Robert McLaughlin Bible Ministries
The circumcision made without hands.
Friday, February 1, 2008
Each new species, the racial Jew and the new spiritual species, the church, originates from a category of biblical death.
Israel originated from Abraham’s sexual death,
ROM 4:17-21; HEB 11:11-12.
The church originates from the baptism of the Holy Spirit, our identification with the substitutionary spiritual death of Christ on the cross.
Each new species was formed from a significant event in history connected with circumcision.
Circumcision was to be the ritual to commemorate the establishment of the new racial species. Circumcision consists in cutting away the foreskin of the male phallus using a flint knife for the operation, EXO 4:25; JOS 5:2.
This ritual was related to Abraham’s supergrace sexual prosperity and represented his adjustment to the justice of God, GEN 27:9-24.
Circumcision is a sign, a token, a training aid, of all that is related to the ultra-supergrace prosperity of Abraham and the Jews. The male phallus on Abraham was dead, it was impotent, it was useless in the function of sex, and therefore the very place of the ritual becomes very significant, the cutting off of the flesh.
That does not bother him at all because he knows that if God gives a promise, God keeps His promise, and that God has the ability to overcome any handicap related to that promise.
Once you understand the entire essence of God, you never limit God at any stage of your spiritual life.
Circumcision, which is the removal of useless skin from the foreskin of the phallus, commemorates the grace of God and the principle of justice plus omnipotence.
God must keep His word, and Abraham has learned that God always honors His word, no matter how hopeless a situation.
There was absolutely no possibility of perpetuation of the new race, the Jew, apart from grace.
One of the greatest manifestations of the grace of God throughout all of human history is the hopeless situation.
Circumcision represents the fact that Abraham with doctrine in his soul recognizes that God will take care of this situation.
God provided for those helpless situations in eternity past, and Abraham came to recognize that the solutions to his temporal problems existed before he did.
He not only had tremendous sexual vigor, but there were both, not only the spiritual changes, which occurred prior to this, but there were mental and physical changes as well.
The first act of circumcision performed on Abraham not only revived his sexual ability for procreation, but was the moment when God established the new race of Israel.
The first ritual, the first act of circumcision, was to recognize supergrace blessing and the fact that God keeps His word.
As a ritual, circumcision has no meaning to the Jew who rejects Christ as Savior, for ritual without reality is meaningless.
ROM 9:6b For they are not all Israel who are descended from Israel;
The new spiritual species is created through circumcision as well, but it is the Baptism of the Holy Spirit at salvation which began on the day of Pentecost.
The baptism of the Spirit at salvation and the resultant positional sanctification is the only circumcision of the Church-age.
“In the removal of the body of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ” = “by the renunciation of the body or the flesh” - the old sin nature which indwells the body.
“By the circumcision of Christ” = your retroactive positional truth.
The spiritual circumcision of being entered into union with Christ is the sign of the new spiritual species, “a circumcision made or performed without human hands,” COL 2:11.
Physical circumcision was cutting off of a part of the flesh as a symbol of a covenant relationship with God and His people.
In COL 2:11, spiritual circumcision is “removal of” not a part of the body, but the entire “body of the flesh.”
The “removal of it” is positional truth, the truth that arises as a result of the believer being placed in Christ by the Spirit’s baptizing work.
The sin nature was judged by Christ in His death, so the believer by virtue of his union and identification with Christ shares that “removal” that Christ accomplished, just as he shares Christ’s fullness and is declared to be “complete” in Him, COL 2:10.
The believer’s circumcision is not only a spiritual reality consisting in the putting off of the body of the flesh; it is more precisely Christ’s circumcision, effected by Him and imputed to the believer.
Our Lord’s circumcision mentioned in this passage has no reference to His physical circumcision, LUK 2:21, when He was eight days old, but is a meaningful term the apostle applies to Christ’s death to the entire sin nature.
There is no sin nature without the male phallus because it is his phallus that is the instrument that passes down the old sin nature to both the male and female.
COL 2:11 - “the removal of the flesh” = “cutting away” or divestment of the flesh.
One of the meanings behind circumcision is that fact that it was a ritual which was related to Abraham’s spiritual growth.
Under the principle of the uniqueness of the Church-age, our spiritual circumcision is based upon the fact that we do not have to wait to become a mature believer like Abraham did, because we are in union with Christ and we share in His circumcision.