11 “Therefore remember that at one time you Gentiles in the flesh, called “the uncircumcision” by what is called the circumcision, which is made in the flesh by hands— 12 remember that you were at that time separated from Christ, alienated from the commonwealth of Israel and strangers to the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world.” (Ephesians 2:11–12 (ESV)
And God remembered Noah and all the wild animals, and all the domesticated animals that were with him in the ark. And God caused a wind to blow over the earth, and the waters subsided.” (Genesis 8:1)
15 “And you shall remember that you were a slave in the land of Egypt, and Yahweh your God brought you out with a strong hand and with an outstretched arm; therefore, Yahweh your God commanded you to keep the Sabbath.” (Deuteronomy 5:15)
“In my heart I have hidden your word, so that I may not sin against you.” (Psalm 119:15)
19”And he took bread, and* after* giving thanks, he broke it* and gave it* to them, saying, “This is my body which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of me.” 20 And in the same way the cup after they had eaten, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood which is poured out for you.” (Luke 22:19-20)
Even a cursory glance at the Old and New Testament reveals that the word “remember” or “remembrance,” and its derivatives, are important to God, and should be important to believers in Christ. The Apostle places great emphasis on Gentile Christians remembering what they were without Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior.
The Greek word for remember (μνημονεύω; mnemoneuo) means to recall and to keep thinking about. When Paul uses it in today’s text, it is in the form of a present, active imperative or command. Therefore, a command is to be obeyed. In this case, actively and consciously obeyed. Especially if the command is from the Lord. What is it that God, and the Apostle Paul, wants Gentile believers to remember?
First, remember that at one time you Gentiles in the flesh, called “the uncircumcision” by what is called the circumcision, which is made in the flesh by hands—.” What does this mean?
Dr. John Walvoord writes, “Having completed his discussion of believers as God’s workmanship (vv. 1–10), Paul began this section with the strongest inferential particle (dio, therefore) to alert the Ephesians to the unenviable position of having no relationship with God. Paul commanded them to remember that formerly, before their conversions, they were Gentiles by birth and called “uncircumcised” by Jews. Jews, being circumcised physically (in the body) disparaged all non-Jews by calling them the “uncircumcised.” This physical difference between Jews and Gentiles affected every area of their lives. A great social and spiritual boundary existed between them.”
Thankfully, in Christ, all such distinctives such as race, color, gender, and economic status no longer are important if one is a believer in Christ. Galatians 3:28 says, “There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.”
Take time to rejoice and remember what you were without Christ, and what you are now in Christ. Have a blessed day in the Lord.
Soli deo Gloria!