Cleansing by Water and Spirit in the Dead Sea Scrolls and New Testament
Citation:Mills, Lynn Elizabeth, Cleansing by Water and Spirit in the Dead Sea Scrolls and New Testament, Trinity College Dublin.School of Religion, 2022
Thesis - Lynn E. Mills.pdf (PhD Thesis) 2.796Mb
This thesis seeks to fill a gap in Second Temple scholarship by giving sustained and focused attention to dual cleansing by water and Spirit in the Hebrew Bible, the Scrolls found at Qumran and New Testament literature. In the Hebrew Bible, Psalm 51 and Ezek 36:25–27 stand out as exemplars of the metaphor of cleansing, for the forgiveness of sins, and transformation or new creation of the person cleansed. The research presented here demonstrates that these passages exert influence on the Qumran discoveries, some other Second Temple compositions and the New Testament. Among the Scrolls, the Community Rule (1QS) and Hodayot (1QHa) in particular share common themes of moral cleansing and transformation with Psalm 51 and Ezekiel 36. These themes are also present among the New Testament writings, especially in the synoptic accounts of the baptism of John and the Pauline Epistles. John’s baptism is situated within ritual purification practices of Second Temple Judaism and compared to but not conflated with the ritual and moral cleansing of the Yaḥad. The weight of evidence shows that John’s audiences were familiar with the pairing of ritual and moral purification. Furthermore, they understood baptism with the Holy Spirit as an eschatological cleansing and transformation.
Author: Mills, Lynn Elizabeth
Publisher:Trinity College Dublin. School of Religion. Discipline of Religions and Theology
Type of material:Thesis
Availability:Full text available