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4 Hope of Israel Ministries BIBLE Correspondence Course Lesson 15

The Ritual of Washing Ravening

The washing (ablution) of hands was not The word RAVENING is translated from
simply done for hygienic purposes, but the Greek word harpage (#724 in
constituted a CEREMONIOUS RITUAL Strong’s Concordance), meaning
strictly adhered to by the Judeans. It was “pillage.” It refers to the acts of robbery,
part of their TRADITIONARY LAW. The extortion, plunder, etc. -- a seizing by
Jewish Talmud puts the one eating with FORCE.
unwashed hands on the same plane as
one committing fornication, and states COMMENT: In the above verse the
that the one lightly esteeming hand word EXTORTION is rendered from the same
washing will perish from the earth. Greek word (#724) that was translated into the
word RAVENING in Luke 11:39. In both cases
reference is made to the greed and avarice of
5. What did the Messiah call the scribes Judean scribes and Pharisees who used, without
and Pharisees who promoted the tradition of restraint, their positions of power over the
washing the hands? Matthew 15:7; Mark 7:6. people to plunder them -- all under the pretense
6. In Mark 7:8, what did the Messiah of righteousness.
accuse these Judean leaders of laying aside?
What did he accuse them of holding on to? Excess

Appearing Clean The word EXCESS is translated from the
Greek word akrasia (#192 in Strong’s
1. Read Luke 11:37-41. According to
Concordance), meaning “want of
verse 37, with whom was Yeshua eating?
self-restraint.” It refers to a lack of
2. According to verse 38, what did the
Pharisees observe that made him marvel
3. In verse 39, what does the Messiah say The Judean tradition of “washing of
the inward part of the Pharisees is full of? hands,” as hypocritically practiced by the scribes
COMMENT: In the above verses and Pharisees, was nothing more than vain
Yeshua rebuked the Pharisees for their ceremonial ritualism used to put on an
hypocritical practice of making themselves appearance of purity and righteousness. In some
appear clean (pure; righteous) by OUTWARD cases it was INTENTIONAL DECEPTION to
ceremonial ritual while their true motives and hide inner wickedness. Others undoubtedly
desires were impure and unrighteous. While engaged in the ritual ignorantly, thinking it
appearing righteous and pure, they were actually would make them ceremonially righteous (a
robbing and stealing from the people. They were false TRADITION OF MEN taught to them).
nothing more than common thieves mas- Many professing Christians today
querading as pious, holy men, not unlike the practice VAIN ceremonial ritualism in one form
religious and political CHARLATANS of our or another (Catholicism would be a good
day. example of this). Although it is often completely
4. In Matthew 23:25, what does Yeshua nonsensical, they believe it is necessary to please
say the scribes and Pharisees are inwardly full YEHOVAH God.

Traditions and Practices of the Judeans
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