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And so, all the way along through the prophets, in repeated emphasis of the incompleteness of the bloodcovenanting symbols in the ritual sacrifices.

Concerning the very rite of circumcision, which was the token of Abraham's covenant of blood-friendship with the Lord, the Israelites were taught that its spiritual value was not in the formal surrender of a bit of flesh, and a few drops of blood, in ceremonial devotedness to God, but in its symbolism of the implicit surrender of the whole life and being, in hearty covenant with God. "Behold, unto the Lord thy God belongeth the heaven, and the heaven of heavens, the earth with all that therein is. Only the Lord had a delight in thy fathers to love them, and he chose their seed after them, even you above all peoples as at this day. Circumcise therefore the foreskin of your heart, and be no more stiff-necked."1 "And it shall come to pass, when all these things are come upon thee, the blessings and the curse which I have set before thee, and thou shalt call them to mind among all the nations, whither the Lord thy God hath driven thee, and shalt return unto the Lord thy God, and shalt obey his voice according to all that I command thee this day, thou and thy children, with all thine heart, and with all thy soul; that then the Lord thy God will turn thy captivity, and have compassion upon thee, and will return and

1 Deut. 10: 14-16.



gather thee from all the peoples, whither the Lord thy God hath scattered thee. And the Lord thy

God will circumcise thine heart, and the heart of thy seed, to love the Lord thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, that thou mayest live."1 And when this has come to pass, the true seed of Abraham, circumcised in heart, shall be in the covenant of blood-friendship with God.

So, also, with the phylacteries as the record of the blood-covenant of the passover, they had a value only as they represented a heart-remembrance of that covenant, by their wearers. Says Solomon, in the guise of Wisdom.

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My son, forget not my law;

But let thine heart keep my commandments.

Let not mercy and truth forsake thee:

Bind them about thy neck;

Write them upon the table of thy heart;

So shalt thou find favor and good understanding

In the sight of God and man." 4

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And my law as the apple of thine eye.

Bind them upon thy fingers;

Write them upon the table of thine heart.” 5

And the prophet Jeremiah foretells the recognition of this truth in the coming day of better things:

1 Deut. 30: 1-6.

3 Rom. 2: 26-29; Phil. 3: 3.

2 Gal. 3: 7-9; Rom. 4: II, 12. 4 Prov. 3: 1-4. 5 Prov. 7: 2, 3.

"Behold the days come, saith the Lord,

That I will make a new covenant

With the house of Israel and with the house of Judah:

Not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers.

In the day that I took them by the hand,

To bring them out of the land of Egypt

[That covenant was the blood-covenant of the passover; of which the phylacteries were a token.]

Which my covenant they brake,

Although I was an husband unto them [a lord over them] saith

the Lord;

But this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of


After those days, saith the Lord;

I will put my law in their inward parts,

And in their heart will I write it:

[Instead of its being written as now, outside of them, on their hand and on their forehead.]

And I will be their God,

And they shall be my people.
For I will forgive their iniquity,

And their sin will I remember no more." 1

The blood-covenant symbols of the Mosaic law all pointed to the possibility of a union of man's spiritual nature with God; but they did not in themselves either assure or indicate that union as already accomplished; nor did they point the way to it, as yet made clear. They were only "a shadow of the things to come.'

1 Jer. 31: 31-34.


2 Col. 2: 17.



Another gleam of the primitive truth, that blood is life and not death, and that the transference of blood is the transference of life, is found in the various Mosaic references to the goal (i), the person who is authorized to obtain blood for blood as an act of justice, in the East. And another proof of the prevailing error in the Western mind, through confounding blood with death, and justice with punishment, is the common rendering of the term goel, as "avenger," or "revenger," in our English Bible, wherever that term applies to the balancing of a blood account; although the same Hebrew word is in other connections commonly translated "redeemer," or "ransomer."4

Lexicographers are confused over the original import of the word goel;5 all the more, because of this confusion in their minds over the import of blood in its relation to death and to justice. But it is agreed on all hands, that, as a term, the word was, in the East, applied to that kinsman whose duty it was to secure 1 Num. 35: 12; Deut. 19: 6, 12; Josh. 20: 3, 5, 9.

2 Num. 35: 19, 21, 24, 25, 27; 2 Sam. 14: II.

3 Job 19: 25; Psa. 19: 14; 78: 35; Prov. 23: II; Isa. 41: 14; 43 14; 44: 6, 24; 47: 4; 48: 17; 49: 7, 26; 54: 5, 8; 59: 20; 60: 16; 63: 16; Jer. 50: 34.

* Comp. Isa. 51: 10; Jer. 31: II.

5 "A term of which the original import is uncertain.

The very

obscurity of its etymology testifies to the antiquity of the office which it denotes." (Speaker's Com. at Num. 35: 12.)

justice to the injured, and to restore, as it were, a normal balance to the disturbed family relations. Oehler well defines the goel as "that particular relative whose special duty it was to restore the violated family integrity, who had to redeem not only landed property that had been alienated from the family (Lev. 25: 25 ff.), or a member of the family that [who] had fallen into slavery (Lev. 25: 47 ff.), but also the blood that had been taken away from the family by murder."1 Hence, in the event of a depletion of the family by the loss of blood-the loss of a life-the goel had a responsibility of securing to the family an equivalent of that loss, by other blood, or by an agreed payment for its value. His mission was not vengeance, but equity. He was not an avenger, but a redeemer, a restorer, a balancer. And in that light, and in that light alone, are all the Oriental customs in connection with blood-cancelling seen to be consistent.

All through the East, there are regularly fixed tariffs for blood-cancelling; as if in recognition of the relative loss to a family, of one or another of its supporting members. This idea, of the differences in ran

1 Cited from Herzog's B. Cycl., in Keil and Delitzsch's Bib. Com. on the Pent., at Num. 35: 9-34.

2 See Niebuhr's Beschreibung von Arabien, p. 32 f.; Burckhardt's Beduinen und Wahaby, pp. 119-127; Lane's Thousand and One Nights, I., 431, note; Pierotti's Customs and Traditions of Palestine, pp. 220-227; Mrs. Finn's "The Fellaheen of Palestine," in Surv. of West Pal., "Special Papers," pp. 342-346.

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