Who performed circumcision in the OT?

Discussion in 'OT Historical Books' started by chrisleeberk, May 28, 2017.

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  1. chrisleeberk

    chrisleeberk Puritan Board Freshman

    PB Folks,
    I have been thinking through this question: Who performed the act of circumcision in the OT? Was it the father? Was it the priest?

    I ask because I have seen some reformed people post a video in which the father is baptizing his baby daughter. So, the logic goes: if the father circumcised the baby in the OT, and we know that circumcision is replaced with baptism, then it follows that the father can also baptize the baby. No need for a minister to do it.
    From this particular line of reasoning, it hinges upon whether or not the father circumcised his baby.

    Now, I have read that the Great Commission helps us to understand Jesus was giving very specific commands to his disciples (teach and baptize), within the context of their authority, and those disciples then pass down their ministerial authority as they are appointing elders/ministers to churches.. So, if that line of reasoning holds (that line of authority involving the ability to baptize) then even if the father was the one who actually performed circumcision in the OT, that would be irrelevant because of redemptive historical progression.

    Of course, this issue would be much easier (who circumcised and therefore, who can baptize) if it were actually the case if the priest performed the circumcision.
  2. Contra_Mundum

    Contra_Mundum Pilgrim, Alien, Stranger Staff Member

    Luke 1:59-61, "So it was, on the eighth day that they came to circumcise the child, and they would have called him by the name of his father, Zacharias. His mother answered and said, 'No; he shall be called John.' But they said to her...:

    Who are "they?" They are coming to circumcise, and they are assuming things that the parents (who are other-than-they) think otherwise.

    Circumcision was an ecclesial/religious function, not a parental act. Josh.5:7, "Joshua circumcised their sons." It was a community act, and those who did this service were appointed by God. Not a parent's job.

    Father Abraham? He was the mediator of his generation. Zipporah? She had to do something, because the proper mediator Moses failed in his duty. Exceptions merely prove a rule.
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