Similarities With Ancient Judaism

Coin issued by Mattathias Antigonus c 40 BCE.j...

Recently I was thinking some about similarities between ancient Judaism and Orthodox worship and piety.  I came up with this rough list of items.  I wonder if anyone out there would be able to add anything to the list.

Menorah on altar – Exodus 25:31-40
Icons – Dura Europos
8-day – naming – Luke 2:21
40-day – churching (Luke 2:22-40)
Incense – Ex 30, ps 141:2
priestly garments – ex 28:2-5
praying hours – Acts 3:1 –
feasts – Church has 12 major feasts per year.
weekly fasts – Mark 2:20, didache – Wed/Fri
Liturgical day starts at sunset
Gospel is processed like Torah
Saturday is still sabbath
Still use psalms as psalter/ tehillim
Bowing during prayers
Praying using set prayers
Dance of Isaiah?

Similarities With Ancient Judaism

7 thoughts on “Similarities With Ancient Judaism

  1. Dana Ames says:

    you may find some interesting stuff in the work of Margaret Barker. She’s an English Methodist who has focused her studies on the Temple. For a long time she did her work without reference to Orthodoxy, and I understand that when she first attended an O. Liturgy she had to pick her jaw up off the floor… She gave the annual Schmemann lecture at St Vlad’s last January. She has a web site with articles, but most of what I know of her I found at a friend’s web site:
    John has posted some of her work that’s not found on her site.

    It was reading Barker that convinced me of the authenticity of Orthodoxy’s antiquity and emergence from C1 Judaism.

    Many years! I would be happy to hear about your continued journey. Thanks.


  2. Mark says:

    Wonderful Dana. I’m particularly interested in what specifically of her’s that you found so convincing in your journey. Do you happen to remember?


  3. Dana Ames says:

    It was the aggregate: the seamless, organic connection of everything physical and otherwise, particularly in the Holy Place and the ritual, with all those threads leading back to 2TJudaism and beyond to the Tabernacle, with everything re-interpreted in light of the Cross and Resurrection of Jesus, and the meaning of it all – single elements and everything together. Of course, I was primed by having read N.T. Wright for several years 🙂 It was just so evident to me that Orthodox Liturgy, prayer, all the “ritual stuff” and its meaning could not possibly have been “made up” out of whole cloth, or put together by people who lived later than 1st century Jews, who said, “Hmmm, how can we do a religion around Jesus? I know – let’s take stuff from the Jewish Temple ritual!”

    I found Barker’s work near the end of my journey of inquiry into Orthodoxy; I didn’t start out looking for “the true church,” but after reading Barker I knew I had found it. You just don’t preserve worship with all those connections and all that meaning for +2000 years otherwise (even understanding that there was some kind of development to it, although “development” is not quite the right word).


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