Colossians 2:12-13

By Bill McKeever and Eric Johnson

Colossians 2:12–13 says, “Buried with him in baptism, wherein also ye are risen with him through the faith of the operation of God, who hath raised him from the dead. And you, being dead in your sins and the uncircumcision of your flesh, hath he quickened together with him, having forgiven you all trespasses.”

The context of this passage deals with the physical act of circumcision that took place during the Old Testament times. It is significant that the New Testament tends to depreciate the external act of circumcision. It argues that circumcision is to be replaced, not by another external act (e.g., baptism) but by an internal act of the heart. Paul points out that Old Testament circumcision was an outward formality denoting the Judaic faith, but Romans 2:29 says the true Jew “is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the spirit, and not in the letter; whose praise is not of men, but of God.” The New Covenant fulfilled the framework of circumcision and the Law.

See more on Acts 2:38 and 1 Peter 3:21.