Biblical Names

TammuzRitual Mourning

In Babylonia, the month Tammuz was established in honor of the eponymous god Tammuz, who originated as a Sumerian shepherd-god, Dumuzid or Dumuzi, the consort of Inanna and, in his Akkadian form, the parallel consort of Ishtar. The Levantine Adonis (“lord”), who was drawn into the Greek pantheon, was considered by Joseph Campbell among others to be another counterpart of Tammuz,[1] son and consort. The Aramaic name “Tammuz” seems to have been derived from the Akkadian form Tammuzi, based on early Sumerian Damu-zid.[citation needed] The later standard Sumerian form, Dumu-zid, in turn became Dumuzi in Akkadian.

Beginning with the summer solstice came a time of mourning in the Ancient Near East, as in the Aegean: the Babylonians marked the decline in daylight hours and the onset of killing summer heat and drought with a six-day “funeral” for the god. Recent discoveries reconfirm him as an annual life-death-rebirth deity: tablets discovered in 1963 show that Dumuzi was in fact consigned to the Underworld himself, in order to secure Inanna’s release,[2] though the recovered final line reveals that he is to revive for six months of each year (see below).

In cult practice, the dead Tammuz was widely mourned in the Ancient Near East. Locations associated in antiquity with the site of his death include both Harran and Byblos, among others. A Sumerian tablet from Nippur (Ni 4486) reads:

She can make the lament for you, my Dumuzid, the lament for you, the lament, the lamentation, reach the desert — she can make it reach the house Arali; she can make it reach Bad-tibira; she can make it reach Dul-šuba; she can make it reach the shepherding country, the sheepfold of Dumuzid

“O Dumuzid of the fair-spoken mouth, of the ever kind eyes,” she sobs tearfully, “O you of the fair-spoken mouth, of the ever kind eyes,” she sobs tearfully. “Lad, husband, lord, sweet as the date, […] O Dumuzid!” she sobs, she sobs tearfully.[3]

These mourning ceremonies were observed even at the very door of the Temple in Jerusalem in a vision the Israelite prophet Ezekiel was given, which serves as a Biblical prophecy which expresses Yahweh’s message at His people’s apostate worship of idols:

“Then he brought me to the door of the gate of the Lord’s house which was toward the north; and, behold, there sat women weeping for Tammuz. Then said he unto to me, ‘Hast thou seen this, O son of man? turn thee yet again, and thou shalt see greater abominations than these.” —Ezekiel 8:14-15

Ezekiel’s testimony is the only direct mention of Tammuz in the Hebrew Bible.

via Tammuz (deity) – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

BaptismTHE ORDINANCE OF WATER BAPTISM
The word “Baptism” is a transliteration of the Greek word BAPTIZO which means to immerse. In Hebrew it is referred to as a MIKVEH – an immersion. Basically it is an immersion into another substance, for the purpose of being saturated by it, such as water in this instance. The new covenant also presents the immersion of a believer “in the Spirit of God” and also “with Fire”. Matthew 3:11

THE ORDINANCE OF BAPTISM
Baptism, as it has been known in the gospel age, is not a new ordinance. In the text of Hebrews 6: 1-2, it is “baptisms” – plural, as there is more than one type of baptism in scripture. These are — 1. The baptism of creation to life – Genesis 1 & 7; 2 Peter 3: 6-7 2. The baptism of Moses from Egypt – Exodus 14:19-31; 1 Corinthians 10: 1-4 3. The baptism of Ritual Cleansing – Leviticus 8: 5-9; Numbers 8: 6-7; 19:13, 20 4. The baptism of John unto repentance – Matthew 3: 1-6 5. The baptism of Yeshua into His Body – Romans 6:3-5 6. The baptism in the Spirit of God for ministry – Matthew 3:11 & Luke 3:16 7. The baptism of fire for purification – Matthew 3:11 & Luke 3:16; 1 Peter 4:12-16
In the beginning, the creation in it’s disordered state was immersed in water and it was through the operation of the Spirit brooding upon the waters that He brought forth order out of chaos, and created new life. Genesis 1: 1-10 Continue reading

 

The Ancient Hebrew Language

The Hebrew Bible was written by Hebrews 2,500 to 3,500 years ago, whose culture and lifestyle were very different than our own. When we read the Word of God as a 20th Century American, our culture and lifestyle often influence our interpretation of the words and phrases.

The word rain is a good example of how culture can influence one’s view of a word. To a bride and groom preparing for an outdoor wedding, the news of rain has a negative meaning, but to the farmer in the middle of a drought, the same word has a positive meaning. For many of us, rain means a spoiled picnic but to the ancient Hebrews, rain meant life, for without it their nomadic life would end. Without a cultural understanding of the words in the Bible, much is missed or overlooked.

Many times our 20th century culture can influence definitions of words that were not intended by the original author. The Bible often refers to keeping and breaking God’s commands and covenant. To “keep” the commands of God is usually understood as to “obey” the commands, but this is not completely true as the Hebrew word “shamar” literally means to guard or protect. The breaking of the commands is usually understood as “disobeying” but the Hebrew word “Parar” literally means to trample underfoot.

A peoples language is very closely related to their culture, without an understanding of the Hebrew culture we cannot fully understand their language. To cross this cultural bridge, we need to understand the ancient Hebrew culture, lifestyle and language.

Ancient Hebrew Research Center – Home Page.

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