Question 253

By: Robert Serreyn

Question? What does Colossians 2:11 mean?

(Colossians 2:11) In whom also ye are circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, in putting off the body of the sins of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ.


In the Old Testament circumcision meant IDENTIFICATION. When the Jews CIRCUMCISED their infants (Commanded by God) they were IDENTIFYING themselves of being of the Jewish flesh and one of God’s chosen people(as a nation, not salvation).

(Genesis 17:9 – 13) And God said unto Abraham, Thou shalt keep my covenant therefore, thou, and thy seed after thee in their generations. (10) This is my covenant, which ye shall keep, between me and you and thy seed after thee; Every man child among you shall be circumcised. (11) And ye shall circumcise the flesh of your foreskin; and it shall be a token of the covenant betwixt me and you. (12) And he that is eight days old shall be circumcised among you, every man child in your generations, he that is born in the house, or bought with money of any stranger, which is not of thy seed. (13) He that is born in thy house, and he that is bought with thy money, must needs be circumcised: and my covenant shall be in your flesh for an everlasting covenant.

To DISOBEY this COMMAND from God meant DEATH.

(Genesis 17:14) And the uncircumcised man child whose flesh of his foreskin is not circumcised, that soul shall be cut off from his people; he hath broken my covenant.

In Colossians 2:11 the Apostle Paul was using the Old Testament EXAMPLE of circumcision to teach a spiritual truth that JUST LIKE the Jews then CIRCUMCISED themselvs and their infants to be IDENTIFIED as God’s people, We BY FAITH ALONE in Christ are IDENTIFIED (Circumcised) as a Child Of God.

(1 Corinthians 10:11) Now all these things happened unto them for ensamples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come.

The Breakdown of Colossians 2:11:

– In Whom:
Jesus Christ.

(John 14:6) Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.

(Acts 4:12) Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.

– Also ye are circumcised:
Saved by Faith Alone In Christ.

(Ephesians 2:8,9) For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: (9) Not of works, lest any man should boast.

– With the circumcision made without hands: Not By Works.

(Titus 3:5) Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost.

– In putting offr the body of the sins of the flesh:
At the moment of belief in the Death, Burial, Resurrection of Christ alone ALL SINS are forgiven and Forgotten.

(Psalms 103:12) As far as the east is from the west, so far hath he removed our transgressions from us.

(2 Corinthians 5:17) Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.

– By the circumcision of Christ:
The Crucifixion, and the Death, Burial, and Resurrection Of Jesus Christ.

(1 Corinthians 15:3, 4) For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; (4) And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures.

(1 Peter 2:24) Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed.

In Conclusion:

To help understand easier Colossians 2:11, it can be read as follows…

THROUGH Jesus Christ (In Whom) you are SAVED (circumcised = IDENTIFIED), NOT BY WORKS. At the moment of belief ALL SINS (past present and future) are forgiven and forgotten by the Crucifixtion(circumcision) and Death, Burial and Resurrection of Jesus Christ.

The MOST IMPORTANT thing to know IS Jesus Christ as savior, just simply believe that Jesus Christ went to the cross and DIED and shed his blood, was BURIED and three days later RESURRECTED from the dead to pay for your sins.

-Christ DIED for you – Romans 5:8

-Christ PAID your sins in full – 2 Corinthians 5:21,1 Peter 2:24

-BELIEVE (Trust In Completely) in Christ ALONE as the complete payment of sin for salvation – John 3:16, Acts 16:31, Ephesians 2:8,9

“For the wages(payment) of sin is death (eternal torment in hell); but the GIFT(salvation) of God is eternal life THROUGH Jesus Christ our Lord”. Romans 6:23