The commandments of God (1 Cor. 7:19)

“Neither circumcision counts

For anything

Nor uncircumcision.

But keeping

The commandments of God

Counts.”

ἡ περιτομὴ οὐδέν ἐστιν, καὶ ἡ ἀκροβυστία οὐδέν ἐστιν, ἀλλὰ τήρησις ἐντολῶν Θεοῦ.

Paul said that neither circumcision counts (ἡ περιτομὴ οὐδέν ἐστιν) for anything nor did uncircumcision count for anything (καὶ ἡ ἀκροβυστία οὐδέν ἐστιν).  But keeping the commandments of God (ἀλλὰ τήρησις ἐντολῶν Θεοῦ) counts for everything.  Only the Pauline letters used this word ἀκροβυστίᾳ, that means the prepuce, foreskin, or uncircumcision.  Paul was clear, neither circumcision or uncircumcision had any value.  What was more important were the commandments of God as outlined by Moses in the Ten Commandments.  Circumcision was no longer a sign of the new covenant as it had been in the old Jewish Mosaic covenant.  Do you keep the commandments of God?

Wisdom is in the Law of God (Bar 4:1-4:4)

“Wisdom is the book

Of the commandments

Of God.

Wisdom is

The law

That endures forever.

All who hold her fast

Will live.

Those who forsake her

Will die.

Turn!

O Jacob!

Take her!

Walk toward

The shining of her light!

Do not give

Your glory

To another!

Do not give

Your advantages

To an alien people!

Happy are we!

O Israel!

We know

What is pleasing

To God.”

The author of Baruch clearly states that wisdom is the book of the commandments of God, the law that endures forever. There is an equivalency between wisdom and the commandments of God since they are one and the same. Thus the beginning of wisdom is following God’s law. Everyone who holds fast to wisdom will live, while those who forsake her will die. Jacob was to turn and take wisdom. They were to walk towards the shining light of wisdom. They were not to give glory to anyone else. They were not to give their advantages to an alien people. Israel was happy, because they knew what was pleasing to God.