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contrary, the statements made in the preceding and following verses, that she went out for prayer, and that she continued pure in the camp of the idolators after her baptism, show that it was the writer's design to exhibit strongly her devotion and her purity, and make it probable that in whatever way the rite was performed, the historian wished to represent it as a religious purification, and consequently that this is the meaning of the word. With this the Syriac version agrees.*

IV. The other passage to be examined is Sirach xxxi. 25. “If one is baptized from a corpse, and again touches it, what will he gain by

* In the Vulgate for {Barti(ero there is a baptizabat se;" in the Syriac the verb las which is rendered in Walton's Polyglot, “ lavabat se.” Respecting the meaning of this word, which is the term invariably used in relation to Christian baptism, the following remarks are submitted to the reader's consideration...

1. The radical signification of this word, as proved by the agreement of similar words in Hebrew, Syriac, and Arabic is, to stand, to make to stand, so to place, to constitute. This sense appears to give no support to dipping, or immersing, or sprinkling, or to any mode in which it may be supposed that the rite was performed. It rather indicates one of its designs. By baptism persons were, externally, both purified, and constituted Christians. These ideas being thus associated, the word for baptism might naturally be used to express both together, or either separately.

2. The sense of cleansing is an acknowledged and established signification, and, therefore, if this meaning will suit the various passages in which the word occurs, another meaning must not be attributed to it. Now the sense of cleansing or purifying does suit every passage both in the Old and New Testament. Only one passage in the former has been adduced in proof of the sense of immersion ; but the sense of purification seems to be more suitable even there, besides having the support of acknowledged use, of which the other is wholly destitute. Numb. xxxi. 23, “Whatever cannot pass through the fire ye shall purify with water." If it were certain, which it is not, that the objects to be purified were dipped in water, then there is nothing to show that this is the meaning either of the Hebrew term or of the Syriac which is put for it. The Hebrew up never denotes to immerse; but in Deut. xviii. 10, it is rendered in the Septuagint nepikabalpw ły tupi, purifying with fire. The Syriac term does not express the same mode as the Hebrew, for another that corresponds exactly to the Hebrew in sense and sound, is used twice in this verse with the sense of passing through. Some other signification must therefore belong to this word, if another expresses the mode, then this in all probability would express the end. Of all imaginable senses the common one is the most appropriate, and such is the meaning of the passage given in the Vulgate, “Whatever can pass through the flames shall be purified with fire, but whatever cannot sustain the fire shall be purified with water of expiation." Aqua expiationis sanctificabitur.

3. In all the other passages in which this word has been quoted from Syriac writings, though the subject sometimes admits of the sense of immersion as well as of purification, there is nothing to require or even to favor the former. The significations given by Schaaf are, abluit se, ablutus, intinctus, immersus in aquam; by Castell, ablutus est, immersit; by Buxtorf, intingi, ablui, abluere—for the noun lotio. The sense of cleansing or purifying is given by all as the principal sense ; that of immersion seems to rest on the passage in Numbers. As baptism was administered in after times among the Syrians by immersion, the word may possibly have subsequently received this sense; but that would not affect its meaning in the Old and New Testaments.

his washing."* This baptism was something required by the Mosaic law. Here we may ascertain what its nature was. From Lev. xxii. 6, we learn that they who touched a dead body were to wash themselves with water; nothing is said of immersion. Another law exhibiting more fully the nature of the rite is given, Numb. xix. 11, “He that toucheth the dead body of any man shall be unclean seven days. He shall purify himself with it, (i.e. with the ashes prepared for the water of separation) on the third day, and on the seventh day he shall be clean, but if he purify not himself the third day, then the seventh day he shall not be clean. Whosoever toucheth the dead body of any man that is dead and purifieth not himself, defileth the tabernacle of the Lord ; and that soul shall be cut off from Israel, because the water of separation was not sprinkled upon him, he shall be unclean.” Here it is quite clear that the service required was styled a purification—and there is not any evidence that this purification consisted of more than the cleansing which was effected with a little fresh water and the ashes of a burnt heifer. It is improbable that Barricóuevos here means dipped. 1. Because if there were any immersion it is unlikely that this rite should be characterised by a part not named in the law. 2. It is construed with åtó which is not suited to that signification, for such an expression as to dip from could not be used in any language. But this is the common construction for words denoting to purify. “He shall sprinkle upon him that is to be cleansed from the leprosy seven times.” Ler. xiv. 7.7 “ Then will I sprinkle clean water upon you, and ye shall be elean from all your filthiness, and from all your idols will I cleanse you.” Ezek. xxxvi. 25. 3. The question shows that the attention of the writer was directed not to the manner in which a rite might be performed, but to its end-to the effect which might be destroyed by something that came after. A man once dipped could not be undipped, but though purified he might become unclean. 4. The correspondence which exists between eúxóuevos, he who prays, in the 24th verse ; BasTicópevos in the 25th verse, and moreuwv, he who fasts, in the 26th, make it probable that as the first and the last are religious terms and are applied to those who are seeking the favour of God, that BantiLóperos also has a religious sense, and is peculiarly appropriate to those who by ceremonial purifications would prepare themselves for the worship of the most Holy. The sense of immersion is opposed to the law and practice of the Jews, and to the sense of the preposition associated with Barricw. It has no support from the context, or scope,

