Priestly Blessing

The Aaronic Blessing (Hebrew ברכת כהנים, birkat kohanim ) is the oldest surviving blessing of the Bible, who is spoken of Christianity as in worship of Judaism today. After Numbers 6.24 - 26EU God revealed to Moses the text. Aaron, the older brother of Moses, and his sons, the ancestors of all the Israelite priests and high priest, shall be a blessing for all the people of Israel be applied. He stood on the context in close connection with the sacrificial cult in the Jerusalem temple, but can already be independent of which have been known.


Luther Bible 1984

In a frequently used variation, the last line says " The LORD lift up his countenance upon thee ... " versions are also common, where " you" and " you" is replaced by " you", as the second person singular in Hebrew meant collectively is present and includes the whole people.

Liturgical use

The Aaronic blessing is particularly ( there spoken only by a Kohen - standing, facing the worshipers and with outstretched arms ) used in Judaism and in Protestant churches at the end of worship. In the liberal or progressive Judaism of the priestly blessing is spoken in each case as a final blessing after a service of prayer Chief / Chief of prayer. Here, the present still bear their tallit ( prayer shawl ), which is often already taken in Orthodox Judaism after the last official prayer. The Aaronic blessing also occupies an important place in the home Shabbat celebration, in which it is spoken by the father every child. For hand and finger position on exercise of blessing see Kohanim.

During the Middle Ages the text in the church was rarely used. It was only when Martin Luther introduced the blessings of 1525 in the Protestant church service, took him John Calvin and Ulrich Zwingli.

Today it is in some Protestant churches reserved the ordained ministers to speak to him. Lay, believers see him included, that is a blessing Please, where " you / you" is replaced by "us", the same applies to the progressive- liberal directions in Judaism, in which it can be also spoken in the plural form.

Archaeological evidence

The Aaronic blessing is also in accordance with the oldest known textual witnesses of the biblical text. There are two tiny scrolls of almost pure silver, which were discovered in 1979 in a family grave in the Hinnom Valley below the south-western wall of the Old City of Jerusalem. The dating is controversial and varies between the 7th and 2nd centuries BC The fragile silver roles were opened after three years in a complex process, and then the engraved inside font be deciphered. This is 400 years older than any other known oldest Bible manuscripts from Qumran, but confirmed for these three verses almost exactly the text.