Circumcision is a requirement given to the patriarchs/Mosaic law which somehow the SDA shuns yet hold on to the sabbath law from the same covenant

Both requirements are said to be perpetual and everlasting.

Genesis 17:13 NIV

Whether born in your household or bought with your money, they must be circumcised. My covenant in your flesh is to be an everlasting covenant. 14 Any uncircumcised male, who has not been circumcised in the flesh, will be cut off from his people; he has broken my covenant.”

Exodus 3116 NIV

The Israelites are to observe the Sabbath, celebrating it for the generations to come as a lasting covenant.

The SDA observe the physical sabbath(abstain from work/kindle no fire) as well as the spiritual requirements but when it comes to circumcision they only observe the spiritual requirements(circumcise the heart) and neglect the physical side.

Why do the SDA hold onto the sabbath law yet neglect circumcision?

  • 1
    @ Nigel,thought as much Jan 21, 2022 at 13:30
  • I deleted my comment as @Ray Butterworth reminded me that the sabbath is sanctified from the beginning of creation, which does make a difference, not part of Mosaic Law, unless one considers that Mosaic law incorporates previous restrictions into a comprehensive statement of all Law. But that would be a different question, I think.
    – Nigel J
    Jan 21, 2022 at 17:05
  • Where do you get your idea that adventists shun circumspection? While it's not everyone there is a part of the community that does still have the procedure done.
    – Bluephlame
    Jan 21, 2022 at 20:46

1 Answer 1


Circumcision was part of the specific covenant with Israel that confirmed them as God's "chosen people", chosen to serve as an example (both good and bad) of what happens to a nation when it does or does not follow God's rules. Christians are generally agreed that this requirement is not binding on anyone else other than those that are part of the "old" covenant.

On the other hand, the Sabbath Day was established at creation:

Then God blessed the seventh day and sanctified it, because in it He rested from all His work which God had created and made.
— Genesis 2:3

Notice that it was the day itself that was sanctified. God created the Sabbath Day as intrinsically different from the other six.

The Sabbath Day is explicitly listed as one of the Ten Commandments.

Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy.

Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the LORD your God. In it you shall do no work: you, nor your son, nor your daughter, nor your male servant, nor your female servant, nor your cattle, nor your stranger who is within your gates.

For in six days the LORD made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested the seventh day. Therefore the LORD blessed the Sabbath day and hallowed it.
— Exodus 20:8–11

Notice that it is "the Sabbath of the LORD", not "of the Israelites". Notice that one must "keep it holy", not "make it holy" or "treat it as if it were holy". Notice that God "blessed the Sabbath day and hallowed it" at creation.

God's covenant with Israel did require that they obey the Ten Commandments, but those commandments weren't written explicitly for Israel as part of their covenant. The Sabbath Day was made holy at creation, and the Israelites were expected to recognize and respect God's special day.

"The Israelites are to observe the Sabbath, celebrating it for the generations to come as a lasting covenant.", but that doesn't mean that only Israel must follow God's laws. Many people today as part of their jobs are required to swear to defend the constitution, or to uphold and obey the law, or …, but that in no way implies that other people are not expected to do the same.

God wants everyone to obey his commandments, with covenanted Israel serving as an example of what obeying them means. The Sabbath serves as a sign that one is following God's laws.

  • Up-voted +1. I deleted my previous comment to the question when I read your answer. Quite rightly, you remind us that the seventh day is sanctified from the beginning of creation. This reminds me, also, of the restriction of partaking of blood is not part of Mosaic law but is instituted immediately after the Flood, in the new world.
    – Nigel J
    Jan 21, 2022 at 17:03

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