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we have to add, 4. The person of the rower himself, with the like privilege. (Lev. xxvii. 1-8.) To this species of vow Michaelis thinks the second tenths may have belonged, as Moses nowhere speaks of them as a new institution. They most probably derived their origin from the vow made by Jacob, which is recorded in Gen. xxviii. 22.
lips, or what has gone forth from the mouth; and the same phrase occurs in Psal. lxvi. 14. If, therefore, a person had merely made a vow in his heart, without letting it pass his lips, it would seem as if God would not accept such a vow; regarding it only as a resolution to vow, but not as a vow itself. This limitation is humane, and necessary to prevent much anxiety in conscientious people. If a vow made in the ii. Vows of self-interdiction or self-denial were, when a heart be valid, we shall often experience difficulty in distin-person engaged to abstain from any wine, food, or any other guishing whether what we thought of was a bare intention, thing. These are especially distinguished by Moses from or a vow actually completed. Here, therefore, just as in a other vows in Num. xxx., and are there termed N (ASSUR), civil contract with our neighbour, words-uttered words-are or by DN (ASSUR AL NеPHESH), that is, a bond upon the necessary to prevent all uncertainty." soul or person, a self-interdiction from some desire of nature, or of the heart, or, in other words, a vow of abstinence, particularly from eating and drinking. Among this species of vows may be classed those of the Nazareate or Nazaritism; which, Michaelis is of opinion, was not instituted by Moses, but was of more ancient, and probably of Egyptian origin;s the Hebrew legislator giving certain injunctions for the better regulation and performance of these vows. The statutes respecting the Nazareate are related in the sixth chapter of the book of Numbers. Lamy, Calmet, and others, have distinguished two classes of Nazarites: first, those who were Nazarites by birth, as Samson and John the Baptist were; and, secondly, those who were Nazarites by vow and engage ment; who followed this mode of living for a limited time, at the expiration of which they cut off their hair at the door of the tabernacle, and offered certain sacrifices. The Nazarites were required to abstain from wine, fermented liquors, and every thing made of grapes, to let their hair grow, and not to defile themselves by touching the dead; and if any person had accidentally expired in their presence, the Nazarites of the second class were obliged to recommence their Nazariteship.
2. The party making the vow must be in his own power, and competent to undertake the obligation. Therefore the vows of minors were void, unless they were ratified by the express or tacit consent of their fathers. In like manner, neither unmarried daughters, so long as they were under the parental roof, nor married women, nor slaves, could oblige themselves by vow, unless it was ratified by their fathers, husbands, or masters; the authority being given to the head of the family in every thing which might produce advantage or injury.3
3. The things vowed to be devoted to God must be honestly obtained. It is well known, that in ancient times, many public prostitutes dedicated to their gods a part of their impure earnings. This is most expressly forbidden by Moses. (Deut. xxiii. 18.)1
III. There are two sorts of vows mentioned in the Old Testament, viz. 1. Then (CHеREM), which was the most solemn of all, and was accompanied with a form of execration, and which could not be redeemed; and 2. The (NEDERİM), or common vows.
1. The cherem is nowhere enjoined by Moses; nor does he specify by what solemnities or expressions it was distin- Similar to the Nazareate was the vow frequently made by guished from other vows, but pre-supposes all this as already devout Jews, on their recovery from sickness, or deliverance well known. The species of cherem with which we are best from danger or distress; who, for thirty days before they acquainted, was the previous devotement to God of hostile offered sacrifices, abstained from wine, and shaved the hair cities, against which they intended to proceed with extreme of their head. This usage illustrates the conduct of Paul, severity; and that with a view the more to inflame the minds as related in Acts xviii. 18. The apostle, in consequence of the people to war. In such cases, not only were all the of a providential deliverance from some imminent peril not inhabitants put to death, but also, according as the terms of recorded by the sacred writer, bound himself by a vow, which the vow declared, no booty was made by any Israelite; the the law in this case required him to pay at Jerusalem. In beasts were slain; what would not burn, as gold, silver, and consequence of this transaction, Luke relates that he shaved other metals, was added to the treasury of the sanctuary; his head at Cenchrea. Paul, in his intended journey afterand every thing else, with the whole city, burnt, and an im-wards to Judæa, says, he must needs go to Jerusalem: for the precation pronounced upon any attempt that should ever be laws respecting the Nazarite's vow required the person who made to rebuild it. Of this the history of Jericho (Josh. vi. had entered into this engagement, if he were in a foreign 17-19. 21-24. and vii. 1. 12-26.) furnishes the most re- country when he first laid himself under this solemn obligamarkable example In Moses's lifetime we find a similar tion, to go up to Jerusalem to accomplish it. Here, several vow against the king of Arad. (Num. xxi. 1-3.) If an Is- appointed sacrifices were offered, and a certain course of raelitish city introduced the worship of strange gods, it was purifications and religious observances was prescribed and (as we have already seen) in like manner, to be devoted or performed. This appears from another passage in the same consecrated to God, and to remain un-rebuilt for ever. (Deut. sacred writer: (Acts xxi. 23, 24. 26, 27.) "We have four xiii. 16-18.) Jephthah's dedication of his daughter is gene- men who have a vow on them; them take and PURIFY thyself rally supposed to have been a cherem: but we have shown with them, and be at charges with them, that THEY MAY SHAVE in another part of this work that he did not sacrifice her. THEIR HEADS. Then Paul took the men and the next day The text (Judg. xi. 30.) says that Jephthah vowed a vow (, purifying himself with them, entered into the temple, to signify NEDER), unto the Lord, and again, (verse 39.) that he did with the accomplishment of the days of purification: and that an her according to his vow (7). There is no word in either of offering should be offered for every one of them. And when the these passages that either expresses or implies a cherem. SEVEN days were almost ended," &c. Josephus presents us with an instance parallel to this of Paul, in the person of Bernice, who went to Jerusalem, in order to perform a vow which she had made to God.10
2. The common vows were divided into two sorts, viz. i. Vows of dedication, and, ii. Vows of self-interdiction or abstinence.
