Let me place my Disclaimer out there right now- this message is mostly just my opinion. You can disagree, or agree, and in either case, if you have biblical justification for your opinion, please let me know.
If you prefer to watch me opine in a video, click on this link: Watch the video.
OK, Shaul tells the Galatians (Galatians 3:29) that if they are in Messiah, then they are also heirs of Abraham. This is his conclusion from his previous explanation about how there is no longer slave or free, Gentile or Jew, but only one type of person when we accept Yeshua as our Messiah because from that point forward, we are all one in the body of the Messiah.
But there is a difference between an adopted child and a blood relative. It doesn’t matter on a spiritual level, but it does on a physical one.
I am not an adopted son of Abraham because I am Jewish, through and through, both sides, DNA proven. In fact, I even have the Levitical allele, so I know I am a Levite.
(If you’re not familiar with this, years ago they studied the DNA of Jews whose last name was any form of Levi or Cohen, and matched that to other Jewish DNA samples, and found there is a definitive difference between the DNA of Jewish males who have a Levitical sounding last name and those who do not.)
The issue I have is with the traditional Christian teaching, which has been promulgated throughout the centuries, that adopted children of Abraham are entitled to all the promises God made to him but are not subject to the Torah because they are “in Christ” and, as such, not under the law but under Grace.
Oh, how I hate that saying- “not under the law but under Grace”- because it has led so many thousands upon thousands of people away from the narrow gate by making them think they can do whatever they always did and be saved.
Don’t you know? Grace is not exception from obeying the law, but the opportunity to be forgiven when we disobey the law!
Does an adopted child in a family get to ignore the rules that the natural born children are subject to following?
I don’t think so!
So, what makes Christians who claim to be children of Abraham think they can ignore the Torah, which was given by God to the children of Abraham to learn and live and teach to the world as God’s chosen nation of priests? (Exodus 19:6) And what do priests do? They teach you how to worship! That’s why God gave the children of Abraham the Torah- not just for them, but for them to learn, live, and bring to the world so that everyone can be saved.
The only real difference between an adopted child of Abraham and one that is natural born is a physical one, dealing with circumcision (as Shaul explained to the Galatians and also mentioned, as I recall, to the Romans), and circumcision is not needed in order to be saved. If an adopted child wants to undergo that, fine- so long as it is not done to be “correct”, i.e., to earn the right to say they are under the covenant. That is the wrong reason, as Shaul explained to the Galatians.
Think about it…do you really have to be circumcised to be under the same covenant God made with Abraham?
My opinion is that the Abrahamic Covenant is not as important to a person’s relationship with God as the Mosaic Covenant is. Why not? Well, because Abraham was only required to do B’rit Milah, whereas Moses was given God’s instructions for the way to live our lives: how to worship him and how to treat each other.
If you ask me, any male Gentile who is not circumcised, but wants to live as Yeshua (Jesus) really did live, to do as he really did do, will not have to buy a large package of Birds Eye Frozen Peas (a real lifesaver after having procedures done down there) but just obey the Torah as best as he can.
Do you know what they call a Jewish baby who isn’t circumcised? A girl!
Do all females who accept Yeshua as their messiah have to undergo the female type of circumcision (the kind that is done to certain Muslim women) in order to be an adopted child of Abraham?
Of course not! But they are just as “saved” as the men are.
As Shaul pointed out, Abraham was NOT circumcised when God called him out of the pagan lifestyle he had been living. God accepted Abraham as a righteous person based on his faith and, for the record, his obedience, as well. Read Genesis 26:4-5, which is where God renewed the promise he made to Abraham with Isaac and stated that Abraham obeyed all that God told him to do.
Abraham was considered righteous not just because he was faithful, but because he proved his faith through obedience, which many centuries later was confirmed by the brother of the Messiah (James 2:17).
So, there you have it- male blood descendants of Abraham have the obligation to undergo B’rit Milah when they are 8 days old (good thing it’s at 8 days, because if they asked me when I was 35, I would seriously have to think about it!), but Gentile males who accept Yeshua as their Messiah and want to be adopted children of Abraham do not have to be circumcised in their flesh, only in their heart.
And, for the record, being circumcised in your flesh, alone, doesn’t save you.
There is a difference between blood descendants of Abraham and adopted children, but that isn’t what is going to make a difference in your salvation. The Abrahamic Covenant doesn’t provide you what you need to be saved, but the Mosaic Covenant does.
Thank you for being here and please subscribe to this ministry on my website and my YouTube channel. Buy my books, share these messages with everyone you know, and join my Facebook group called “Just God’s Word” (but you must agree to the rules to join).
And remember… I always welcome your comments.
That’s it for this week, so l’hitraot and (an early) Shabbat Shalom!