Circumcision and Name of Jesus
“The name ‘Jesus’ is food, light, medicine. You have this medicine for yourself, O my soul, and it lies concealed in the capsule of this word, which certainly is Jesus, the bringer of salvation.”
— St. Bernard, Sermon de coena Domini, quoted by Blessed Johann Gerhard in On Christ (CPH 2009) p. 12.
Already on the eighth day of Jeuss’ life, His destiny of atonement is revealed in His name and in is circumcision. At that moment, His blood is first shed and Jesus receives the name given to Him by the angel: “You shall call His name Jesus, for He will save His people from their sins” (Matthew 1:21). In the circumcision of Jesus, all people are circumcised once and for all, because He represents all humanity. In the Old Testament, for the believers who looked to Gods promoise to be fulfilled in the Messiah, the benefits of circumcision included the forgiveness of sins, justification, and incorporation into the peole of God. In the New Testmen, St. Paul speaks of its counterpart, Holy Batism, as a “circumcision made without hands” and as “the circumcision of Christ” (Colossians 2:11).
Lord God, You made Your beloved Son, our Savior, subject to the Law and caused Him to shed His blood on our behalf. Grant us the true circumcision of the Spirit that our hearts may be made pure from all sins; through Jesus Christ, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.
Source: The Treasury of Daily Prayer, p. 1078.