i. The 3 (NEDER) or vow, in the stricter sense of the word, was when a person engaged to do any thing, as, for instance, to bring an offering to God; or otherwise to dedicate any thing unto him. Things vowed in this way, were, 1. Unclean beasts. These might be estimated by the priest, and redeemed by the vower, by the addition of one fifth to the value. (Lev. xxvii. 11-13.)-2. Clean beasts used for offerings. Here there was no right of redemption; nor could the beasts be exchanged for others under the penalty of both being forfeited, and belonging to the Lord. (Lev. xxvii. 9, 10.)-3. Lands and houses. These had the privilege of valuation and redemption. (Lev. xxvii. 14-24.)-To these
1 Michaelis's Commentaries on the Law of Moses, vol. ii. p. 269.
Maimonides's Reasons of the Law of Moses, by Dr. Townley, p.308.
Michaelis's Commentaries, vol. ii. pp. 272–275.
See vol. i. part ii. chap. vii. sect. v. § 13.
Michaelis's Commentaries, vol. ii. pp. 280, 281. 8 Ibid. p. 284.
An usage similar to the vow of Nazariteship exists in Persia to this
day. It frequently happens after the birth of a son, that if the parent be
ner's Credibility, book i. c. 9. § 7. (Works, vol. i. pp. 208-212.) Jennings's
ON THE PRAYERS AND FEASTS OF THE JEWS.
I. Various appellations given to prayers.—II. Public prayers.III. Private prayers.-Attitudes of the Jews during prayer. -IV. Forms of prayer in use among the Jews.-V. Fasts of the Jews.-1. Public fasts.-2. Private fasts.-3. Solemnities of the Jewish fasts.
I. PRAYERS, or petitions addressed to the Almighty, are closely connected with sacrifices and vows. (Psal. 1. 14, 15.) VARIOUS APPELLATIONS are given to the prayers mentioned in the Scriptures. In Phil. iv. 6. and 1 Tim. ii. 1. five different terms are employed, viz. armuara, or requests, which may be considered as a generic term, including po, prayers for obtaining those things, whether temporal or spiritual, of which we feel our need; nous, deprecations of evil of every kind; rus, intercessions or prayers in behalf of others; and xapa, thanksgivings or addresses of praise to God for all the blessings conferred upon us. The mode of praying was two-fold; 1. Internal, in which mental prayer is offered from the heart alone (such was the prayer of Hannah, 1 Sam. i. 13.); or, 2. External, being uttered aloud with the voice: hence, in Psal. cxlv. 19. it is termed a cry.
the ungrateful Israelites, BOWED HIS HEAD to the earth and worshipped. (Exod. xxxiv. 8. Compare also Exod. ix. 29.) The humble and contrite publican, standing afar off, SMOTE ON HIS BREAST, and supplicated divine mercy. (Luke xviii. 13.) The prophet Isaiah, when reproving the hypocritical Jews, denounces that Jehovah would hide his eyes from them when they SPREAD FORTH their hands (Isa. i. 15.); and the LIFTING UP OF THE HANDS to heaven, in prayer, is expressly noted by the Psalmist (cxli. 2.) and by the prophet Jeremiah. (Lam. iii. 41.)6
Similar postures were adopted by most of the heathen nations that pretended to any kind of worship, when approaching the objects of their adoration; which it is highly probable that they borrowed from the people of God. Kneeling was ever considered to be the proper posture of supplication, as it expressed humility, contrition, and subjection. If the person to whom the supplication was addressed was within reach, the supplicant caught him by the knees; for as, among the ancients, the forehead was consecrated to genius, the ear to memory, and the right hand to faith, so the knees were consecrated to mercy. Hence those who entreated favour, fell at and caught hold of the knees of the person whose kindness they supplicated. This mode of supplication is particularly referred to in Homer. In the same manner we find our Lord accosted, Matt. xvii. 14.-There came to him a certain man, kneeling down to him, gevurerav autov, falling down at his knees.