* Βαπτιζόμενος από νεκρού και πάλιν απτόμενος αυτού τι ωφέλησε τη λουτρώ autou. + Καθαρισθέντα από της λέπρας. 1 Καθαρισθήσεσθε από πασών των ακαθαρσιών υμών, και από πάντων των ειδώλων

wree references in the ptuagint in

hisms of the Jews.

or ancient versions. The sense of purification accords both with the requirement and phraseology of the law, and with all the terms directly or indirectly associated therewith; and it is confirmed by the Syriac version. The Vulgate has “qui baptizatur a mortuo.” The Syriac has the verb I woo, he who is cleansed or purified.

These are all the passages in the Septuagint in which the word occurs. There are three references in the New Testament to the baptisms of the Jews. We should consider these before attending to the baptism of John and to Christian baptism.

V. The first of these passages is, Mark vii. 3, “ The pharisees and all the Jews, unless they have washed their hands with a handful (of water] do not eat, observing the tradition of the elders; and from the market, unless they have baptized, they do not eat; and there are many other things which they have been taught to observe, the baptisms of cups, and of jugs, of copper vessels, and of couches.”* The occasion of these words is the mention of a charge brought by the pharisees against the disciples of Jesus of eating bread with common, that is with unwashed hands. It was the custom of the Jews when they had been in their houses all day to perform a slight purification before taking food ; but when they had been to places of public resort, where the unclean might have touched them, something more than the washing of hands first mentioned was necessary; then they baptized. Now the supposition that not merely a few zealots, but all the Jews dipped their whole bodies in water whenever they came from the market, is exceedingly improbable. The time, the trouble, the expense would be of serious importance even in the houses of the wealthy, while for those who had not baths in their own dwellings, the difficulty would on every account be greater. That this should have been the custom is improbable, and it is further improbable that if it were the custom it should no where be alluded to. The most learned of the Jewish Rabbis whose evidence with respect to a national custom, should avail, however worthless their opinions on religious doctrines, declare that there never was such a custom.t That copper vessels and couches should be

* 'Edy jest Battlowital.. . .. BattiOMOÙS totnplwr, &c.

+ The following particulars relating to these purifications may be interesting to some.

Rabbi Eliazar says, “Whosoever despises the washing of hands shall be rooted out of this generation." Rabbi Ase says, “Whosoever eats bread with unwashen hands is as guilty as if he committed fornication." Rabbi Akiba was cast into prison, and Rabbi Joshua Garsites ministered unto him. And they brought him daily water for washing and drinking. Now it happened that on one occasion the jailor found him, and said, “You have a large quantity of water to day; is it to perforate the walls of your prison?” Then he poured one half of it out, and he left the remainder. Rabbi Akiba was told what had been done, yet he said “ Pour the water upon my hands." Rabbi Joshua answered, “My master, there is not enough even for you to drink."

immersed in water is another great improbability; with regard to many of the latter it would hardly be practicable, with regard to all it would be both difficult and injurious. That it was not the writer's design to speak of these baptisms as immersions appears also from the train of thought which the passage exhibits. He wished to explain the reason why the disciples of Jesus were censured for not washing their hands. It is not likely that for this end he would refer to the practice of dipping the whole body even if it were customary, but it is likely that he would refer to purifications similar to what they had neglected. The manner of these purifications will partially appear from John ii. 6; " There were placed there six stone water jars, according to the purification of the Jews, each containing two or three measures.” The water of these jars might be sprinkled or poured on the persons to be purified, or their hands might be dipped, their bodies certainly could not be immersed therein. If the baptizing mentioned had referred only to the hands, then the rite would probably be effected by dipping the hands ; though even then it would not follow that dipping was the meaning of the term. But as the verb stands alone in the middle form, it is most likely that the whole person is referred to. The baptism was a ceremonial purification with water, it is mentioned as one of a more solemn character, how it was performed is not expressed, probably by washing and sprinkling combined. It is highly improbable that the persons and couches of the Jews were immersed, and therefore it is highly improbable that this is the signification of the terms here used. It is certain that the persons and couches were purified; and that the sacred writer refers to these actions as purifications is most probable from the

