Did Yeshua take a Nazarite Vow?

We are going to give our opinion on this Ibecause this question comes around every so often. The Nazarite Vow can be found in Numbers 6.1-21 and is when a person is totally dedicated to the Lord by not consuming anything from the grape, letting their hair grow and not touching the dead. It comes from the word “nazir” which means to be set apart. This vow can be entered into voluntarily, like the apostle Paul in Acts 18.18, where it says he cut his hair because he was coming out of a vow, or it can be made for them at birth like Samuel, Samson and John the Baptist. The only place there is an indication that Yeshua might have taken a Nazarite Vow was at the Last Supper (it was not a Passover) when he said he would not drink from the fruit of the vine until everything was fulfilled and accomplished. This vow can be for whatever time the person wants. It can be for a day, week, month, years or a lifetime. Now, if Yeshua took this vow, why would he do it? To understand this, we have to go back to the Garden of Eden. When Adam (meaning “blood of God”) was in the garden, the Lord commanded him not to eat from a certain tree, and Adam had the “kivod” or glory of God as his covering and there was no death before the fall. The Bible does not say what fruit Adam was to refrain from, but some think that the “tree” was a grape vine (vines were called “tree’s in Ezek 15.2) and the vine may have looked different before the fall. Judges 9.8-15 lists four different trees: the olive, fig, the vine and thorn bush. All aspects of the Nazarite Vow go back to Eden. To refrain from the grape may be a clue that Adam was not to eat from the vine. Letting the hair grow in the Nazarite Vow had to do with restoring the covering that Adam lost after he sinned. And since there was no death in the garden, the one entering the vow cannot touch the dead. God planted two trees in the midst of the garden, the Tree of Life and the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. The Tree of Life may have been an Olive Tree because Noah sent a dove out of the Ark and it returned with and olive leaf, signifying life had returned to the world (Gen 8.11). The lights of the Menorah were fueled by olive oil (Exo 27.20). The Holy of Holies in Solomon’s Temple was made of olive wood, so were the two cherubim guarding the entrance (1 Kings 16.23,31). When Yeshua returns to set up the Kingdom, he stands on the Mount of Olives. Look for how the olive tree is associated with life in the Scripture. The other tree was the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. Adam was forbidden to eat from it and so are those in a Nazarite Vow. Adam introduced sin into the world by eating from it, and the second Adam Yeshua symbolizes the taking away of sin by the fruit of the vine. Yeshua said we should celebrate this sacrifice by drinking the wine or grape juice. Sin came in with the grape, and redemption is symbolized by the grape from the True Vine, Yeshua (John 15.1). Even though the grape in the garden did not give the true knowledge of him, the True Vine has all knowledge and wisdom hidden in him (Col 2.2-3). He is the source of all knowledge. So, the Nazarite was not to eat of the grape, let his hair grow and not to touch the dead, all associated with Eden. This also relates to Yeshua because a garden was near to where he was crucified. He had thorns on his head because the ground was cursed because of the first sin and he was nailed to a tree. If Yeshua took a Nazarite Vow, it was only for a day and it was because he had to restore Eden, which is an idiom for the Kingdom of God. So, did he drink from the fruit of the vine, ending his vow and putting himself in the same situation Adam did? By entering the Nazarite Vow, he totally separates himself to God to accomplish the redemption. He refused the wine while on the cross until the end, when he looks around and sees that all things have been accomplished (John 19.28-30). He says he is thirsty and they give him wine to drink and he takes it. He then dies right after drinking it because his Nazarite Vow is over and redemption has been accomplished. There is much more to this concept, but it is our belief that it is very probable that Yeshua entered into a Nazarite Vow before his crucifixion. There are some well-meaning believers today that erroneously enter into a Nazarite Vow, but that would only work if you were in a state of ritual purity because everyone has been defiled by the dead anyway and there is no way to gain ritual purity today to even enter into it. Also, there are certain rituals that need to be performed when coming out of the vow that can’t be performed today either, so entering into a Nazarite Vow is impossible in our opinion.

Posted in Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, The Tanach, Understanding the New Testament

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