I imagine Paul sent a bit of a shockwave when he wrote this to the church at Rome:
…no one is a Jew who is merely one outwardly, nor is circumcision outward and physical. But a Jew is one inwardly, and circumcision is a matter of the heart, by the Spirit, not by the letter. His praise is not from man but from God. Romans 2: 28-29
Most Jews likely thought it sufficient to be born into a Jewish family and to receive circumcision. But Paul says faith is a matter of the heart.
Same is true today. The Christian faith isn’t inherited. It’s a matter of the heart.
And the heart that counts isn’t one WE can change, but the one God changes. As Ezekiel and Moses prophesied:
And I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you. And I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. Ezekiel 36: 26
And the Lord your God will circumcise your heart and the heart of your offspring, so that you will love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul, that you may live. Deuteronomy 30: 6
True faith isn’t an outward thing, but derives from a changed heart – and moves from the inside out.
I love how Scripture all holds together!
Dear Lord: Thank you for giving me a new heart. Please help me to more consistently live like it’s there. Amen