But Akiba replied, " What can I do? He who eats with unwashen hands perpetrates a crime to be atoned for by death. It is better for me to die than to transgress the commands of the elders."-Wetstein, in Matt. xx.

"First of all the hands must be washed and cleansed, or else he who eats is unclean. Water must be poured upon the hands three times : in the first pouring the fingers are to be raised, in the other two they are to be let down. The hands must be washed together, and not one after another. Lastly, it is necessary that in the ablation of the hands, the left hand should minister as the servant of the right." -Munster Annot. in Deut. viii.

" There are two kinds of washing of the hands, the one called nbus, the other nhau. The first is required of one who eats ordinary bread; the second of one who is engaged in sacred rites, who eats of the offerings and sacrifices. For the first, a quarter of a logus, an egg full and a half, about 27 drachms, is the quantity fixed for washing the hands of one person. For the second, in which the hands were dipped, 40 seah, or nearly 4000 times the former quantity, was necessary."— Mischna Mainionides pref in Tract de Lotione Manuam.

“Rabbi Chasda says, that when he washes with his hands full of water, he receives from heaven his hands full of felicity."Wetstein, in loc.

“ Rite cavis undam de flumine palmis

Sustulit, ac tales effundit ad æthera voces."-Aneid viii. X, S. VOL. V.

2 K

whole tenor of the passage ; this is, therefore, most probably the meaning of the word.

VI. The next passage for consideration is, Luke xi. 37; “While he was speaking, a pharisee asked him to dine with him, and going in he reclined. And the pharisee observing him, was astonished that he had not first baptized before dinner.”* It appears that this was no friendly invitation, but that it was intended to withdraw our Lord from the people, and to gain, if possible, that advantage over him in private, which in public could not be obtained. Nothing is said of the retirement of the host, or of any invitation given by him to his guests to retire to the bath. He was, no doubt, himself baptized, and he expected that his company would be baptized likewise. Baptism, therefore, was something which might be done on entering a house, not only by the inmates, but by casual visitors, and without any aid ; it was something which they were expected to perform without invitation, and of which the neglect was so unusual, as to excite astonishment. All this will exactly agree with such purifications as might be effected by the use of stone waterjars placed at the entrance of the house, according to John i. 6. It is not necessary to point out how utterly inconsistent these circumstances are with the supposition that this baptism was an immersion. If Jesus was not expected, under these circumstances, to immerse himself, then Batticw cannot here mean to dip or immerse.

It is probable that the surprise of the pharisee was expressed in words ; if not, it was noticed by Jesus. Now, in replying to the censure which was thought, if not uttered, our Lord did not refer to the rite which he had neglected as a dipping, but he did refer to it as a purification. He justified himself not by any reference to immersion, its inconvenience, and uselessness, but solely by referring to the ceremonial purifications of the pharisees, and by teaching them the superior importance of purity of mind. “ Ye pharisees purify (kabapijete) the exterior of the cup and the dish, but within ye are full of rapine and wickedness. O foolish men, did not he who made what is without, make also what is within.” The remarks of our Lord, and the language he employed, confirm the conclusion, that the baptism referred to was a simple rite of outward cleansing, and that to purify is the signification of the term used in relation to it.

VII. The last passage referring to Jewish baptisms, is Heb. ix. 9, “During which time offerings and sacrifices are presented, which are incapable of making perfect, in respect to the conscience, him who does service only with things to be eaten and to be drunk, and with various baptisms, services of the body imposed until the season for reformation.”+ The baptisms here mentioned were a part of

* “Ότι ου πρώτον εβαπτίσθη προ του αρίστου.

+ Λατρεύονται μόνον επί βρώμασι, και πόμασι, και διαφόρους βαπτισμούς, δικαιώμασι σαρκός, μέχρι καιρού διορθώσεως επικείμενα.

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