SermonSpiritual Circumcision
An all-creatures Bible Message

Spiritual Circumcision
 
A Sermon Delivered to
The Compassion Internet Church
 
25 February 2018
 
Frank L. Hoffman, Pastor

Scripture References

Genesis 17:15-27
Psalm 22:22-31

Spiritual circumcision is one in which all hardness is removed from our heart and soul and we are filled with Godís heavenly will and unconditional love.
 
Circumcision of the flesh only serves as a reminder to men of the covenant God made with them, but does not necessarily mean that they are following Godís heavenly will.
 
Spiritual circumcision should occur in both men and women, particularly when they are born again, but unfortunately most people who claim to be born again still retain their hardness of heart, particularly when it applies to animals and the environment, but most often toward animals.
 
There are even clergy who retain their hardness of heart and soul to such an extent that they only selectively care about their fellow human beings, and even encourage killing animals for sport.
 
As we discussed last week, true love includes animals; in fact, true love only is found in people who have allowed themselves to be spiritually circumcised, and these peacemaking children of God are evident to everyone around them for they do everything in their power to help free the whole of creation from its present corruption.
 
In Genesis 17:15-27, we are told about circumcision of the flesh, but if we look closely, we will also see some spiritual circumcisionÖ

15. Then God said to Abraham, "As for Sarai your wife, you shall not call her name Sarai, but Sarah shall be her name.

In those days God spoke directly to Abraham, but Abraham still carried doubts in his mind and soul.
 
God changed Saraiís name, which means Godís princess, to Sarah, which means princess of all, because her position in the Hebrew community had changed, and perhaps because she was on a path leading to spiritual circumcision.

16. And I will bless her, and indeed I will give you a son by her. Then I will bless her, and she shall be a mother of nations; kings of peoples shall come from her."
 
17. Then Abraham fell on his face and laughed, and said in his heart, "Will a child be born to a man one hundred years old? And will Sarah, who is ninety years old, bear a child?"

Even though Abraham believes in God and had been following Him for many years, he doesnít fully believe God or trust in Him, and as we are told elsewhere, he is still sacrificing animals, a practice he brought with him from Babylon.

18. And Abraham said to God, "Oh that Ishmael might live before Thee!"

About 10 years before this, God had made a promise to Abraham to make him a father of many people, but Abraham didnít fully trust God to bring this about through Sarah, so he had an adulterous affair with Sarahís maid, Hagar, Ishmaelís mother.
 
Now Abraham is trying to bargain with God to accept his previous disobedience and have His blessing pass through Ishmael, but God rejects Abrahamís plea.

19. But God said, "No, but Sarah your wife shall bear you a son, and you shall call his name Isaac; and I will establish My covenant with him for an everlasting covenant for his descendants after him.

God just allowed Abraham to stew in his own distrust for ten years before restating His original intent, but since Ishmael had nothing to do with Abrahamís action, He makes a covenant with him, too.  

20. And as for Ishmael, I have heard you; behold, I will bless him, and will make him fruitful, and will multiply him exceedingly. He shall become the father of twelve princes, and I will make him a great nation.

Unfortunately, in the Middle East, the descendants of Ismael and the descendants of Isaac have been feuding with each other to this very day.

21. But My covenant I will establish with Isaac, whom Sarah will bear to you at this season next year."
 
22. And when He finished talking with him, God went up from Abraham.

God was firm; the covenant He had established with Abraham was to pass through Sarah to Isaac.

23. Then Abraham took Ishmael his son, and all the servants who were born in his house and all who were bought with his money, every male among the men of Abraham's household, and circumcised the flesh of their foreskin in the very same day, as God had said to him.

This physical circumcision, which was carried out in pain, and was to be a reminder several times a day, was mostly forgotten, because it had no real spiritual component to change them.

24. Now Abraham was ninety-nine years old when he was circumcised in the flesh of his foreskin.
 
25. And Ishmael his son was thirteen years old when he was circumcised in the flesh of his foreskin.
 
26. In the very same day Abraham was circumcised, and Ishmael his son.
 
27. And all the men of his household, who were born in the house or bought with money from a foreigner, were circumcised with him.
NASB

Without a spiritual circumcision to remove all the hardness in the human heart and soul, we (men and women) can never be true peacemaking children of God.
 
Letís now take a look at Psalm 22:22-31, and think about it in terms of how we view it with and without spiritual circumcision,

22. I will tell of Thy name to my brethren;
In the midst of the assembly I will praise Thee.

Anyone can call themselves a Jew or a Christian and repeat some religious doctrine and say, ďpraise the LordĒ, or ďGod is goodĒ, but without a spiritual component that makes what we say personal to us, it is less likely to be believed.
 
We are to be living examples of the heavenly will of God here on earth as it is in heaven, and we can only do this if we have had a spiritual circumcision to remove all hardness from our heart and soul.

23. You who fear the LORD, praise Him;
All you descendants of Jacob, glorify Him,
And stand in awe of Him, all you descendants of Israel.

God changed Jacobís name to Israel, and every time we see the names Jacob and Israel used in a passage in this manner, we see the underlying message that the writer presented was that the descendants of Jacob were the deceivers of both themselves and God for they really didnít follow the Lord their God, but those who are descendants of Israel are the ones who wrestled with God about what He really desired in their lives.

24. For He has not despised nor abhorred the affliction of the afflicted;
Neither has He hidden His face from him;
But when he cried to Him for help, He heard.

Godís love is unconditional; He loves and hears everyone, even sinners and deceivers, and He always responds to those who are spiritually circumcised in heart and soul, for they shall see the kingdom of God.

25. From Thee comes my praise in the great assembly;
I shall pay my vows before those who fear Him.

Our praise should always come from the depths of our heart and soul; in fact, it is probably best to praise God in private where no one sees us, for they will see our praise in the way we live before others as an example of Godís heavenly will here on earth.
 
Furthermore, our praise and offerings should always be free will, and not just in the assembly of others where it could be seen as showing off.

26. The afflicted shall eat and be satisfied;
Those who seek Him will praise the LORD.
Let your heart live forever!

This is the way we should be.

27. All the ends of the earth will remember and turn to the LORD,
And all the families of the nations will worship before Thee.

This can happen when enough of us who are spiritually circumcised and truly live in the heavenly will of God here on earth as it is in heaven; for when we do this, then it can lead others to repent and seek to become peacemaking children of God.

28. For the kingdom is the Lord's,
And He rules over the nations.

The unfortunate problem is that most people donít seem to believe this, but rather falsely believe that they are in control.

29. All the prosperous of the earth will eat and worship,
All those who go down to the dust will bow before Him,
Even he who cannot keep his soul alive.

These are the repentant ones.

30. Posterity will serve Him;
It will be told of the LORD to the coming generation.

Every time we hear of someone becoming vegan, we rejoice because they have come to their senses and have decided to help free creation from its present corruption instead of further corrupting it.

31. They will come and will declare His righteousness
To a people who will be born, that He has performed it.
NASB

This is the hope of every child of God who is living in the world; this is what happens when we live in the heavenly will of God here on earth as it is in heaven.
 
This is what happens when we allow ourselves to be spiritually circumcised.
 
Amen.

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