Sacred Prostitution - Ancient Near East - in The Hebrew Bible

In The Hebrew Bible

The Hebrew Bible uses two different words for prostitute, zonah (זנה)‎ and qedesha or kedeshah (קדשה)‎. The word zonah simply meant an ordinary prostitute or loose woman. But the word kedeshah literally means "consecrated (feminine form)", from the Semitic root q-d-sh (קדש)‎ meaning "holy" or "set apart".

Whatever the cultic significance of a kedeshah to a follower of the Canaanite religion, the Hebrew Bible makes it clear that cultic prostitution had no place in Yahwism. Thus Deuteronomy 23:18-19 tells followers:

None of the daughters of Israel shall be a kedeshah, nor shall any of the sons of Israel be a kadesh.
You shall not bring the hire of a prostitute (zonah) or the wages of a dog (kelev) into the house of the Lord your God to pay a vow, for both of these are an abomination to the Lord your God.

Stephen O. Murray writes that biblical passages ban qdeshim and link them with gods and 'forms of worship detested by orthodox followers of Yahweh'

Celia Brewer Marshall, and Celia B. Sinclair have written that 'the ethical demands of the covenant preclude worshiping Yahweh in licentious sexual rites (sacred prostitution)"

The meaning of the male form kadesh or qadesh is not entirely clear. The Hebrew word kelev (dog) in the next line may also signify a male dancer or prostitute.

Read more about this topic:  Sacred Prostitution, Ancient Near East

Other articles related to "in the hebrew bible, hebrew, in the":

Sarah In Rabbinic Literature - In The Hebrew Bible - Death
... Sarah, who died at the age of 127, is the only woman in Hebrew scriptures whose age is given ... Abraham buried her in the Cave of the Patriarchs (also called the Cave of Machpelah), near Hebron which he had purchased, along with the adjoining field, from Ephron the ...
Michael Servetus - Works
... Written in Latin, it also includes words in Greek and in Hebrew in the body of the text whenever he wanted to stress the original meaning of a word from Scripture ... Servetus defends his friend in the first parts of the work ... In the second part he talks of a medical plant and its properties ...
Flood Geology - Biblical Basis
... geology is based on a literal interpretation of the flood narrative in the Book of Genesis (Genesis 6–9) ... In the 600th year of Noah's life God opens the "fountains of the deep" and the "windows of Heaven" and causes rain to fall on the earth for 40 days and nights ... contains a chronology which places the Flood in the year 1656 after Creation in the standard Hebrew text (the Masoretic text - other texts have slightly different ...
Melchizedek - In Judaism - In The Hebrew Bible, Genesis 14 - Priest of El Elyon
... Genesis 1418 introduces Melchizedek a "Priest of the Most High God" (El Elyon), a term which is re-used in 1419, 20, 22 ... The term "Most High" is used another twenty times of the God of the Israel in the Psalms ...

Famous quotes containing the word hebrew:

    ...a man of uncircumcized lips...
    —Bible: Hebrew (RSV)