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  #1  
Old Feb 21, '12, 7:12 pm
nana123 nana123 is offline
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Default circumcision on 8th day

As part of a parish Bible study, the question came up as to why the 8th day was chosen for circumcision to be performed in the Jewish culture. What is significant about the 8th day?
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  #2  
Old Feb 21, '12, 8:40 pm
LaSainte LaSainte is offline
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Default Re: circumcision on 8th day

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Originally Posted by nana123 View Post
As part of a parish Bible study, the question came up as to why the 8th day was chosen for circumcision to be performed in the Jewish culture. What is significant about the 8th day?
Because on the 7th day, God rested. On the 8th day, you cut off a piece of your junk. Ok just kidding . I'd like to know the answer to this as well.

Also, at the presentation of Jesus in the temple, was this his circumcision day?
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  #3  
Old Feb 21, '12, 8:58 pm
Bezant Bezant is offline
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Default Re: circumcision on 8th day

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Originally Posted by nana123 View Post
As part of a parish Bible study, the question came up as to why the 8th day was chosen for circumcision to be performed in the Jewish culture. What is significant about the 8th day?
Well, the number 8 has a very special theme (there might be more) in Judaism, and I hope I shall explain this clearly.

To understand what number 8 means, we must understand 7. The number 7 represents a perfect completion or miracle worked by God--like the Sabbath, or the parting of the seas. They are signs for us to realize God's ultimate lordship over a world that often sees itself as the end of all things. But signs and wonders aren't enough to make that realization last. (After the parting of the sea, Israel praised God, but complained after arriving in the desert). It takes human cooperation for those signs to have any practical, lasting meaning. So the number 8 represents God's miracle fulfilled with human cooperation.

Assuming this theme, I imagine that circumcision on the 8th day represents the necessary cooperation between God and men through the covenant.

Here's another explanation:

(http://www.chabad.org/library/articl...rcumcision.htm)
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  #4  
Old Feb 22, '12, 5:35 pm
Joe Kelley Joe Kelley is offline
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Default Re: circumcision on 8th day

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Originally Posted by LaSainte View Post
..

Also, at the presentation of Jesus in the temple, was this his circumcision day?
No. The circumcision was on the eighth day Luke 2:21
Quote:
21* And at the end of eight days, when he was circumcised, he was called Jesus, the name given by the angel before he was conceived in the womb.
The presentation occurred 25 days later; 33 days after his birth. Luke 2:22
Quote:
22* And when the time came for their purification according to the law of Moses, they brought him up to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord
For the Law of Moses see Leviticus 12: 2-6
Quote:
2 "Say to the people of Israel, If a woman conceives, and bears a male child, then she shall be unclean seven days; as at the time of her menstruation, she shall be unclean. 3 And on the eighth day the flesh of his foreskin shall be circumcised. 4 Then she shall continue for thirty-three days in the blood of her purifying; she shall not touch any hallowed thing, nor come into the sanctuary, until the days of her purifying are completed. 5 But if she bears a female child, then she shall be unclean two weeks, as in her menstruation; and she shall continue in the blood of her purifying for sixty-six days. 6 "And when the days of her purifying are completed, whether for a son or for a daughter, she shall bring to the priest at the door of the tent of meeting a lamb a year old for a burnt offering, and a young pigeon or a turtledove for a sin offering, 7 and he shall offer it before the LORD, and make atonement for her; then she shall be clean from the flow of her blood. This is the law for her who bears a child, either male or female.
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  #5  
Old Feb 22, '12, 6:52 pm
LaSainte LaSainte is offline
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Default Re: circumcision on 8th day

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Originally Posted by Joe Kelley View Post
No. The circumcision was on the eighth day Luke 2:21 The presentation occurred 25 days later; 33 days after his birth. Luke 2:22 For the Law of Moses see Leviticus 12: 2-6
Thanks! I never caught the symbolism between Jesus being 33 days old at the presentation and Jesus being 33 when He died, also 3 days missing and 3 years of ministry and the 3 persons of the trinity. The number 3 must have a very special significance!
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  #6  
Old Feb 22, '12, 8:46 pm
Joe Kelley Joe Kelley is offline
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Default Re: circumcision on 8th day

Sorry - I messed that up. The Presentation was 33 days after His Circumcision, not His birth. Note that it says " she shall continue for thirty-three days in the blood of her purifying". I read too quickly and missed the word continue.

Many years back the Circumcision was celebrated on 1 January. I don't remember just when, or why, it was changed. The Presentation/Purification is celebrated 33 days later on February 2.
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  #7  
Old Feb 22, '12, 8:47 pm
Crumpy Crumpy is offline
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Default Re: circumcision on 8th day

I just read about this in the Jewish Publication Society Commentary on Genesis by Rabbi Nahum Sarnu.

He seems to rationalize this a bit. The Jews wanted to get this over while a child was very young, ,so he wouldn't remember it. They didn't want it to be more traumatic if the child had this done at an older age.

The eighth day is the day after one cycle of time that is defined by the account of creation in Genesis, of course. This passage of time also indicates that a child is healthy enough, viable, to endure the procedure.

