For we are the circumcision, which worship God in the spirit, and rejoice in Christ Jesus, and have no confidence in the flesh.
St. Paul retorts upon the Judaizers the term of reproach by which they stigmatized the Gentiles as impure. In the Mosaic law the word is used to denounce the foul profligacies of heathen worship (Deuteronomy 23:19). Among the Jews of the Christian era, it was a common designation of the Gentiles involving the idea of ceremonial impurity. St. John applies the term to those whose moral impurity excludes them from the new Jerusalem, the spiritual Israel (Revelation 22:15). As a term of reproach, the word on the lips of a Jew signified chiefly "impurity;" of a Greek, "impudence." The herds of dogs which prowl about Eastern cities, without a home or owner, feeding on the refuse of the streets, quarrelling among themselves, and attacking the passer by, explain both applications of the image. Thus St. Paul's language is strikingly signifiSong of Solomon They speak of themselves as God's children; they boast of eating at God's table; they reproach us as dogs, as foul and unclean, as outcasts from the covenant because, forsooth, we eat meat bought at the shambles, and do not observe the washing of cups and platters. I reverse the image. We are the children of God, for we banquet on the spiritual feast which God has spread before us: they are the dogs, for they greedily devour the garbage of carnal ordinances, the very refuse of God's table (ver. 8).
Parallel VersesKJV: For we are the circumcision, which worship God in the spirit, and rejoice in Christ Jesus, and have no confidence in the flesh.