Wednesday, January 3, 2024

Saying 53


His disciples said to him, ‘Is circumcision advantageous or not?’

He said to them, ‘If it were advantageous, fathers would conceive them in their mother already circumcised. Instead, true circumcision in the spirit is circumcision gives all the advantage.’


Saying 53 is another anti-Judean sentiment attributed to Jesus. Paul’s theology was that, although Judeans obeyed the commands of the Torah, gentiles were not required to when they converted to follow Jesus. To assure gentiles that they were safe by trusting God without embracing Judean practices—circumcision in particular—Paul pointed to a passage in Genesis which says that Abraham was in good standing with God before even he was circumcised. So although Judeans were required by the Torah to practice physical circumcision, Paul believed that act represented a ‘spiritual’ circumcision that applied to all of God’s followers, whether Judean or gentile. Paul’s arguments appears to have been misinterpreted almost immediately, by both his critics and his followers, as a complete rejection of the authority of the Torah’s laws.



5.11 For in the Anointed One Jesus, neither circumcision nor uncircumcision counts for anything. The only thing that counts is faith working through love.


3.2–4 Beware of the dogs, beware of the evil workers, beware of those who mutilate the flesh! For it is we who are the circumcision, who worship in the spirit of God and boast in the Anointed One Jesus, and have no confidence in the flesh—even though I, too, have reason for confidence in the flesh.


3.1–2 Then what advantage does the Judean have? Or what is the value of circumcision? Much, in every way. For in the first place the Jews were entrusted with the oracles of God.


2.11 In him also you were circumcised with a spiritual circumcision, by putting off the body of the flesh in the circumcision of the Anointed One.

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