Having said this, it also turns out that if a Jewish man has not been circumcised, then he is responsible for having it done when he has reached an age of maturity.
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  #8  
Old Feb 22, '12, 9:22 pm
patrick457 patrick457 is offline
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Default Re: circumcision on 8th day

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Originally Posted by Joe Kelley View Post
Sorry - I messed that up. The Presentation was 33 days after His Circumcision, not His birth. Note that it says " she shall continue for thirty-three days in the blood of her purifying". I read too quickly and missed the word continue.

Many years back the Circumcision was celebrated on 1 January. I don't remember just when, or why, it was changed. The Presentation/Purification is celebrated 33 days later on February 2.
Pope Paul VI replaced the feast of the Circumcision with the Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God in 1974.
The Feast of the Circumcision was kept at an early date in the Gallican Rite, as is clearly indicated in a Council of Tours (567), in which the Mass of the Circumcision is prescribed (Con. Tur., II., can. xvii in Labbe, V, 857). The feast celebrated at Rome in the seventh century was not the Circumcision as such, but the octave of Christmas. The Gelasian Sacramentary gives the title "In Octabas Domini", and prohibits the faithful from idolatry and the profanities of the season (P.L., LXXIV, 1061). The earliest Byzantine calendars (eighth and ninth centuries) give for the first of January both the Circumcision and the anniversary of St. Basil. The Feast of the Circumcision was observed in Spain before the death of St. Isidore (636), for the "Regula Monachorum", X, reads: "For it bath pleased the Fathers to appoint a holy season from the day of the Lord's birth to the day of His Circumcision" (P.L., LXXXIII, 880). It seems, therefore, that the octave was more prominent in the early centuries, and the Circumcision later.

It is to be noted also that the Blessed Virgin Mary was not forgotten in the festivities of the holy season, and the Mass in her honor was sometimes said on this day. Today, also, while in both Missal and Breviary the feast bears the title "In Circumcisione Domini et Octave, Nativitatis", the prayers have special reference to the Blessed Virgin, and in the Office, the responses and antiphons set forth her privileges and extol her wonderful prerogatives. The psalms for Vespers are those appointed for her feasts, and the antiphons and hymn of Lauds keep her constantly in view. As paganism passed away the religious festivities of the Circumcision became more conspicuous and solemn; yet, even in the tenth century. Atto, Bishop of Vercelli, rebuked those who profaned the holy season by pagan dances, songs, and the lighting of lamps (P.L., CXXXIV, 43).
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  #9  
Old Feb 23, '12, 12:25 pm
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promethius promethius is offline
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Default Re: circumcision on 8th day

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Originally Posted by nana123 View Post
As part of a parish Bible study, the question came up as to why the 8th day was chosen for circumcision to be performed in the Jewish culture. What is significant about the 8th day?
I'm surprised that no one has mentioned it, but Jesus' resurrection on Easter (Pascha) Sunday is referred to by the church fathers as the eighth day of creation... the day that Jesus finalized the plan of God to make us by restoring us to new life.

How does that relate? Baptism is prefigured by circumcision (meaning that circumcision is the old covenant sacrament of baptism). In baptism, we are submerged into death and brought into new life of Christ, just as Christ brought new life into the world when He rose from the dead on the eighth day. The connection, then, between circumcision and baptism tied to easter Sunday being the 8th day is no mere coincidence... it is just one more piece that illustrates to us the comprehensive nature of God's plan and how it all ties together
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  #10  
Old Feb 23, '12, 12:47 pm
Joe Kelley Joe Kelley is offline
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Default Re: circumcision on 8th day

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Originally Posted by Crumpy View Post
...

He seems to rationalize this a bit. The Jews wanted to get this over while a child was very young, ,so he wouldn't remember it. They didn't want it to be more traumatic if the child had this done at an older age....
I once had a young rabbi, who was working on a degree in physics, working in my lab. He told of circumcising his son, and how hard it was knowing that he was hurting him.
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  #11  
Old Feb 23, '12, 3:12 pm
Robbinson Robbinson is offline
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Default Re: circumcision on 8th day

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Originally Posted by promethius View Post
I'm surprised that no one has mentioned it, but Jesus' resurrection on Easter (Pascha) Sunday is referred to by the church fathers as the eighth day of creation... the day that Jesus finalized the plan of God to make us by restoring us to new life.

How does that relate? Baptism is prefigured by circumcision (meaning that circumcision is the old covenant sacrament of baptism). In baptism, we are submerged into death and brought into new life of Christ, just as Christ brought new life into the world when He rose from the dead on the eighth day. The connection, then, between circumcision and baptism tied to easter Sunday being the 8th day is no mere coincidence... it is just one more piece that illustrates to us the comprehensive nature of God's plan and how it all ties together
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  #12  
Old Feb 24, '12, 11:34 pm
Bezant Bezant is offline
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Default Re: circumcision on 8th day

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Originally Posted by Crumpy View Post
I just read about this in the Jewish Publication Society Commentary on Genesis by Rabbi Nahum Sarnu.

He seems to rationalize this a bit. The Jews wanted to get this over while a child was very young, ,so he wouldn't remember it. They didn't want it to be more traumatic if the child had this done at an older age.
Like Ishmael. I shudder at the thought of having to be circumcised at an age where I'm perfectly aware of what's about to happen.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Crumpy View Post
Having said this, it also turns out that if a Jewish man has not been circumcised, then he is responsible for having it done when he has reached an age of maturity.
Yes, although if there are potential health complications (like haemophilia) then the circumcision is suspended, even indefinitely.
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