For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision has any value. The only thing that counts is faith expressing itself through love.
For hundreds of years, hundreds, the Jews were set apart from the world with the outward sign of circumcision. Circumcision was the evidence of their all-in commitment to an unseen God. It was their “mark” – their permanent tattoo, their badge of endured pain. They were the Brotherhood of the Mutilated and proud of it – bound together with the proof to say: “We are the chosen ones.”
And then here comes Paul- preaching Jesus.
and preaching freedom.
Freedom to band with a whole new world of homeys
Freedom to love as we’ve been loved.
Freedom bought by the One who bled for us.
This is a new and different circumcision – cut from the fiber of the heart –
surgery performed by the Great Physician himself
And, now, only faith expressed in Love counts.
… There is nothing else that matters.
I am free in Jesus.
I am not required to be anything other than who he made me to be in Him.
If my words and actions do not reflect the profound privilege and responsibility of loving others like He does…
if they do not express the work of his hands …
if they do not mirror his grace and mercy as proof of his surgery on my heart…
… then I am merely a church-going, ritual-gonging, and most-irritating cymbal
clashing in the wind of a lot of hot air.
You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh; rather, serve one another humbly in love. For the entire law is fulfilled in keeping this one command: “Love your neighbor as yourself.”
Lord, help me always to follow your law of love. Keep me from empty words not backed in love with action. Love is a verb. Help me with this responsibility to LOVE people like you would. Period.
’cause worship can look different too!