Romans 2:28-29 (NLT) – For you are not a true Jew just because you were born of Jewish parents or because you have gone through the ceremony of circumcision. No, a true Jew is one whose heart is right with God. And true circumcision is not merely obeying the letter of the law; rather, it is a change of heart produced by the Spirit. And a person with a changed heart seeks praise from God, not from people.
Ezekiel 36:26 (NLT) – And I will give you a new heart, and I will put a new spirit in you. I will take out your stony, stubborn heart and give you a tender, responsive heart.
“The answer comes through the biblical echoes in verses 28 and 29. Paul is referring, not to any Gentile who happens to make a special moral effort, but to those who have God’s law written on their hearts by the Spirit…In line with the prophecies of Jeremiah 31 and Ezekiel 36, and for that matter with the explosive spiritual experience of all the early Christians, Paul believed that through Jesus the Messiah Israel’s God had renewed the covenant, and was now welcoming into that new family all those, irrespective of ethnic background and hence of outward badges like circumcision, who believed the gospel. He is here sketching in, very briefly, the much fuller picture of the Christian life, of the renewal of the heart by God’s Spirit.” [N.T. Wright, Paul for Everyone: Romans, Part 1, pp. 40-41]
Prayer: “Father, thank you that you have taken out the stony, stubborn heart and have given me a new, tender and responsive heart. Would you fill me with your Spirit that I bear fruit for your praise and your glory! In Jesus’ Name. Amen”