Rabbinical Baptism

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Someone on the Living Network groups was looking for source material regarding historic baptism. They were wondering if there is any support for Herod’s baptism other than what was provided in Barbara Thiering's Jesus and the Riddle of the Dead Sea Scrolls which is quoted in several articles including the one on White stones and on Corban.

Some one else brought up the question of John and His Baptism. Understanding the idea of and the difference between the Baptismof John and Herod's Baptism can be very eye opening.

Understanding that there was a long tradition of Rabbinical Baptism may also help. But understanding what Corban was and why the Corban of the Pharisees made the word of God to none effect and how the definition of Religion has changed is almost essential to any real comprehension of these terms.

"According to rabbinical teachings, which dominated even during the existence of the Temple (Pes. viii. 8), Baptism, next to circumcision and sacrifice, was an absolutely necessary condition to be fulfilled by a proselyte to Judaism (Yeb. 46b, 47b; Ker. 9a; 'Ab. Zarah 57a; Shab. 135a; Yer. Kid. iii. 14, 64d). "

"Baptism was practiced in ancient (Ḥasidic or Essene) Judaism, first as a means of penitence, as is learned from the story of Adam and Eve, who, in order to atone for their sin, stood up to the neck in the water, fasting and doing penance—Adam in the Jordan for forty days, Eve in the Tigris for thirty-seven days (Vita Adæ et Evæ, i. 5-8)."

"The Baptism of the proselyte has for its purpose his cleansing from the impurity of idolatry, and the restoration to the purity of a new-born man. This may be learned from the Talmud (Soṭah 12b) in regard to Pharaoh's daughter, whose bathing in the Nile is explained by Simon b. Yoḥai to have been for that purpose. The bathing in the water is to constitute a rebirth, wherefore "the ger is like a child just born" (Yeb. 48b); and he must bathe "in the name of God"—"leshem shamayim"—that is, assume the yoke of Gcd's kingdom imposed upon him by the one who leads him to Baptism ("maṭbil"), or else he is not admitted into Judaism (Gerim. vii. 8). For this very reason the Israelites before the acceptance of the Law had, according to" 1906 Jewish Encyclopedia Philo on the Decalogue ("De Decalogo," ii., xi.), as well as according to rabbinical tradition, to undergo the rite of baptismal purification (compare I Cor. x. 2, "They were baptized unto Moses [the Law] in the clouds and in the sea").

The Jewish religion requires that male and female conversion candidates to immerse themselves in a ritual bath called a mikveh. Jewish baptism by immersion in ancient times was to be performed in the presence of witnesses (Yebam. 47b). The person being baptized made special preparations including a fresh profession of his faith before the designated "fathers of the baptism" (Kethub. 11a; Erub 15a).

"Baptism did not start with John the Baptist. It was the practice of the Jews to baptize converts as much as five centuries before John the Baptist was born. John was simply building on what was already established. ... Some time between 200 to 500 years before the birth of Jesus and John, baptism became a part of the traditional procedure for conversion to Judaism." R. J. GrigaitisJewish Baptism 2007-06-08 http://grigaitis.net/home/rjgrigaitis_resume.html

"Josephus tells us that even during the years of war (66-73 A.D.) the laws of ritual immersion were strictly adhered to (Jos. Wars, 4:205). Herod's Temple itself contained immersion baths in various places for the priests to use, even in the vaults beneath the court (Commentary to Tam. 26b; Tam. 1:1)."

Mystical Mikveh Immersion, The Jewish Background of Christian Baptism by Ron Moseley, Ph. D.

Baptism was extremely common to mark events and among the Nasarenes there were at least three forms of Baptism, or what was called the mikveh.

