676. There were many among the sons of Israel who believed that they were elected in preference to all others, because of their having been circumcised, and many among the Jews at this day who so believe, and many among Christians have the same belief because of their having been baptized; and yet both circumcision and baptism were given solely as a sign and memorial that the recipients thereof were to be purified from evils, and thus become elect. What is an external in man without an internal but like a temple without worship, which is of no use except perhaps as a stable? And, further, what is an external without an internal but like a field full of reeds and rushes without grain, or like a vineyard consisting merely of vines and leaves without grapes, or like the fig-tree without fruit, which the Lord cursed (Matt. 21:19), or like the lamps without oil in the hands of the foolish virgins (Matt. 25:3)? Or even what is it but like a dwelling-place in a tomb, where there are dead bodies under foot, bones around the walls, and specters of the night flitting beneath the roof, or like a carriage drawn by leopards, with a wolf for a driver and a fool for its occupant? For the external man is not a man, but only the figure of a man; the internal, which is to be wise from God, is what constitutes man. So is it with one circumcised and baptized, unless he circumcises or washes his head.