but even titus, who was with me, was not forced to be circumcised, though he was a greek. [galatians 2:3]


God is serious about covenants.


God commanded abraham to circumcise every male who was in community as a sign of the covenant.

[9] and God said to abraham, “as for you, you shall keep my covenant, you and your offspring after you throughout their generations. [10] this is my covenant, which you shall keep, between me and you and your offspring after you: every male among you shall be circumcised. [11] you shall be circumcised in the flesh of your foreskins, and it shall be a sign of the covenant between me and you. [genesis 17:9-11]


three things about biblical covenants enacted by God:

1) a covenant is a solemn binding agreement that enacts a relationship. the word literally means “to cut” and all covenants were entered into by the cutting of flesh. usually an animal was cut in two and both parties would walk between the two halves of the animal and make a vow, “may what happen to this animal happen to me if i break this covenant.”

2) God’s final covenant would fulfill all his other covenants that he had made with man previously. (with noah: gen 8:20 / with abraham: gen 15:12, 17:10 / with david: 2 sam 7:16) his final covenant was made with us through Jesus and the cutting of his flesh as he hung on the cross for our sin.

3) all previous covenants were conditional but this final covenant in Christ was unconditional. it was based on God’s faithfulness, God’s mercy, and God’s work. we receive all God’s blessings and favor based on his faithfulness, mercy, and work. it is forever and cannot be broken. and ultimately, it gives us relationship with God.


circumcision was a sign of the temporary covenant. the cutting of flesh was a reminder of the cost to have relationship. it was a reminder of what it was would do in us – cut out our flesh, our old lives. but it did not and could not give us relationship with God. it was a sign of relationship, it could never earn us relationship.

the judiaizers did not believe in the true gospel. before God’s covenant with man in Jesus, they believed man was made right with God to be with God by what we did – and circumcision was one of the things we had to do to be “right with God.” after the resurrection, their core belief did not change: iwhat we did that made us right with God. it was Jesus + circumcision. but we are so sin-full, our works could and never will make us right with God. and, we know this. deep in our heart – we know.

the gospel of Jesus Christ declared a new and glorious message: Jesus made us right with God so we could be with God. when we trust our soul to this truth, to the person and work of Jesus, we are made right with God. to believe we can do a work that makes us right is not a small miss and perverts the covenant of God with us in Christ, calls God a liar, and defames the very name and death of Jesus.


Jesus is serious about his covenant with us in Christ.




makes us right with God

so we can be with God.


two questions:

1) have you trusted your soul to the person and work of Jesus to make you right with God? relationship with him is yours in Christ! trust him now. cry out, “God, i trust my soul to Jesus and his work. i turn from my efforts and work. i trust Jesus alone.”

2) if you have trusted Jesus with your soul – how will your life declare praise and worship to your King? worship him, he is worthy! enjoy this day! worship your King. right now worship! all day worship! he is worthy!


~ john ryan