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I am a Christian, I have to circumcise my sons - right? NO!!

Just like Christians don't have to eat just "clean" food, they aren't required to be circ'ed, either.

"The circumcised believers who had come with Peter were astonished that the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out on even the Gentiles." Acts 10:45

Acts 11:1-18 talks about this, but it's really long, so I won't quote it all. It tells how Peter was sent to the Gentiles (uncircumcised) and that the power of God in a man's life is more important than what he eats or whether he has been circ'ed.

Acts 15:1-21 talks about the Council at Jerusalem. Some believers were teaching "Unless you are circumcised, according to the custom taught by Moses, you cannot be saved." (v. 1 & 5). Peter's response was this, "Brothers, you know that some time ago God made a choice among you that the Gentiles might hear from my lips the message of the gospel and believe. God, who knows the heart, showed that he accepted them by giving the Holy Spirit to them, just as he did to us. He made no distinction between us and them (circed & uncirced), for he purified their hearts by faith. Now then, why do you try to test God by putting on the necks of the disciples a yoke that neither we nor our father have been able to bear? No! We believe it is through the grace of our Lord Jesus that we are saved, just as they are." (v. 7-11)

"If those who are not circumcised keep the law's requirements, will they not be regarded as though they were circumcised? The one who is not circumcised physically and yet obeys the law will condemn you who, even though you have the written code and circumcision, are a lawbreaker." Romans 2:26-27

Romans 2:29 "No, a man is a Jew if he is one inwardly; and circumcision is circumcision of the heart, by the Spirit, not by the written code..."

"...there is only one God, who will justify the circumcised by faith and the uncircumcised through that same faith."

Romans 4 is about Abraham's justification by faith and deals with circ. "We have been saying that Abraham's faith was credited to him as righteousness. Under what circumstances was it credited? Was it after he was circumcised, or before? It was not after, but before!...So then, he is the father of all who believe but have not been circumcised, in order that righteousness might be credited to them." (v. 9-11)

1 Cor. 7:19 "Circumcision is nothing and uncircumcision is nothing. Keeping God's commands is what counts."

Read Gal. 5. Wow!!! "Mark my words! I, Paul, tell you that if you let yourselves be circumcised, Christ will be of no value to you at all. Again I declare to every man who lets himself be circumcised that he is obligated to obey the whole law. You who are trying to be justified by law have been alienated from Christ; you have fallen away from grace. But by faith we eagerly await through the Spirit the righteousness for which we hope. For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision has any value. The only thing that counts if faith expressing itself through love." (v. 2-6)

Gal. 6:12-15 "Those who want to make a good impression outwardly are trying to compel you to be circumcised. The only reason they do this is to avoid being persecuted for the cross of Christ. Not even those who are circumcised obey the law, yet they want you to be circumcised that they may boast about your flesh. May I never boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, through which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world. Neither circumcision nor uncircumcision means anything; what counts is a new creation."

"See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the basic principles of this world rather than on Christ...In him (Christ) you were also circumcised, in the putting off of the sinful nature, not with a circumcision done by the hands of men but with the circumcision done by Christ, having been buried with him in baptism and raised with him through your faith in the power of God, who raised him from the dead. When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your sinful nature, God made you alive with Christ.." Col 2:8 & 11-13.

Paul also writes, "For there are many rebellious people, mere talkers and deceivers, especially those of the circumcision group. They must be silenced, because they are ruining the whole households by teaching things they ought not to teach--and that for the sake of dishonest gain." Titus 1:10-11

Ulrike & Roman (3/24/98)

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