Wednesday, 22 June 2016
For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision avails anything, but a new creation. Galatians 6:15
The words “For in Christ Jesus” are given to show that a change occurs when one receives Christ. Past distinctions are set aside and there is a wholeness that all alike share in. To show that this is true in the highest sense, he continues with the words, “…neither circumcision nor uncircumcision avails anything.”
Paul has used circumcision as the benchmark requirement for works of the law. If one is not circumcised, then there is no other thing that he can do under the law to be pleasing to God. Adherence to the law starts with circumcision. However, in Christ who fulfilled the law, this preeminent distinction is utterly swept away. This is such an important point that he has stated it in similar terms in both Galatians 5:6 and in 1 Corinthians 7:19.
We are now identified, not with an external mark upon our body, but with the internal sealing of the Holy Spirit. Being “in” Christ comes by faith in Him. This is the thought of Romans 10:9. When we believe, we are saved. At that moment, we are sealed with the Holy Spirit according to Ephesians 1:13, 14. This is our “baptism of the Holy Spirit.” It is a one-time occurrence upon belief in Christ.
From that moment, we are “a new creation.” God positionally sets us in the heavenly places at that moment (as noted in Ephesians 2:6) showing that salvation is a “done deal.” The concept of eternal salvation permeates Scripture. Verses such as 2 Corinthians 5:7, when looked at objectively, can mean nothing other than this. To assume that we are a “new creation” and yet could suddenly become unsaved is unfathomable.
We are a new creation because God in us “has made all things new.” The old is passed away; the new has come. And it is all a work of Christ.
Life application: If Paul says that being circumcised or be uncircumcised has no bearing on who we are in Christ, and as circumcision is the preeminent sign of acceptance into the terms of the Law of Moses, then it means that the Law of Moses, in its entirety, is of no effect for those in Christ. If you are still adhering to precepts of the law, you are estranged from Christ. You are a debtor to the whole law. Put away your silly attempts at finding righteousness through self and put on Christ, wholly and completely.
Lord God, wonderful and precious it is to be in Your presence and to share in Your daily abundance. Today, grant us the peace of Christ in our lives, and direct our steps according to Your will and Your word. Be with us through trials and difficulties and restore to us joy and contentment. We ask this knowing that it is undeserved. And should our trials continue, give us just enough strength through them to be able to praise You. With this, we will be well-pleased. Amen.