Eighths

So in the flurry of April Potter Agency “news” this week, I’ve seen references to this group Eighth Day - a moniker that takes an extra special place in the pantheon of poorly chosen names. A quick visit to their website confirms my suspicion that the group name has to do with … well, uhm … Jesus’ circumcision. Thus Luke 2:21: “And when eight days were accomplished for the circumcising of the child, his name was called JESUS, which was so named of the angel before he was conceived in the womb.” Ouch. I mean, obviously the name is meant to point to the fulfillment of the prophecy in Christ’s birth. But it says right there in the verse that the circumcision only formalized something that was divinely predetermined since the foundations of God’s time. What’s more, Christ’s earthly name was pretty much anticlimactically let out of the heavenly bag by the announcing angel, as the verse also makes clear. Point is, this event does not really figure significantly in the narrative of Christ’s time on earth or in the mystery of faith, not least of all because from a theological point of view, Christ’s arrival and ultimate sacrifice on earth obviated the salvific or atoning efficacy of legalistic rites like circumcision. So couldn’t they have found a less visceral association with Christ than this one? Not that eight is a bad number … in fact, I’ve had that old catchy tune I used to sing in Bible School running through my head all day, “Children Go Where I Send Thee,” in which occurs the lyric, “Eight for eight that stood at the gate.” Course I guess it’d be a titch strange for a trio to be called Eight at the Gate or The Gated Eight or The Gate’s Eight or whatever. But at least the son of man’s foreskin would not be all mixed in with the imagery conjured up every time this group takes the stage.

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