Burying was among the Jews the only mode of disposing of corpses ( Genesis 23:19 ; 25:9 ; Genesis 35:8 Genesis 35:9 , etc.).
The first traces of burning the dead are found in 1 Samuel 31:12 . The burning of the body was affixed by the law of Moses as a penalty to certain crimes ( Leviticus 20:14 ; 21:9 ).
To leave the dead unburied was regarded with horror ( 1 Kings 13:22 ; 14:11 ; 16:4 ; 21:24 , etc.).
In the earliest times of which we have record kinsmen carried their dead to the grave ( Genesis 25:9 ; 35:29 ; Judges 16:31 ), but in later times this was done by others ( Amos 6:16 ).
Immediately after decease the body was washed, and then wrapped in a large cloth ( Acts 9:37 ; Matthew 27:59 ; Mark 15:46 ). In the case of persons of distinction, aromatics were laid on the folds of the cloth ( John 19:39 ; Compare John 12:7 ).
As a rule the burial (q.v.) took place on the very day of the death ( Acts 5:6 Acts 5:10 ), and the body was removed to the grave in an open coffin or on a bier ( Luke 7:14 ). After the burial a funeral meal was usually given ( 2 Samuel 3:35 ; Jeremiah 16:5 Jeremiah 16:7 ; Hosea 9:4 ).
These dictionary topics are from
M.G. Easton M.A., D.D., Illustrated Bible Dictionary, Third Edition,
published by Thomas Nelson, 1897. Public Domain, copy freely.
[B] indicates this entry was also found in Baker's Evangelical Dictionary
Bibliography InformationEaston, Matthew George. "Entry for Funeral". "Easton's Bible Dictionary". .