Faith from the Heart…
It’s not about what’s on the outside; it’s about what’s on the inside that counts:
“One is not a Jew outwardly. True circumcision is not outward, in the flesh. Rather, one is a Jew inwardly, and circumcision is of the heart, in the spirit, not the letter; his praise is not from human beings but from God.” -Romans 2:28-29 NAB
Before we begin to understand today’s verse, we must first understand how “circumcision” applies today. For us, Baptism has replaced Old Testament circumcision, at least the ritualized part of it. We get a picture of it in Colossians 2:11-12:
“In him you were also circumcised with a circumcision not administered by hand, by stripping off the carnal body, with the circumcision of Christ. You were buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him through faith in the power of God, who raised him from the dead.” -Colossians 2:11-12, NAB
With that understanding in mind, we can take another look at Romans 2:28-29, but with Baptism in mind instead.
Our Baptism is more than an outward symbol of our faith. It is more than water being poured over our head. Truly, Baptism affects who we are on the inside, spiritually. Then, as we go through Confirmation, we affirm our Baptism once again, inwardly. At Confirmation, we are publicly sharing outwardly what we feel inwardly.
The real message here is that our faith is a personal matter between us and God. Our faith does not depend on the applause from others. We should not show our faith to the world to receive praise for that faith. Instead, we should only seek to please God with the works of our faith.
It’s very important to live our faith outwardly and be a shining example to the world around us, but, more importantly, it is what is in our hearts that matters.