(Yet we don't have to be!) God gives the topic of circumcision extensive coverage in the New Testament. The Old Testament only references this thirty-two times, while the New Testament mentions it seventy-six times. (See Luke 1:59; 2:21; John 7:22-23; Acts 7:8; 10:45; 11:2; 15:1, 5, 24; 16:3; 21:21; Rom. 2:25-29; 3:1, 30; 4:9-12; 15:8; 1 Cor. 7:18-19; Gal. 2:3, 7-9, 12; 5:2-3, 6, 11; 6:12-13, 15; Eph. 2:11; Phil. 3:3, 5; Col. 2:11; 3:11; 4:11 and Titus 1:10.) The New Testament's seventy-six mentions of circumcision far exceed its references to adultery (35x), hell (25x), repentance (66x), Sabbaths (64x), speaking in tongues (29x), confession (29x), or being born again (3x). The Bible refers to the uncircumcised of the nations as Gentiles. Thus, consistent with the New Testament attention on circumcision, the bulkier Old Testament references the word Gentiles only half as often (52x) as does the slimmer New Testament (99x). Many Christians forget the historical fact that Jesus was circumcised, and many others have no idea why. Yet this happened strictly according to the Law of Moses on the eighth day after His birth. "And when eight days were completed for the circumcision of the Child, His name was called JESUS..." (Luke 2:21). God gave this command in the Old Testament. Then the LORD spoke to Moses, saying, "Speak to the children of Israel, saying: 'If a woman has conceived, and borne a male child, then... on the eighth day the flesh of his foreskin shall be circumcised'" (Lev. 12:1-3). The law of circumcision prescribed in the Mosaic Law was based on God's covenant with Abraham. For when he was old God appeared and said to him, "This is My covenant which you [Abraham] shall keep, between Me and you and your descendants after you: Every male child among you shall be circumcised; and you shall be circumcised in the flesh of your foreskins, and it shall be a sign of the covenant between Me and you. He who is eight days old among you shall be circumcised" (Gen. 17:1, 10-12). Early believers hotly debated circumcision doctrine. Why all the New Testament emphasis on circumcision? Because the material on circumcision, the controversy surrounding it, and the resolution of the debate are fundamental to unwrapping the plot of the Bible. The solution of many of the big doctrinal debates lies in understanding this strange rite given to Abraham. Circumcision is the key!
Today's Resource: Bob Enyart's Life's Work - The Plot
Grasping the overview of the Bible is the key to its details! You can read Bob's best-selling book, The Plot in paperback or as a downloadable PDF or in Spanish as La Trama. Or you can listen to Bob's Plot Seminar or get the entire set of all five of Bob's Plot Bible Study Albums on MP3 CD or even check out The Plot Boys for kids and Bible students of all ages! You'll love this powerful teaching through Scripture or take advantage of our 30-day money-back guarantee!