Circumcision or uncircumcision, what does that mean for us? It could mean something very definite, and at the same time something very universal.
It means that no religion produces the new creation race being . Circumcision is a religious rite observed by the Jews. Sacrifices are religious rites observed by the pagans.
Baptism is a religious rite observed by the Christians. And since the words of Paul stand for the whole religion to which they belong, we can say that no religion matters, only a new state of being matters.
Let us think about this striking assertion of Paul's. What it says first is that Christianity is not a religion at all. It is basically the message for the new creation race people. When Christianity is made a religion, it is like either circumcision or uncircumcision, no more, no less. In our present world, Christianity encounters several forms of circumcision and uncircumcision.
Circumcision can stand today for everything called religious, and uncircumcision forever thing called secular. There are great religions other than Christianity, I'll leave them nameless because you know most of them.
They have their myths and their rites, so to speak, there circumcisions, which given each their respective distinctions.
Then there are the secular movements, fascism, communism, humanism, and ethical idealism. They try to add void myths and rites, and they represent, so to speak uncircumcision.
Nevertheless, they also claim ultimate truth and demand complete devotion. How shall the Christ life believer respond to them? Shall we tell them, come to us, for we are a better religion, and our kind of circumcision is higher and better than yours? Shall we praise Christianity, our way of life, the religious, as well as the secular? Shall we make of the Christ life message a success story and tell them as do advertisers, try it with us, and you will see how important the Christ life is for everybody?
Some missionaries and some ministers and some Christ life believers respond as cited above. They show a total misunderstanding of the Christ life.
The apostle Paul, was a missionary, a preacher, and a Layman, all at once, says something different.
He says that no particular religion matters, not ours, not yours. But something has happened which does matter, something that judges you and me, your religion and mine.
God has birthed in the human being another person. This other person is the true and only life of the human being. From this person comes a whole new creature, and absolutely new race of people.
A new being has appeared, and every human being is ask by God and the gospel message to participate in it.
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