It is the purpose of any research paper on baptism to discuss the role that baptism has played in the Jewish and Christian faiths. Paper Masters can provide research on the sacrament of baptism and explicate the ritual for any religious studies course or theology paper that requires bible topics discussed.
Baptism was in use as a Jewish ritual long before Christianity took it up and made it one of the central sacraments of the church, but, while the practice of immersion carried some of the same connotations in Jewish religious practice as it later came to carry in Christian religious practice, baptism was by no means as important and fundamental to Judaism as it became to Christianity.
BAPTISM: ETYMOLOGY AND CONTENT
The word baptize does not appear in the Old Testament ). It derives from the Greek word, baptein, which is the verb "to dip".
Rituals of immersion and washing were practiced in many ancient religions and the symbolic meaning of these rituals involved elements later seen in Christian practice. Inter alia the symbolic content of immersion and/or washing included purification from sin, the entering into a new life, entering into a religious community, entering a holy area, purification from the world of the profane, and purification from the taint attached to an encounter with something placed under taboo.
BAPTISM AND JUDAISM
Leviticus 16:3-4 required that when Aaron entered a holy place in order to present a sin offering, he had to be attired in holy garments and, before so attiring himself, he had to, "wash his flesh in water." Leviticus 15 has a host of things deemed unclean which were to be either washed themselves or required the washing of one's person after one had contact with them. This perhaps constitutes the beginnings of the conception of washing and spiritual purification, a milestone on the road to the fully developed concept of baptism that developed in later Jewish and Christian notions of baptism as a form of purification and renewal.
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