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This is My covenant, which ye shall keep, between Me and you and thy seed after thee; Every man child among you shall be circumcised.
And ye shall circumcise the flesh of your foreskin; and it shall be a token of the covenant betwixt me and you.
He that is born in thy house, and he that is bought with thy money, must needs be circumcised: and my covenant shall be in your flesh for an everlasting covenant.
And the uncircumcised man child whose flesh of his foreskin is not circumcised, that soul shall be cut off from his people; he hath broken My covenant.

-Genesis 17:10-11;13-14

 

To argue that if Genesis 17 remains true, then the church should still circumcise and not baptize, and should do so only for male and not female children, is also incorrect logic. All Christian denominations agree that the bloodshedding forms of the sacraments -i.e., circumcision and Passover -foreshadowed Christ's death and were changed into non-bloody forms after His death. In the Old Testament Jewish nation and culture, women were included, but only by way of male representation (this was true not only in church life, but also in the civil sphere, e.g., when registering land, lineages, or even counting numbers of people, only the names or numbers of males were listed). In the New Testament Roman culture, women were included individually, rather than only by male representation. The mark of baptism was also administered individually to all male or female. To argue that a change in form requires a change in principle is faulty reasoning. The purpose and meaning of God's everlasting covenant remained the same, but its form was changed. (This is examined in more detail in Reason Number 6 dealing with the four forms of administration of God's covenant and church.)

5. Baptism replaces circumcision as the sign of God's covenant, therefore, baptism, like circumcision, must include children as well as adult believers. After the full price of blood has been paid by the King of His Church, the bloodshedding forms of both sacraments required non-bloody signs. Passover was replaced by the Lord's Supper, and circumcision by baptism. While the form of administration required this change, the meaning and purpose of both remained the same. God's Word confirms the truth that New Testament baptism replaces Old Testament circumcision in the following ways:

    a. Both rites are signs and seals of God's covenant -For the Baptist to maintain that circumcision was not a sacrament because it lacked sacramental significance, distorts Scripture. Paul clearly states that circumcision was a sign and seal of God's grace -the very definition of a sacrament. "And he (Abraham) received the sign of circumcision, a seal of the righteousness of faith" (Romans 4:11a).

    b. The essence of both rites portray the same spiritual, cleansing truths -For the Baptist to argue that circumcision pertained only to the external benefits of natural Israel and physical Canaan,


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