  1. RISHAMA BAPTISM was performed daily with a covered head, just before sunrise and before all religious ceremonies.
  2. TAMASHA BAPTISM was simple triple immersion in the river.
  3. MASBUTA BAPTISM: The third ablution, or ‘full baptism

Baptism and Provision

Seeing Through the Eyes of Jesus: His Revolutionary View of Reality and His Transcendent Significance for Faith was written by Rev. Dr. John F. Baggett who is a graduate of Kentucky Wesleyan College and Vanderbilt Divinity School. He holds a Masters in the Anthropology of Religion and a Ph.D. in Psychiatric Anthropology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

He writes:

“Once again, it is important to understand the intent of the law. The commandment to honor fathers and mothers was not simply intended to ensure the right relationships between parents and children while the children were growing up. It was also intended as the social welfare system of the day which assured that the aging and elderly parents received compassionate care and support.”
“In religious zeal, some Pharisees were allowed to circumvent their responsibility to provide for their parents by declaring the resources that would have gone to that purpose as “dedicated to God.” By seeking their own personal holiness at the expense of the welfare of their parents through the declaration of Corban, they in fact made the commandment meaningless for they had avoided its purpose. Social responsibility for those in need was the intent of the Law. Some Pharisees violated that intent by placing their own desires for personal righteousness above social responsibility.”
Acts 6:1 "And in those days, when the number of the disciples was multiplied, there arose a murmuring of the Grecians against the Hebrews, because their widows were neglected in the daily ministration."
John 9:22 "These [words] spake his parents, because they feared the Jews: for the Jews had agreed already, that if any man did confess that he was Christ, he should be put out of the synagogue [excluded from sacred assemblies of Israelites, excommunicated]...The man answered and said unto them, Why herein is a marvellous thing, that ye know not from whence he is, and yet he hath opened mine eyes. 31 Now we know that God heareth not sinners: but if any man be a worshipper of God, and doeth his will, him he heareth... And they cast him out."
John 9:35 "Jesus heard that they had cast him out; and when he had found him, he said unto him, Dost thou believe on the Son of God? 36 He answered and said, Who is he, Lord, that I might believe on him? 37 And Jesus said unto him, Thou hast both seen him, and it is he that talketh with thee. 38 And he said, Lord, I believe. And he worshipped him. 39 And Jesus said, For judgment I am come into this world, that they which see not might see; and that they which see might be made blind. 40 And some of the Pharisees which were with him heard these words, and said unto him, Are we blind also? 41 Jesus said unto them, If ye were blind, ye should have no sin: but now ye say, We see; therefore your sin remaineth."
John 10:1 "Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that entereth not by the door into the sheepfold, but climbeth up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber. 2 But he that entereth in by the door is the shepherd of the sheep. 3 To him the porter openeth; and the sheep hear his voice: and he calleth his own sheep by name, and leadeth them out."

What is God writing on Your Heart?

From the preface the Covenants of the gods:

"This book is a beginning. It is not intended to supply an answer. “And the King shall answer…”(Mt. 25:40). The quotes are not meant to establish an authority in your mind. “Little children, let no man deceive you…” (1 Jn 3:7). The use of logic is not to lead you. “Let no man deceive you with vain words…” (Eph 5:6). Any teaching of established doctrines of men is impugned, “lest in vain we teach for doctrines the commandments of men” Mt. 15:9). Any advice that is taken from these writings was not intended."

Understanding the message of Christ is about revelation, not about eating from the tree of knowledge.

Matthew 16:17 And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed [it] unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven.

So what do we think about the modern Church that does not do what Jesus said nor have the Baptism of repentance.

Exodus 20:17 Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor any thing that [is] thy neighbour’s.
Matthew 19:17 And he said unto him, Why callest thou me good? there is none good but one, that is, God: but if thou wilt enter into life, keep the commandments.
John 14:15 If ye love me, keep my commandments.
John 15:10 If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father’s commandments, and abide in his love.
1 John 2:3 And hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his commandments.
1 John 3:22 And whatsoever we ask, we receive of him, because we keep his commandments, and do those things that are pleasing in his sight.
1 John 5:2 -3 For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous.
Revelation 12:17 And the dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, which keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ.
Luke 22:25 And he said unto them, The kings of the Gentiles exercise lordship over them; and they that exercise authority upon them are called benefactors. But ye shall not be so:

Whether Barbara is right or not is irrelevant when we come to His words "But ye shall not be so:"

Yes it would be nice to have more evidence but what is God writing on your heart?


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