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Galatians 6:12 – Window dressing

02-11-2022 - Posted by Hans

Whoever are wanting to put on a fair face in the flesh, these are compelling you to circumcise only that they may not be persecuted for the cross of Christ Jesus.

A telling contrast. On the one hand, there is Paul, who writes down his message with little elegance in huge letters. On the other hand, there are the Judaizers who above all want to “put on a fair face in the flesh”. For the clean look. Judaism wanted to show that believers from the nations also conform to religious customs. The compulsion will have consisted in the message that every (male) child of Abraham should be circumcised. Later the teaching was developed that water baptism would have been replaced by circumcision. But the religious compulsion has remained the same.

That these circumcision-enforcers want to pretend to be religious had (and has!) only one motive: “not to be persecuted for the cross of Christ”. Insofar as one speaks of the cross, one only pays lip service to it, since the cross of Christ is all- sufficient (Gal.2:21). It’s finished! Nothing of man. Any message that demands that man must do or refrain from doing something to be just before God is religion and by definition is at odds with the truth “of the cross of Christ”.