Timothy was circumcised (Acts 16:3)

“Paul wanted


To accompany him.

He took him

And had him circumcised,

Because of the Jews

Who were in those places.

They all knew

That his father

Was a Greek.”

τοῦτον ἠθέλησεν ὁ Παῦλος σὺν αὐτῷ ἐξελθεῖν, καὶ λαβὼν περιέτεμεν αὐτὸν διὰ τοὺς Ἰουδαίους τοὺς ὄντας ἐν τοῖς τόποις ἐκείνοις· ᾔδεισαν γὰρ ἅπαντες ὅτι Ἕλλην ὁ πατὴρ αὐτοῦ ὑπῆρχεν.

The author of Acts indicated that Paul (ὁ Παῦλος) wanted (ἠθέλησεν) Timothy (τοῦτον) to accompany him (σὺν αὐτῷ ἐξελθεῖν).  He took him (καὶ λαβὼν) and had him circumcised (περιέτεμεν αὐτὸν) because of the Jews (διὰ τοὺς Ἰουδαίους) who were in those places (τοὺς ὄντας ἐν τοῖς τόποις ἐκείνοις).  They all knew (ᾔδεισαν γὰρ ἅπαντες) that his father was a Greek (ὅτι Ἕλλην ὁ πατὴρ αὐτοῦ ὑπῆρχεν).  As circumcision was never mentioned in the Jerusalem letter, it was strange that Paul had Timothy circumcised.  Paul seemed to be more worried about the Jews and the Jewish Christians, since he wanted to bring Timothy to the Jewish synagogues also.  The problem was whether Timothy was Greek because of his father or Jewish because of his mother.  Timothy’s father was clearly a Greek gentile.  Thus, Timothy had not been circumcised. Paul now had this done, to ensure Timothy’s acceptability to the Jews whom they would be evangelizing.  This, however, did not compromise the decision made at the Council of Jerusalem, that gentile believers were not required to be circumcised.  Do you have a mixed heritage?

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