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Mercury's day (Mercredi), Woden's day, or Wednesday; next to Jupiter's day, Jove's day (Jeudi), Thor's day, or Thursday; to Venus's day, Vendredi (Veneris dies), Freya's day, or Friday; and so to Saturday again. That the day devoted to the most evil and most powerful of all the deities of the Sabdans should be set apart —first as one on which it was unlucky to work, and afterwards as one on which it was held to be sinful to work—was but the natural outcome of the superstitious belief, that the planets were gods ruling the fates of men and nations. It is, however, obvious that the Jews, or rather those from whom they derived their special religious observances, were taught to find a worthier motive for their Sabbath rest. Yet, of the connection between the Jewish and the astrologic and sabaistic Sabbath, there could be no manner of doubt, even were there not the evidence now to be considered, which indicates that all the Jewish festivals and fasts were of astronomical origin.

It must, in the first place, be obvious to any one who considers the matter with the least degree of attention, that the Jewish ceremonial worship, with all its complicated arrangements, must have been in existence long before the exodus. No reasoning mind can for a moment imagine, that such a system could have been devised in a lifetime, or a generation, far less during such a period as that in which the Jewish people were wandering between Egypt and Palestine-assuming the description of the exodus to be in its outlines true, however manifestly inexact in details. But we are not left to infer this, from the obvious considerations suggested by experience as the origin of ceremonial observances among other people. There is abundant evidence to show, that the Jewish ceremonial system was derived either directly from the Assyrians (who may have received it still earlier from Hindoo sources) or more probably from Assyria, through the Egyptians. As I have pointed out elsewhere," the description of the Ark of the Covenant, of the method of sacrifices, of the priestly ornaments, &c., indicates in the clearest manner, an Egyptian or Assyrian origin. The cherubim, figures

* In like manner the day of Venus, Friday, was a day for marrying and giving in marriage, and though our modern customs make the day of marriage the day also for starting on a journey (even that, however, showing evidence of astronomical origin, in its customary length as the "moon of honey,”) it was the reverse in ancient times, so that Friday would be of all days in the week the one regarded as least suited for starting on a journey. We see some trace of this association in Deuteronomy, chap. xx., v. 7, “What man is there that hath betrothed a wife ? let him go and return unto his house."

which united, as Calmet has shown, the body of the ox or lion with the wings of an eagle, are common in Assyrian sculptures. The oracle of the temple differed only from some of the chambers of Nimrod and Khorsabad, in the substitution of 'palm trees' for the sacred tree of Assyrian sculptures, and open flowers for the Assyrian tulip-shaped ornament. Layard in his Nineveh and Babylon (p. 643) states further that in the Assyrian halls, the winged human-headed bulls were on the side of the wall, and their wings, like those of the cherubim, touched one another in the midst of the house.' The dimensions of these figures were in some cases nearly the same, viz., fifteen feet square. The doors were also carved with cherubim and palm trees, and open flowers, and thus, with the other parts of the building, corresponded with those of the Assyrian palaces. On the walls of Nineveh, the only addition appears to have been the introduction of the human form and the image of the king, which were an abomination to the Jews. The pomegranates and lilies of Solomon's temple must have been nearly identical with the usual Assyrian ornament, in which—and particularly at Khorsabad—the pomegranate frequently takes the place of the tulip and the cone. .. To complete the analogy between the two edifices, it would appear that Solomon was seven years building the temple, and Sennacherib about the same time building his great palace at Konyunjik.” It may also be mentioned here that the remarkable breast-plate worn by the Jewish high-priest was derived directly from the Egyptians. In the often repeated“ picture of judgment,” the deceased Egyptian is seen conducted by the god Horus, while Annubis places on one of the balances a vase supposed to contain his good actions, and in the other is the emblem of Thmèi, the goddess of Truth, which was also worn on the judicial breast-plate. In fact the Hebrew word Thummim, according to Wilkinson (“ Manners and Customs of the Ancient Egyptians”) is a plural form of the word Thmèi.

