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Spit; Spittle

SPIT; SPITTLE

spit, spit'-l (yaraq, roq; (em)ptuo):

Spitting in a person's face indicated gross contempt (Numbers 12:14; Deuteronomy 25:9; Job 30:10; Isaiah 50:6; Matthew 26:67; 27:30, etc.); when performed by an unclean person it produced defilement (Leviticus 15:8) which necessitated washing the clothes and a bath. When David allowed his spittle (rir) to run down over his beard, it was his purpose to behave like a lunatic (1 Samuel 21:13). "Till I swallow down my spittle" (Job 7:19) has the same import as the English "in the twinkling of an eye" (1 Corinthians 15:52). Spittle was used by our Lord in restoring sight and speech (Mark 7:33; John 9:6) as signifying His will to cure. It was a widespread belief that spittle, accompanied with magical formulas, possessed medicinal qualities. "Oil" possessed a similar virtue. (Mark 6:13; James 5:14).

T. Lewis


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Bibliography Information
Orr, James, M.A., D.D. General Editor. "Entry for 'SPIT; SPITTLE'". "International Standard Bible Encyclopedia". 1915.