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Monday, August 10, 2009

Exhibit C: Circumcision

What is the profit of circumcision? Much in every way!
~ Romans 3:1-2 (NKJV)

When Abram was ninety-nine years old, the LORD appeared ... "Behold, My covenant is with you ... I will make you exceedingly fruitful; and I will make nations of you, and kings shall come from you. And I will establish My covenant between Me and you and your descendants ... and you shall be circumcised in the flesh of your foreskins, and it shall be a sign of the covenant between Me and you... And the uncircumcised male child, who is not circumcised in the flesh of his foreskin, that person shall be cut off from his people; he has broken My covenant."
~ Genesis 17:1,4,6-7,11,14 (NKJV)

In Him you were also circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, by putting off the body of the sins of the flesh, by the circumcision of Christ ...
~ Colossians 2:11 (NKJV)

In establishing his case for Christ, Paul next puts forth the covenant of circumcision.

The act testifies to the existence of God because it is too unreasonable for men to come up with on their own. Whatever other manner a man might mark himself as set apart to God, taking a knife to his most vital piece of anatomy could only be done if he believed in Someone much bigger than himself.

Before Abraham put his son Isaac on the altar to demonstrate faith, he'd first shown his faith in God's covenant by accepting circumcision. God had promised a son, and Abraham did have a son of flesh, before circumcision, by Hagar. God is in part saying strip off the flesh where you reproduce, and watch how fruitful I will make you. In your faith you will reproduce not what is of the flesh, but a miracle which can only be of Me.

And so, the Christian must also be circumcised. Not by cutting the body with a knife, but by doing what can only be done by faith in Someone much bigger than ourselves, and act too unreasonable to come up with on our own. We mark ourselves set apart to God by cutting off the will of our own flesh, and accepting in its place His will. The one who believes in Christ no longer puts faith in being fulfilled and fruitful in the strength of human flesh, but will now fulfill desire and be fruitful in the strength of God's Spirit.

Love is number one on the list which describes the fruit of the Spirit.

How important is it to reproduce God's fruit by His Spirit? It is what marks us as His! Jesus said in Luke 6:43-45 that we prove ourselves believers by our spiritual fruit. And in John 13:35 Jesus says that we'd be known as His disciples by our love for one another.

Whatever brief pain may be involved to cut off our flesh in that which seems most vital to us, we receive far more from the Lord in return.

Lord YHWH, it seems unreasonable to exist as a living sacrifice. Too often we make it look painful. Please enable us to cut off the unnecessary flesh in our lives—and to recognize what You give in return—so that the fruit of love, joy, peace, and all else Your Spirit reproduces, will shine forth in testimony to You.

Feedback appreciated! Post to "Comments" or e-mail to Copyright 2009, Anne Lang Bundy, all rights reserved.


  1. Let me add a great big amen sweetie.

  2. I admire how you tackle everything in Scripture. Everything.

    I'd be inclined to skip over circumcision and run quickly in the other direction. But you run into it.

    This really strikes me:

    "The act testifies to the existence of God because it is too unreasonable for men to come up with on their own."

  3. T. Anne, thank you for the affirmation. I today lost one of the men who'd been following my blog.

    Denise, thank you for the great big amen! :D

    Jennifer, Scripture does not avoid sticky issues either. I try to handle them appropriately and meaningfully.

  4. ... Which is precisely why I keep coming back here.

    Anne -- Stay with it. Be encouraged by the fact that you speak Truth, and what you say aligns with Truth.

    Well done, good and faithful one.

  5. Thanks Jennifer. Words like yours are part of what keeps me here. So are faithful readers. You're all gifts from the Lord.


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