Prayers were either public, or private, or stated, that is, performed at a particular time. The STATED HOURS were at As to the lifting up, or stretching out, the hands (often the time of offering the morning and evening sacrifice, or at the joined to kneeling), of which we have seen already several third and ninth hours (Acts ii. 15. and iii. 1.); although it instances, and of which we have a very remarkable one in was the custom of the more devout Jews, as David (Psal. Exod. chap. xvii. 11. where the lifting up, or stretching out. lv. 17.) and Daniel (vi. 10.), to pray three times a day. of the hands of Moses was the means of Israel's prevailing Peter went up on the house-top to pray, about the sixth hour. over Amalek; we find many examples of both in ancient (Acts x. 9.) A similar usage obtains among the Hindoos authors. In some cases, the person petitioning came forto this day. Previously to offering up their supplications ward, and either sat in the dust or kneeled on the ground, they washed their hands, to signify that they had put away placing his left hand on the knee of him from whom he exsin and purposed to live a holy life. As the Jewish phyla-pected the favour, while he touched the person's chin with his terical prayers were long, and the canonical or stated hours right. We have an instance of this also in Homer.9 obliged them to repeat these prayers wherever they happened When the supplicant could not approach the person to to be, the proud, vainglorious Pharisees contrived to be over-whom he prayed, as where a deity was the object of the taken in the streets, in order that they might be observed by prayer, he washed his hands, made an offering, and kneeling the people, and be applauded for their piety. Against this down, either stretched out both his hands to heaven or laid them formal spirit Jesus Christ cautions his disciples in Matt. upon the offering or sacrifice, or upon the altar. In this mode Homer represents the priest of Apollo as praying.10
II. PUBLIC PRAYERS were offered, at first, in the tabernacle, and afterwards in the temple and synagogues, by the minister appointed for that purpose, the people answering (in the synagogues only) at the conclusion with a loud Amen.3 (Neh. viii. 6.)
III. PRIVATE PRAYERS were offered by individuals in a low tone of voice with the head covered;4 either standing or kneeling, sometimes bowing the head towards the earth, and at others with the whole body prostrate on the ground. Sometimes they smote upon the breast, in token of their deep humiliation and penitence, or spread forth their hands, or lifted them up to heaven. Of these various postures in prayer many instances occur in the sacred writers. Thus Hannah, in her affliction, spake in her heart; her lips only moved, but HER VOICE was NOT HEARD (1 Sam. i. 13.); and the proud Pharisee STOODS and prayed with (within) himself. (Luke xviii. 11.) David says, I STRETCH FORTH MY HANDS unto thee. (Psal. exliii. 6.) Solomon KNEELED down upon his knees before all the congregation of Israel, and SPREAD FORTH HIS HANDS towards heaven. (2 Chron vi. 13.) Ezra fell upon his KNEES, and SPREAD out his HANDS to the Lord his God. (Ezra ix. 5.) Our adorable Redeemer, in his agony in the garden of Gethsemane, fell on his face (prostrated himself to the ground), KNEELED down and prayed (Matt. xxvi. 39. Luke xxii. 41.); and the protomartyr Stephen KNEELED down and prayed for his murderers. (Acts vii. 60.) Moses, when interceding for
1 Ward's History, &c. of the Hindoos, vol. ii. p. 342.
2 Drs. Lightfoot and A. Clarke on Matt. vi. 5.
3 The Jews attribute a wonderful efficacy to this word; and have an idle tradition that the gates of Paradise will be open to him who says Amen with all his might.
The reason of this custom was to profess themselves reverent and ashamed before God, and unworthy to appear before him. It was a maxim of the Jews,-"Let not the wise men, nor the scholars of the wise men, pray, unless they be covered." It appears that the Corinthians, though converted to the Christian faith, in this respect conformed to the Jewish practice; and therefore St. Paul remonstrated against it. 1 Cor. xi. 4. Lightfoot's Hor. Heb. in loc. (Works, vol. ii. pp. 769, 770.)
The practice of standing during prayer obtained among the Arabs in the time of Mohammed, who, in his Koran, repeatedly commands his followers to stand when they pray. C. B. Michaelis de ritualibus S. S. ex Alcorano illustrandis, § xiv. in vol. ii. pp. 108, 109. of Pott's and Ruperti's Sylloge Commentationum Theologicarum. See also Dr. Richardson's Travels along the shores of the Mediterranean, vol. i. pp. 463. et seq.
The practice of standing with their hands spread out towards heaven, was adopted by the primitive Christians
Schulzii Archeol. Hebraica, pp. 298, 299. Brunings, Antiquitates Hebrææ, pp. 193-198.
* Των νυν μιν μνησασα παρεζεο, και λαβε γουνων.
To which the following answer is made:
Και τοτ' επειτα τοι ειμι Διος ποτ. χαλκοβκτες δω,
8 The following instances are taken from Virgil:-
Iliad I. 407.
Iliad I. 426, 427.
Eneid iii. 176, 177.
Eneid iii. 607, 608.
Dixerat: et GENUA AMPLEXUS, genibusque volutans
Then kneeled the wretch, and suppliant clung around
ο Και ῥα παροιθ' αυτοιο καθέζετο, και λαβε γουνων
10 Χερνίψαντο δ' επειτα, και ουλοχυτάς ανέλοντο,
Ibid. x. 667.
Iliad I. 500, 501
Iliad I. 449, 450.
