cutting in the Bible

Cutting of living flesh in various ways was an idolatrous practice related to false god worship, a sacrife to the gods, or an attempt to receive divine aid or protection, or a way of displaying one’s devotion to these dieties.

“So they cried aloud, and cut themselves, as was their custom, with knives and lances, until the blood gushed out on them.” —1 Kings 18:28 NKJV

“You are the sons of the Lord your God; you shall not cut yourselves nor shave your forehead for the sake of the dead.” —Deuteronomy 14:1 NASB

The Israelites were commanded not to imitate this practice (Leviticus 19:28; 21:5; Deuteronomy 14:1).

The tearing of the flesh from grief and anguish of spirit in mourning for the dead was regarded as a mark of affection (Jeremiah 16:6; 41:5; 48:37).

Allusions are made in Revelation (Rev. 13:16; 17:5; 19:20) to the practice of printing marks on the body, to indicate allegiance to a deity.

We find also references to it, thrugh in a different direction, by Paul (Galatians 6:17) and by Ezekiel (Ezek. 9:4).

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Article Version: July 1, 2021