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  • Writer's pictureSt. John's Lutheran

Who is the "Seed"?

Romans 4:9-12 New International Version

9 Is this blessedness only for the circumcised, or also for the uncircumcised? We have been saying that Abraham’s faith was credited to him as righteousness. 10 Under what circumstances was it credited? Was it after he was circumcised, or before? It was not after, but before! 11 And he received circumcision as a sign, a seal of the righteousness that he had by faith while he was still uncircumcised. So then, he is the father of all who believe but have not been circumcised, in order that righteousness might be credited to them. 12 And he is then also the father of the circumcised who not only are circumcised but who also follow in the footsteps of the faith that our father Abraham had before he was circumcised.

Tuesday - November 9

Circumcision is not something we spend time thinking about. For the Jewish people, especially in the Apostle Paul’s day, it was crucial to their identity as God’s chosen people. The custom goes all the way back to Abram in Genesis 17. That passage is the third time that God reaffirms the promise that He made to Abram. On that third time God also changed Abram’s name to Abraham and commanded Abraham to be circumcised along with his whole family. But, as Paul clearly points out in Romans 4, Abraham got the promise years before the command of circumcision and his faith was counted as righteousness years before, too! (See Gen. 15:6). So, who is Abraham really the father of? All people of faith in God’s promises! Specifically, faith in God’s promise that Abraham’s “seed” (singular) would bless all the nations of the world (that includes you). Guess who that “seed” is?!

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