Dr. A. Clarke on Exod. ix. 29. Other illustrations of the various attitudes in which the heathens offered up prayer to their deities are given by Bru nings, Compendium Antiquitatum Græcarum, pp. 270–275.
when offering their supplications: they stood up, says Ter- "Our Father, which art in heaven, be gracious unto us! tullian, and directed their eyes towards heaven with expanded O Lord our God, hallowed be thy name, and let the rememhands. A similar testimony is given by Clement of Alex-brance of thee be glorified in heaven above, and upon earth andria :-"We lift up our head and elevate our hands here below. Let thy kingdom reign over us, now and for towards heaven." So also, St. Paul, when exhorting Chris- ever. The holy men of old said, Remit and forgive unto all tains to pray for all classes of persons, describes the gesture men whatsoever they have done against me. And lead us then used in prayer (1 Tim. ii. 8.):—wherefore LIFT UP holy not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil thing. For HANDS without wrath or doubting. Those who affected supe- thine is the kingdom, and thou shalt reign in glory for ever, rior sanctity, or who from motives of ostentation and hypo- and for evermore." crisy, it appears, prayed in the streets, and made long prayers, were severely censured by our Lord for their formal and hypocritical devotion. (Matt. vi. 5. and xxiii. 14.) When at a distance from the temple, the more devout Jews turned themselves towards it when they prayed. We have an instance of this in the conduct of Daniel,4 (Dan. vi. 10.) When the Orientals pray seriously, in a state of grief, they hide their faces in their bosom. To this circumstance the Psalmist alludes (xxxv. 13.), when he says, My prayer returned into mine own bosom.5
IV. Various FORMS OF PRAYER were in use among the Jews from the earliest period of their existence as a distinct nation. The first piece of solemn worship recorded in the Scripture is a hymn of praise composed by Moses, on occasion of the deliverance of the Israelites from the Egyptians, which was sung by all the congregation alternately; by Moses and the men first, and afterwards by Miriam and the women (Exod. xv. 1. 20, 21.); which could not have been done,unless it had been a precomposed set form. Again, in the expiation of an uncertain murder, the elders of the city which lay nearest to the party that was slain, were expressly commanded to say, and consequently to join in, the form of prayer appointed by God himself in Deut. xxi. 7, 8. In Num. vi. 23-26. x. 35, 36. Deut. xxvi. 3. 5-11. and 13-15. there are several other divinely appointed forms of prayer, prescribed by Moses. On the establishment of the monarchy, David appointed the Levites to stand every morning to thank and praise the Lord, and likewise at even (1 Chron. xxiii. 30.); which rule was afterwards observed in the temple erected by Solomon, and restored at the building of the second temple after the captivity. (Neh. xii. 24.) And the whole book of Psalms was, in fact, a collection of forms of prayer and praise, for the use of the whole congregation; as is evident from the titles of several of those divinely inspired compositions, as well as from other passages of Scripture.7
What the stated public prayers were in the time of our Lord, it is now impossible exactly to ascertain: it is, however, probable that many of the eighteen prayers, which have been given in pp. 106, 107. and which are said to have been collected by Rabbi Gamaliel the Elder, the master of St. Paul, were then in use; and as all persons were not able to commit them to memory, it is also probable that a summary of them was drawn up. But we know certainly that it was customary for the more eminent doctors of the Jews to compose forms of short prayers, which they delivered to their scholars. Thus John the Baptist gave his disciples such a form; and Jesus Christ, at the request of his disciples, gave them that most perfect model emphatically termed The Lord's Prayer, which, the very learned Mr. Gregory has shown, was collected out of the Jewish euchologies: he has translated the whole form from them as follows:
1 Apolog. c. 30.
Stromata, lib. ii. p. 722. Dr. Harwood's Introd. vol. ii. p. 302. The practice of extending the hands in prayer still obtains in the East. See Harmer's Observations, vol. ii. pp. 511-513. Fragments supplementary to Calmet, No. eelxxviii.
3 This practice is also general throughout the East. Both Hindoos and Musulmauns offer their devotions in the most public places; as, at the landing places of rivers, in the public streets, and on the roofs of boats, without the least modesty or effort at concealment. Ward's History of the Hindoos, vol. ii. p. 335. See also Fragments, No. cv. Morier's Second Journey, p. 208. Dr. Richardson's Traveis, vol. i. p. 75. and Lightfoot's Hora Hebraicæ on Matt. vi. 5. (Works, vol. ii. p. 156.)
4 Lamy is of opinion that Hezekiah did so, and that we are to understand his turning his face to the wall (2 Kings xx. 2.) of his turning towards the temple. De Tabernaculo, lib. vii. c. 1. § 5.
s Burder's Oriental Literature, vol. ii. p. 20.
See 1 Chron. xvi. 7. 2 Chron. xxix. 30. and Ezra iii. 10, 11. Wheatley on the Common Prayer, Introduction, p. 2.
See the Works of the Rev. and learned Mr. John Gregorie, p. 168. London, 1683. See also Dr. Lightfoot's Hor. Heb. on Matt. vi. 9-13. Drusius, in Critici Sacri. vol. vi. col. 259, 260. Whitby and other commentators, in loc. Dr. Hales has an excellent commentary on this prayer, in his Analysis of Chronology, vol. ii. book ii. pp. 1005-1011. The forins, &c.
