On the eighth day, when it was time to circumcise the child, he was named Jesus, the name the angel had given him before he was conceived. – Lk. 2:21 NIV
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The gift of God to the world had been born in a manger to earthly parents, Joseph and Mary and just as prescribed by the laws of God, he was to be circumcised on the eighth day. This was not about tradition of the Jews but about the law of God, that every male child in their household must be circumcised on the eighth day whether a direct child or one just living in the same household with them or the child of a slave – Gen. 17:12-14. The importance of this act is such that any male child who does not undergo this process will be cut off from God’s people.
The act of circumcision, although a physical act that is performed by all, whether believers or not, has deep spiritual significance before God than just the physical process that is involved. When done in the name of the Lord, it is a mark that separates male children belonging to the Lord from other male children. The Almighty God says any male for whom circumcision is not carried out will be cut off from his people. Some theologians have argued that, not obeying this instruction of the Lord was what was going to cost Moses his life but for the quick intervention of his wife, Ziporah. That mark saved Moses from death. God desired that mark to be on his people to separate them for himself and be able to identify them at all times.
Although the physical mark in the days of Moses was very important as it was the identifier, the coming of Jesus Christ, his death, resurrection and ascension to heaven brought a new marker with which the Lord identifies His people. This is the Holy Spirit. This new marker became available to all people just like the old marker, whether a Jew or non Jew, as long as the individual belongs to the household of God. To belong to the household of God is to have accepted Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior and have undergone the process of being born again. Whereas the blood of the individual needing the old marker will be shed during the process that leads to the acquisition of the old marker, the acquisition of the new marker was through a blood that has already been shed and will only be shed once. All that whoever wants to have the marker need do is to accept the one whose blood was shed and the marker will be given instantly – Acts 2:38-39.
Whereas the marker in the old testament left a physical scar, this new marker leaves a spiritual identifier that protects from all principalities and powers and similar negative forces operating in this world. The Bible describes the marker as follows:
- It is a seal that Jesus Christ placed on all those who have accepted him as Lord and Savior – 2Cor. 1:22. A seal is usually placed at the end of a set of a communication, to authenticate its validity. It is a proof that whatever is contained therein has the approval of the one with authority and for every person under the influence of this authority, they are duty bound to respect every content of that communication. Jesus Christ took charge of the entire world system when he died, was buried and rose – Eph. 4:7-20; Psa. 68:18. He took prisoners in captive and made a public spectacle of the devil and his angels – Col. 2:13-15. In the process, he brought gifts to all those who accept him as Lord and Saviour by sending the Holy Spirit after his departure, to all that believe in him – Jn. 14:14-21; Acts 2:38-39.
- It is a deposit guaranteeing the inheritance of all those who have accepted Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior until that day when the people of God will be harvested – Eph. 1:13-14. There is indeed an inheritance that comes with accepting Christ one of which is the conferment of the status of a righteous person – Isa. 54:17; Rom. 1:17; 3:21. This is a righteousness that is not because of perfection of the person but because of the grace that comes with being associated with Jesus Christ.
This was what gave the Apostle Paul the audacity to rebuke every spirit that intended to affect him negatively warding them off with this mark that Jesus Christ, by grace had provided and which he was sure he bore – Gal. 6:17. It was not going to be possible for anyone to successfully create a problem for such a person as such was enjoying the cover that the mark provides.
Do you have the mark? If yes, then you have no need to fear anything, either in this world or in the world to come. However, if you do not have it, then you are living dangerously as it may be possible for you to maneuver your way in this realm but you can be sure that you cannot avoid pain and regrets in eternity. Save your self from eternal damnation and seek to have his mark so that he can identity you and separate you to himself on that day when he comes to collect his people. May you be among the elect of God on that day in Jesus name. Amen.