In God’s Guidance to Get Baptized I wrote about how I grew up with the idea that baptism was the sign of the New Covenant. This idea was supported by the teaching that baptism replaced circumcision. Circumcision was the Jewish sign of the covenant between God and the descendants of Abraham. However, there is no reference in the New Testament to baptism as the sign of the New Covenant. Still, there is a relation between baptism and circumcision and it is very strong!
For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form, and in Christ you have been brought to fullness. He is the head over every power and authority. In him you were also circumcised with a circumcision not performed by human hands. Your whole self ruled by the flesh was put off when you were circumcised by Christ, having been buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him through your faith in the working of God, who raised him from the dead. When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made you alive with Christ. ~ Colossians 2,9-13 ~
In Colossians 2,9-13 we can read that we are circumcised in Christ Jesus through our baptism in him. What do circumcision and baptism have in common? I was inspired about this through a documentary of a Jewish hospital in Israel. It told about the birth of a Jewish boy and his circumcision after eight days. As usual, the foreskin was buried in the garden of the hospital. The father of the child, who buried the foreskin, said that he would not come back to visit this place. He said that some families do, but to him this foreskin was just dead and he didn’t consider it to be (part) of his son anymore.
This is really powerful! Baptism does the same. It does not circumcise our foreskin, but it buries our old life. We can consider our old life, with all it sin and pain, not to be part of us anymore. That is why baptism is so important. We can try our very best to break with sin, but sin will be stronger than us. However, if we bury our old life in baptism, the bond with sin is broken and it has no power over us anymore. At least, only if we do not give us to sin anymore. We have to realize that we have a choice and that we do not have to sin anymore when we are born again. This means hope. We do not have to sin anymore, because we are set free through baptism. Besides, we received the Holy Spirit to overrule the desires of the flesh. Isn’t it very Good News?!
God bless you,
Founder of Experience Jesus