V. To prayers the Jews sometimes added FASTS, or religious abstinence from food: these fasts were either public or private.
1. The PUBLIC FASTS were either ordinary or extraordinary. Moses instituted only one ordinary annual public fast, which was solemnized on the day of atonement, other public fasts being left to the discretion of the nation. Of extraordinary fasts appointed by authority of the civil magistrate, several instances are recorded in the Old Testament. See 1 Sam. vii. 5, 6. 2 Chron. xx. 3. and Jer. xxxvi. 9. After the return of the Jews from captivity, Ezra proclaimed a fast at the river Ahava, in order to implore the direction and blessing of God (Ezra viii. 21.): and several other fasts were subsequently added, to commemorate particular melancholy events, of which we read in Zech. viii. 19.; viz. the fast of the fourth month, which was instituted in memory of the famine in Jerusalem (Jer. lii. 6.); the fast of the fifth month, for the destruction of the temple (Zech. vii. 3.); the fast of the seventh month, on account of the murder of Gedaliah (2 Kings xxv. 28.); and the fast of the tenth month, when Jerusalem was besieged. (Jer. lii. 4.) Extraordinary public fasts were also held when the Jews were threatened with any imminent danger. (Joel i. 14. ii. 12.) In like manner the people of Nineveh, on hearing the prophetic message of Jonah, whom they believed to be truly sent by God, proclaimed a fast; and by a decree of the king and his nobles, neither man nor beast, neither herd nor flock, was permitted to taste any food, or even to drink any water. (Jonah iii. 6, 7.) This was carrying their abstinence to a greater degree of rigour than what we find recorded of the Jews; for though, during seasons of public calamity, they made their children to fast (as may be inferred from Joel ii. 15, 16.), yet we nowhere read of their extending that severity to cattle.
2. PRIVATE FASTS were left to the discretion of individuals who kept them, in order that they might by prayer and fasting avert imminent calamities, and obtain the favour of God. So David fasted and prayed during the sickness of his child by Bathsheba (2 Sam. xii. 16.); Ahab, when he heard the divine judgments which were denounced against him by the prophet Elijah (1 Kings xxi. 27.); and the pious Jews, Ezra (x. 6.), and Nehemiah (i. 4.), on account of the calamities of their country and of the Jews. In the time of Jesus Christ, private fasts appear to have been deemed necessary, in order to yield an acceptable worship to God: such at least was the case with the Pharisees and their followers, who affected more than ordinary devotion; and who fasted twice in the week, on the second and fifth days (Luke xviii. 12.) to which acts of devotion they ascribed a marvellous efficacy.10
3. With regard to the SOLEMNITIES OF THE JEWISH FASTS, the precept of the law simply enjoined that they should afflict their souls (Lev. xvi. 29.); conformably to which the prophet Joel (ii. 13.) exhorts his countrymen to rend their hearts and not their garments. From various passages of Scripture, it appears that the Jewish fasts, whether public or private, were distinguished by every possible mark of grief; the people being clothed in sackcloth, with ashes Strewed on their heads, downcast countenances, rent garments, and (on public occasions) with loud weeping and supplication. (2 Sam. xiii. 19. Psal. xxxv. 13. Isa. lviii. 5. Lam. ii. 10. Joel i. 13, 14. ii. 12, 13.) At these times they abstained from food until evening. The sanctimonious Pharisees affected the utmost humility and devotion, disfiguring their faces and avoiding every appearance of neatness; against this conduct our Lord cautions his disciples in Matt. vi. 16, 17.11
See an account of this fast in p. 127. supra.
10 Lightfoot's Hor. Hebr. on Matt. ix. 14. Schulzii Archæologia Hebraica, pp. 301, 302. Home's Hist. of the Jews, vol. ii. pp. 279, 280.
11 See Lightfoot's Hor. Heb. on Matt. vi. 9-13. and Luke xviii. 12. Jose.
of prayer of the modern Jews are described by Mr. Allen. Modern Juda-phus, Ant. Jud. lib. iii. c. 10. § 3. Schulzii Archæol. Hebr. pp. 301, 302, ism, pp. 326-354.
ON THE PURIFICATIONS OF THE JEWS.
I. Materials with which the purifications of the Jews were performed.-II. Ceremonies of purification.-III. Of the persons lustrated.-IV. Account of the different kinds of legal impurities, particularly,-1. The leprosy of the person.-2. The leprosy of clothes.-3. The house leprosy.-V. Minor legal impurities, and their lustrations.
where the being wholly washed implies one who had become a disciple of Christ, and consequently had renounced the sins of his former life. He who had so done was supposed to be wholly washed, and not to need any immersion, in imitation of the ceremony of initiation, which was never repeated among the Jews. All that was necessary in such case was the dipping or rinsing of the hands and feet, agreeably to the customs of the Jews. Sometimes the lustration was performed by sprinkling blood, or anointing with oil. Sprinkling was performed either with the finger or with a branch of cedar and hyssop tied together with scarlet wool. (Lev. xiv. 4. 6. Num. xix. 18. Psal. li. 7.)
