Today, the 1st January, is the feast of the circumcision of Jesus. This is a reminder to us that Jesus was born a Jew, grew up a Jew, lived as a Jew and seems to have celebrated the Jewish feasts throughout his life. This is a reminder that He was a real person, living in a particular street in Nazareth. He lived a sinless life – at the start of His ministry being commended by God for doing so: note that ‘This is my Son in whom I am well pleased’ is not, despite the fact you heard it said from the pulpit, a reflection of God’s unmerited enthusiasm for His Son. He was tempted like us, and overcame. The reply ‘That’s because He’s God’, is heretical; it is necessary for Jesus to be as subject to temptation and not protected, being as we are, for Him to reverse the curse of Adam.
It’s a shame that as a feast day its location in the midst of the Christmas season, and on the day when most of us are dealing with the consequences of the New Year’s Eve party, makes us forget it. So I thought I’d mention it today!