"Mutilators of the Flesh" Philiappians 3:2-3 - Mothering Forums

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Old 12-09-2007, 01:06 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Philippians 3: 2-3

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2Watch out for those dogs, those men who do evil, those mutilators of the flesh. 3For it is we who are the circumcision, we who worship by the Spirit of God, who glory in Christ Jesus, and who put no confidence in the flesh...
To me, this is obvious. Paul is calling circumcisers "mutilators of the flesh".

Someone has told me this is WRONG and gave me this link.


Disclaimer: I in NO way support circumcision!!!

The Christian Mama who gave me the link agrees that circumcision is not necessary for salvation. But she justifies it every other way.

I'm hoping for feedback about whats said in that link from you lovely MDC members.
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Old 12-09-2007, 03:12 AM
 
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Not only did he (Paul) call people (in the text "Judaizers" as well as "Jews") dogs, but also mutilators, and men who do evil.

I don't see either the orig text nor the commentary to be supporting circumcision for C'ians.

But maybe I didn't read closely enough on account of being offended by the dogs and evil-doers portion.
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Old 12-09-2007, 03:46 AM
 
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Well, about what was said in the link, it did call all the Jew stuff "irksome."



Say "irksome" ten times fast.










Happy Khanuka.










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Old 12-09-2007, 12:08 PM
 
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It's hard to "read" the real meaning of this without being able to read it in the original language and catch all the nuances- and even then it can be hard to know what if there were subtle differences in meaning at the time it was written. Maybe "mutilate" is simply a poor translation, and far stronger in tone than the author ever intended?

This also may have been taken out of context- perhaps "mutilators" referred to another group of people who used multiple tattoos or piercings or otherwise altered their bodies for "vanity"- it may not be referring to circumcision of the foreskin at all.

Or maybe it was written by an anti-Semite who did intend to call all Jews "mutilators." It's certainly been interpreted that way by some.

The bottom line, as I see it, is that Jews are commanded to have a Bris Milah for their sons, as a sign of the Covenant of Abraham. Non-Jews are not obligated to do so. Since most Christians don't hold themselves as being obligated in other areas of Torah- Kashrut, Shabbos (in the way that Orthodox Jews observe it), Passover, etc- I can see no reason that Bris Milah would be binding either.

Ruth, single mommy to Leah, 19, Hannah, 18 (commuting to college), and Jack, 13(homeschooled)
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Old 12-09-2007, 01:01 PM
 
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I agree with Ruthla's post. My understanding of that scripture wasn't that Paul was talking about Jews in general, but specific groups of people who were going around telling Christians they had to be circumsized. He was pretty pissed off about it, if you can't tell.

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The bottom line, as I see it, is that Jews are commanded to have a Bris Milah for their sons, as a sign of the Covenant of Abraham. Non-Jews are not obligated to do so. Since most Christians don't hold themselves as being obligated in other areas of Torah- Kashrut, Shabbos (in the way that Orthodox Jews observe it), Passover, etc- I can see no reason that Bris Milah would be binding either.
Exactly. There's absolutely no reason for Christians to circumsize.

Did the Christian mom you're talking about circumsize?
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Old 12-09-2007, 06:36 PM
 
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Okay, the gist I got from this is "Paul was a big anti-Semite and speaking out against circumcision was just one of the ways he was putting down Torah-observing Jews, not really a clear statement against circumcision itself."

Not much of an argument in my opinion.

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Old 12-09-2007, 10:11 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by CherryBomb View Post
Did the Christian mom you're talking about circumsize?

Yes she does. She believes this topic has NO eternal vaule and strongly suggested I drop it. That this issue is a PARENTS choice.

I explained that Rabbis do not except a secular circ (one perforned in hospitals) and a Brit Milah is not just a circumcision its a ritual with prayers. Just in case she was trying to mark her ds with the Old Covenant.
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Old 12-11-2007, 01:00 PM
 
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Originally Posted by fruitful womb View Post
Yes she does. She believes this topic has NO eternal vaule and strongly suggested I drop it. That this issue is a PARENTS choice.
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Old 12-13-2007, 11:37 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Ravin View Post
Okay, the gist I got from this is "Paul was a big anti-Semite and speaking out against circumcision was just one of the ways he was putting down Torah-observing Jews, not really a clear statement against circumcision itself."

Not much of an argument in my opinion.
Well actually Paul had quite an axe to grind against Jews and Judaism in particular, and this was only one of his many rants against it. I'm not saying that to delegitimize his particular argument against circumcision -- it's as Ruthla stated, there is no mitzva in this for nonJews -- I am just saying that it was one part of his wider polemic against Jews and Judaism in general; Paul's main argument was that converts to Christianity had no need to convert to Judaism and take on the mitzvos of Torah in order to become full Christians.

 "Now bid me run, and I will strive with things impossible." (William Shakespeare -- Julius Caesar)

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Old 12-14-2007, 12:10 AM
 
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Originally Posted by CherryBomb View Post
I agree with Ruthla's post. My understanding of that scripture wasn't that Paul was talking about Jews in general, but specific groups of people who were going around telling Christians they had to be circumsized. He was pretty pissed off about it, if you can't tell.

I think that gentile converts didn't need to get circumsized and Paul was mad at the idea that grown men would have to do that in order to become Christian.

I'm pretty sure that Paul also said that Christian converts need not be circumsized, as Nickarolaberry said.

And, as a Catholic, I have never questioned the Jewish people's convenant with God that says they ought to be circumsized. I don't question convenants with God. Same with Muslims and Halal meat. I don't put human restraints on God's Will and Power.

Kate: fumbling through the best years with W, L, F & V...newest arrival coming Jan '11
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