III. The objects of lustration were either persons or things
IT was requisite that every one who was about to make any offering to Jehovah should be cleansed from all impuri-dedicated to divine worship. The Levites, priests, and above ties, or lustrated-to adopt an expression in common use among the Romans. The materials, form, and ceremonies of these lustrations, which were prescribed by Moses, were various, according to different circumstances. The design of them all was not only to preserve both the health and morals of the Israelites, but also to intimate how necessary it was to preserve inward purity, without which they could not be acceptable to God, though they might approach his sanctuary.
I. The purifications were for the most part performed with water, sometimes with blood (Heb. ix. 21, 22.), and with oil. (Exod. xxx. 26-29. Lev. viii. 10, 11.) The water of purification was to be drawn from a spring or running stream, and was either pure, or mixed with blood (Heb. ix. 19.), or with the ashes of the red heifer. For preparing these ashes, a heifer of a red colour was burnt with great solemnity. This ceremony is described at length in the nineteenth chapter of the book of Numbers. As all the people were to be interested in it, the victim was to be provided at their charge. This Jewish rite certainly had a reference to things done under the Gospel, as St. Paul has remarked in his Epistle to the Hebrews-For if the blood of bulls and of goats (alluding to the sin-offerings, and to the scape-goat), and THE ASHES OF A HEIFER, sprinkling the unclean, sanctifieth to the purifying of the flesh, how much more shall the blood of Christ.... purge (or purify) your conscience from dead works to serve the living God. As the principal stress of allusion in this passage is to the ordinance of the red heifer, we may certainly conclude that it was designed to typify the sacrifice of our adorable Redeemer.
all, the high-priest, underwent a purification previously to undertaking their respective offices. In like manner the Israelites were commanded to sanctify themselves by ablutions both of their persons and clothes, &c. previously to receiving the law (Exod. xix. 10, 11. 14, 15. Heb. ix. 19.); and after the giving of the law and the people's assent to the book of the covenant, Moses sprinkled them with blood. (Exod. xxiv. 5-8. Heb. ix. 19.) So also were the tabernacle, and all its sacred vessels anointed with oil (Exod. xxx. 26-28. xl. 9-11. Lev. viii. 10, 11.), and as Saint Paul further intimates, were sprinkled with the blood of the victims.
Those who were about to offer sacrifice unto Jehovah were also to be lustrated (1 Sam. xvi. 5.); as well as those who were repairing to divine worship to offer their prayers (Judith xii. 7,8.); and especially the priest and the high-priest, before they executed their respective offices. (Exod. xxx. 20.) Lastly, all who according to the Mosaic law were adjudged impure, were to be purified before they could be admitted into the congregation of the Lord. (Num. xix. 20.)
IV. In the Mosaic law, those persons are termed unclean, whom others were obliged to avoid touching, or even meeting, unless they chose to be themselves defiled, that is, cut off from all intercourse with their brethren; and who, besides, were bound to abstain from frequenting the place where divine service and the offering-feasts were held, under penalties still more severe.
The duration and degrees of impurity were different. In some instances, by the use of certain ceremonies, an unclean person became purified at sunset; in others, this did not take place until eight days after the physical cause of defilement In the ordinance of the red heifer, we may perceive the ceased. Lepers were obliged to live in a detached situation, wisdom of Moses (uuder the guidance of Jehovah) in taking separate from other people, and to keep themselves actually every precaution that could prevent the Israelites from falling at a distance from them. They were distinguished by a peinto idolatry. The animal to be selected was a heifer, in op-culiar dress; and if any person approached, they were bound position to the superstition of the Egyptians, who held this to give him warning, by crying out, Unclean! unclean! animal to be sacred, and worshipped Isis under the form of a Other polluted persons, again, could not directly touch those heifer:-it was also to be a red heifer, without spot, that is, that were clean, without defiling them in like manner, and altogether red, because red bulls were sacrificed to appease were obliged to remain without the camp, that they might not the evil demon Typhon, that was worshipped by the Egyp-be in their way. (Num. v. 1-4.) Eleven different species tians; wherein was no blemish, so that it was free from every imperfection;-on which never came yoke, because any animal that had been used for any common purpose was deemed improper to be offered in sacrifice to God.2
The animal being slain, and her blood sprinkled as directed in Num, xix. 3, 4., was then reduced to ashes, which were to be collected and mixed with running water (ver. 9. 17.), for the purpose of lustration.
II. The Jews had two sorts of washing; one, of the whole body by immersion, which was used by the priests at their consecration, and by the proselytes at their initiation; -the other, of the hands or feet, called dipping, or pouring of water, and which was of daily use, not only for the hands and feet, but also for the cups and other vessels used at their meals. (Matt. xv. 2. Mark vii. 3, 4.) The six water-pots of stone, used at the marriage-feast of Cana, in Galilee (John ii. 6.), were set for this purpose. To these two modes of purification Jesus Christ seems to allude in John xiii. 10.; 1 Josephus, Ant. Jud. lib. iii. c. 8. § 6.
This opinion obtained among the ancient Greeks. See particularly Homer's Iliad, x. 291–293. and Odyssey, iii. 382., and Virgil's Georgics, iv.
550, 551. Dr. A. Clarke on Num. xix. 2.