And now let us examine the Jewish sacrifices offered up at various feasts and fasts, or otherwise at stated times. We may conveniently follow the account given in the Book of Numbers, chaps. xxviii. and xxix., though the reader will do well to consult also Leviticus, chaps. xxiii., xxv., &c., and Deuteronomy, chaps. XV. and xvi. These accounts, though probably written by different persons, and at widely different times, agree substantially together, -and indeed, would seem to have passed under revision by one person (before the time of Ezra the scribe. See the Book of Nehemiah, chap. viii.)

At the very outset, we find evidence that the sacrifices were not originally offered to the Almighty Being, who works in and through all things, but were devised as parts of a system of nature worship, (primarily, it would seem, a system of Sun worship). For we read, “ The Lord spake unto Moses,” saying, “ Command the children of Israel, and say unto them, My offering and my bread for my sacrifices made by fire, for a sweet savour unto me, shall ye observe to offer unto me in their due season.” The conception that the savour of cooked flesh could be sweet to an Almighty, All-wise, and Omnipotent Being, belongs as completely to the childhood of religion as does the idea, that such a Being could under any conditions need the rest and refreshment mentioned in Exodus, chap. xxxi., v. 17. The use of fire also in sacrificial observances belongs essentially to Sun worship and the associated system of Fire worship.

The first sacrifice is the daily sacrifice, or the continual burnt offering. “This is the offering made by fire which ye shall offer unto the Lord: two lambs of the first year without spot day by day, for a continual burnt offering; the one lamb shalt thou offer in the morning, and the other lamb shalt thou offer at even.” Flour and oil also were offered for the continual burnt offering. There was also, precisely as in pagan sacrifices, a libation—“In the holy place shalt thou cause the strong wine to be poured unto the Lord for a drink offering."

We have here manifestly those sacrifices to the rising and setting sun which formed so characteristic a feature of Sun worship.

Secondly, on the Sabbath-day, besides the continual burnt offering, there were offered “two lambs of the first year without spot and two tenth deals of flour for a meat offering, mingled with oil and the drink offering thereof." This may be regarded as partly derived from sacrifices originally offered to Saturn; * partly from

* There seems to have been a continual tendency on the part of the Jews to fall back into the Sabaistic superstitions from which their lawgivers had tried to withdraw them. “God turned,” says Stephen (Acts vii., v. 42), “and gave them up to the worship of the host of heaven; as it is written in the book of the prophets, 0 ye house of Israel, have ye offered to me slain beasts and sacrifices, forty years in the wilderness? Yea, ye took up the tabernacle of Moloch, and the star of your god Remphan, figures which ye made to worship them.” In the passage referred to by Stephen, Amos says Chiun, not Remphan. Grotius maintains that Remphan is the same as Rimmon, the god worshipped by Naaman; and Rimmon signifies "elevated" (lit., a pomegranate), and is understood by Grotius to refer to Saturn, the highest of the planets. (Saturn was always so called by the astrologers. Even in Galileo's time the usage remained, so that, when he announced the peculiar appearance presented by Saturn in his telescope, he wrote, Altissimum planetam tergeminum

the worship of the moon, which certainly was not unknown to the Jewish people. In fact, it is noteworthy that in the Book of Job, where no mention whatever is made of the Sabbath and Sabbath rest, the worship of the sun and moon is referred to in terms implying that it was common in Job's time, though Job himself had risen superior to the superstitions of Sabaism. “If,” says Job, “I beheld the sun when it shined, or the moon walking in brightness, and my heart hath been secretly enticed, or my mouth hath kissed my hand (the token of worship), this were also an iniquity to be punished by the judge, for I should have denied the God that is above.” A man is not secretly enticed to unfamiliar forms of worship, or to forms not commonly practised by those among whom he lives.* Moreover, it is evident from the varied reasons assigned for keeping the Sabbath holy, that the observance had originally belonged to another cult than that in which the lawgivers of Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy endeavoured to train the Jewish people. In Leviticus xxiii., they were simply told that the day is an holy convocation, the Sabbath of the Lord; just as in chap. xxv. they were told that the seventh year was a Sabbath for the Lord, and that the jubilee was to be holy unto them. In Exodus xx. 11, they were told that the day was to be kept holy, because the Allpowerful God rested on the seventh day. In Deuteronomy v. 14, they were told that God commanded them to keep the Sabbath day, because He had brought them out of the land of Egypt “through a mighty hand, and by a stretched-out arm.”

