Romans, Blog Through the Bible Project
Romans 2:28 A person is not a Jew who is one only outwardly, nor is circumcision merely outward and physical. 29 No, a person is a Jew who is one inwardly; and circumcision is circumcision of the heart, by the Spirit, not by the written code. Such a person’s praise is not from other people, but from God.
The last sentence echoes Jesus’ wry, sad and exasperated comment in John, “How can you believe if you accept praise from one another, yet make no effort to obtain the praise that comes from the only God?”
Accepting praise from one another actually militates against and weakens our faith. Our sight and world-view become horizontal. We focus on what we can see, on people.
Our choices are no longer governed by what will, so to say, impress God (Jesus is recorded as being amazed at the faith of the Syro-Phoenician woman) but what will win us praise from people.
And we are the losers, because we dilute our faith, that essential navigational tool to steer us through the thickets of life.
Those, however, whose heart has been purified by the Spirit seek the praise, not of man, but of God.
And what peace there is in that, in seeking praise from the audience of one.