While Mr. W. Rae Wilson (who visited Palestine in 1819) was at Cana, "six women having their faces veiled came down to the well, each carry ing on her head a pot for the purpose of being filled with water. vessels were formed of stone, and something in the shape of the bottles used in our country for containing vitriol, having great bodies and small necks, with this exception, they were not so large; many had handles attached to the sides; and it was a wonderful coincidence with Scripture, that the vessels appeared to contain much the same quantity as those, which the Evangelist informs [us] had been employed on occasion of the nuptial celebration," viz. "three firkins," that is, about twelve gallons each. Wilson's Travels in Egypt and the Holy Land, p. 339. first edition.)
of impurity are enumerated in the Levitical law, to which the later Jews added many others. But the severest of all was,
1. The Leprosy, an infectious disease of slow and imperceptible progress, beginning very insidiously and gently, for the most part with one little bright spot, which causes no trouble, though no means will make it disappear: but increasing with time into furfuraceous scales that ultimately become a thick scab, it imperceptibly passes into a disease, which, though divested of its deadly nature in our temperate climates and by our superior cleanliness, is in the East attended with the most formidable symptoms: such as mortification and separation of whole limbs, and when arrived at a certain stage, it is altogether incurable. As the varieties and symptoms of this frightful malady are discussed at length in a subsequent part of this work, it will be sufficient to remark, for the present, that, among the heathens, the leprosy was considered as inflicted by their gods, by whom alone it could be removed, and the same notion appears to have prevailed among the Israelites; for when the king of Syria sent Naaman, his commander-in-chief, to the king of Israel, to heal him of his leprosy, the latter exclaimed,-Am I GOD, to kill a man of his leprosy? (2 Kings v. 7.) Some instances are and to make alive, that this man doth send unto ME, to recover also recorded in which this disease is represented as a punish ment immediately inflicted by God for particular sins; as in the cases of Miriam, Gehazi, and king Uzziah. This circumstance, connected with the extreme foulness of the disorder, rendered it a very striking emblem of moral pollution; and the exclusion of persons infected with it from the worship and people of God was fitted not only to humble and reform the
ness, died in the flower of his age; but was happily succeeded | had said, "God is every where in his essence, and cannot be by his son Hezekiah, who, among other reformations, it is said, broke in pieces the brazen serpent that Moses had made, to which the children of Israel did burn incense. (2 Kings xviii. 4.) But Hezekiah's reformation was soon overturned upon the succession of his wicked son Manasseh, who seems to have made it his business to search out what God in his law had forbidden, and to make the practice of it his study. (2 Chron. xxxiii. 3-8.)
The princes who succeeded (Josiah only excepted) and their people seem to have lived in a kind of competition with one another in wickedness and idolatry, and to have given a loose to the wildness of their imaginations in the worship of God, which brought upon Judah and her people the utmost fury of God's wrath, and those judgments which had been decreed, and which ended in the captivity of king and people.1 At length, however, become wiser by the severe discipline they had received, the tribes that returned into their native country from the Babylonian captivity wholly renounced idolatry; and thenceforth uniformly evinced the most deeplyrooted aversion from all strange deities and foreign modes of worship. This great reformation was accomplished by Ezra and Nehemiah, and the eminent men who accompanied or succeeded them: but, in the progress of time, though the exterior of piety was maintained, the "power of godliness" was lost; and we learn from the New Testament, that, during our Saviour's ministry, the Jews were divided into various religious parties, which widely differed in opinion, and pursued each other with the fiercest animosity, and with implacable hatred.
Very numerous are the idols mentioned in the Scriptures, particularly in the Old Testament. It is proposed in the following pages of this section to offer, in the first place, a short notice of the idols which were peculiar to the Israelites; and, secondly, of those which they adopted from the Ammonites, Syrians, Phoenicians, Babylonians, and other nations of antiquity.2
II. IDOLS WORSHIPPED PARTICULARLY BY THE ISRAELITES.Scarcely, as we have already observed, had the children of Israel been delivered from their cruel bondage in Egypt, when they returned to those idols to which they had been accustomed.