In passing, it may be noticed that the Assyrian tablets indicate a weekly resting-day, called the Sabbat, but it was of much earlier date than the Jewish, belonging to the time before the week and the month had been separated. Thus, the 7th, 14th, 21st, and 28th days of each month were days of Sabbat, or rest, and also the 19th day, or the 49th day from the beginning of the previous month, so that this 19th, or mid month rest, corresponded to the Jewish “ week of weeks.”

observavi). The word Chiun denotes “a pedestal,” and is considered equivalent to Chevan or Kevan, the Saturn of the Arabians. Bonfrère considers that Moloch was also Saturn, because children were sacrificed to Moloch, and Saturn was described as devouring his own children.

* Compare Deuteronomy, iv. 19. “ Lest thou lift up thine eyes unto heaven, and when thou seest the sun, and the moon, and the stars, even all the host of heaven, shouldest be driven to worship them, and serve them.” It is manifest from this how strongly the Jews still felt the influence of the Sabaistic superstitions from which their lawgivers were attempting to raise them.

In the third place, sacrifices were offered in the beginning of the inonths, that is at the time of new moon. Spencer (Rit., iii., 1) has shown that the Hebrews originally began their month when the new moon first appeared; but, later, they adopted a different system. Tirin observes that the Jews observed the lunar system, and that their months consisted of 29 and 30 days alternately, giving a period of 29} days for the lunar month, or within about threequarters of an hour of its real length. Hence, the new moons were called the Sabbaths of the thirtieth, or the thirtieth Sabbaths. Thus Horace says, in Satire I., 9, lines 68-70 :

“Memini bene, sed meliore Tempore dicam ; hodie tricesima Sabbata : vin' tu

Curtis Judæis oppedere ?"'* Macrobius mentions that the Greeks, Romans, Egyptians, Arabians etc., worshipped the moon (Sat. I., xv.), and it is obvious from many, passages in the Bible that, despite the care with which the Jewish lawgivers attempted to put an end to all forms of Sabaism, the Jews were prone to return to that moon-worship, from which the feast of the new moon had its origin.t Indeed, I have been told that to this day there are Jews, who on certain special occasions (as during the feast of tabernacles, etc.,) offer that tribute of reverence to the moon, which Job regarded as a denial of "the God that is above."

So far as the offerings at the feast of the new moon were concerned, we might infer that the Sabbath of the new moon was originally held to be more important than the week-day Sabbath. Instead of two lambs, as at the weekly Sabbath, there were offered at the feast of the new moon two young bullocks, and one ram, and seven lambs; instead of two tenth deals of flour, fifteen tenth deals; instead of half a hin of wine, more than two hins were offered at the monthly Sabbath. Even if we take into account the greater frequency of weekly Sabbaths (in about the proportion of 59 to 14), we still find that the monthly offerings taken throughout the year,

“I remember well, but I will tell you at a more suitable time, to-day is the thirtieth Sabbath; do you wish to offer an insult to the circumcised Jews ?" The words “tricesima Sabbata” are often absurdly interpreted, “the thirtieth Sabbath in the year;" in reality they mean the Sabbath of the new moon.

+ This seems indicated especially in Jeremiah, vii., 17, 18—“Seest thou not what they do in the cities of Judah, and in the streets of Jerusalem ? The children gather wood, and the fathers kindle the fire, and the women knead their dough to make cakes to the queen of heaven, and to pour out drink-offerings unto other gods.” But some assert that the queen of heaven is not the moon, but Athor, parent of the uni.


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