah’s womb (see Genesis 17:21; 18:14) that God would fulfill His Promise of innumerable offspring to Abraham (see Genesis 12:1–3). God’s Covenant with Abraham could only be realized by a miraculous intervention.

After God made His Promise to Abraham, every male member of Abraham’s household was required to be circumcised (see Genesis 17:15-27). Every male—and every woman, knew that Circumcision was connected to God’s Promise.

Everyone in Abraham’s household witnessed the miracle of Isaac’s birth. From that point on, every male understood why they had been circumcised: Their entire race—their very existence—began with a miraculous act of God. Every woman was reminded of this when she had sexual relations with her Israelite husband, and when her sons were circumcised. Circumcision was a visible, continuous reminder that Israel owed its existence to God.

In the New Testament, membership in God’s family is not by a physical circumcision of the flesh but by faith in the Work of God which was established on the Cross in Christ. We were all in Christ when God performed the Work of Circumcision. It is faith in Christ, not a Jewish identity signified by circumcision, that makes someone part of the Church. Paul even connects Baptism to Circumcision (see Colossians 2:10–12). Like Circumcision, Baptism is a response driven by faith. Both signs are for men and women.

Romans 2:28-29(AMP) says, “For he is not a [real] Jew who is only one outwardly and publicly, nor is [true] circumcision something external and physical. But he is a Jew who is one inwardly, and [true] circumcision is of the heart, a spiritual and not a literal [matter]. His praise is not from men but from God.”

Circumcision in the New Covenant is of the heart. Deuteronomy 30:6(NKJV) says, “And the LORD your God will circumcise your heart and the heart of your descendants, to love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul, that you may live.”

In summary we see from the above Scriptures that:
• Circumcision is an Act of God which was established in Christ.
• We were brought into a Covenant of Love through that Work.
• We are also empowered by faith in that Work to put off the old man and its sinful desires and live in total obedience to Christ.

PRAYER:
Lord, cause me to obey Your Laws and do whatever You command in Jesus’ Name. Amen.

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