1. The first object of their idolatrous worship was a GOLDEN CALF. (Exod. xxxii. 1-6.) Having been conducted through the wilderness by a pillar of cloud and fire, which preceded them in their marches, while that cloud covered the mountain where Moses was receiving the divine commands, they imagined that it would no longer be their guide; and therefore they applied to Aaron to make for them a sacred sign or symbol, as other nations had, which might visibly represent God to them. With this request Aaron unhappily complied: the people offered burnt-offerings, and brought peace-offerings, and sat down to eat and to drink, and rose up to play. The materials of this idol were the golden ear-rings of the people, worn in these eastern countries by men as well as women; and probably they were some of the jewels which they had demanded of the Egyptians. They were cast in a mould by Aaron, and subsequently chiselled into a calf, which is generally supposed to have been an exact resemblance of the celebrated Egyptian deity, Apis, who was worshipped under the form of an ox. This ancient Egyptian superstition is still perpetuated on Mount Libanus, by those Druses who assume the name of Okkals, and who pay divine honours to a calf.3 2. In imitation of this were the two GOLDEN CALVES, made by Jeroboam, the first king of Israel, after the secession of the ten tribes. The Egyptians had two oxen, one of which they worshipped under the naine of Apis, at Memphis, the capital of Upper Egypt, and the other under the name of Mnevis, at Hierapolis, the metropolis of Lower Egypt. In like manner, Jeroboam set up one of his calves at Bethel, and the other at Dan. (1 Kings xii. 28-32.) Like the idolaters in the wilderness, this leader of the rebels proclaimed before the idols upon the feast of their consecration, These are thy gods, 0 Israel, which brought thee out of the land of Egypt! as if he 1 Home's Hist. of the Jews, vol. ii. pp. 282-291. ? The following account of the idols worshipped by the Jews is abridged principally from Lamy's Apparatus Biblicus, vol. ii. pp. 176-188. Calmet's Dissertations in his Commentaire Littéral, tom. i. part ii. pp. 173-178. and tom. vi. pp. 745–752. and his Dictionary of the Bible under the several Hebrææ, vol. iii. pp. 1-102. Jahn's Archæologia Biblica, §§ 400-415. Ackermann's Archeologia Biblica, $$ 387-402. Millar's Hist. of the Propagation of Christianity, vol. i. pp. 227-340. Godwin's Moses and Aaron, book iv. pp. 140-178. and Alber, Inst. Herm. Vet. Test. tom. i. pp. 394-406. Dr. Clarke's Travels, vol. iv. p. 204.
names of the idol deities.
included in any place: he dwells among you here as well as at Jerusalem, and if you require any symbols of his presence, behold here they are in these calves which I have set up;" for they could not be so stupid as to believe, that the idols taken just before out of the furnace had been their deliverers, so many ages before. It is evident, that the worship of these calves was not regarded by the sacred writers and by the prophets, as an absolute Pagan idolatry, but only as a schism, which was indeed very criminal in itself, but did not come up to the degree of a total apostasy; for the history of the revolt of the ten tribes introduces Jeroboam speaking not like a person whose intention was to make the people change their religion, but as representing to them that the true God, being every where, was not confined to any certain place, and, therefore, they might pay their devotions to him as well in Dan and Bethel as at Jerusalem.
The worship offered before these images is supposed to have been in imitation of the ceremonies of the Mosaic law. As most of the priests of the family of Aaron, and the Levites who had their cities and abodes among the ten revolted tribes, retired into the dominions of the king of Judah, to avoid joining in the schism, which proved a great additional strength to the house of David; Jeroboam seized their cities and estates, and he eased the people of paying their tithes, there being none to demand them; so he gratified them by making priests out of every tribe and family, even in the extreme part of the country. The pontificate and supremacy over this schismatical priesthood he reserved in his own hands. These idols were at length destroyed by the kings of Assyria; the calf in Bethel was carried to Babylon, with other spoils, by Shalmaneser, and the other in Dan was seized by Tiglath-Pileser, about ten years before, in the invasion which he made upon Galilee, in which province the city stood.
3. The BRAZEN SERPENT was an image of polished brass, in the form of one of those fiery serpents (or serpents whose bite was attended with violent inflammation) which were sent to chastise the murmuring Israelites in the wilderness. By divine command Moses made a serpent of brass, or copper, and put it upon a pole; and it came to pass that if a serpent had bitten any man, when he beheld the serpent of brass, he lived. (Num. xxi. 6-9.) This brazen serpent was preserved as a monument of the divine mercy, but in process of time became an instrument of idolatry. When this superstition began, it is difficult to determine; but the best account is given by the Jewish rabbi, David Kimchi, in the following manner. From the time that the kings of Israel did evil, and the children of Israel followed idolatry, till the reign of Hezekiah, they offered incense to it; for, it being written in the law of Moses, whoever looketh upon it shall live, they fancied they might obtain blessings by its mediation, and, therefore, thought it worthy to be worshipped. It had been kept from the days of Moses, in memory of a miracle, in the same manner as the pot of manna was: and Asa and Jehoshaphat did not extirpate it when they rooted out idolatry, because in their reign they did not observe that the people worshipped this serpent, or burnt incense to it; and, therefore, they left it as a memorial. But Hezekiah thought fit to take it quite away, when he abolished other idolatry, because in the time of his father they adored it as an idol; and though pious people among them accounted it only as a memorial of a wonderful work, yet he judged it better to abolish it, though the memory of the miracle should happen to be lost, than suffer it to remain, and leave the Israelites in danger of committing idolatry hereafter with it.
On the subject of the serpent-bitten Israelites being healed by looking at the brazen serpent, there is a good comment in the book of Wisdom, chap. xvi. ver. 4-12. in which are these remarkable words :-"They were admonished, having a sign of salvation (i. e. the brazen serpent) to put them in remembrance of the commandments of thy law. For he that turned himself towards it, was not saved by the THING that he saw, but by THEE that art the saviour of all." (ver. 6, 7.) To the circumstance of looking at the brazen serpent in order to be healed, our Lord refers (John iii. 14, 15.), As Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up, that whosoever believeth in him, should not perish, but have eternal life: from which words we may learn, 1. That as the serpent was lifted up on the pole or ensign; so Jesus Christ was lifted up on the cross. 2. That as the Israelites were to look at the brazen serpent; so sinners must look to Christ for salvation. 3. That as God pro