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Section suggestion: Notable Nazirites[edit]

My reason for suggesting the addition of this section is particularly with Samson in mind, as his superhuman strength was dependent on upholding his Nazirite vow, the Nazirite vow is a key component of his character/story. I believe this could be a valuable addition to the article. 2601:1C0:6D02:3C10:40A1:D6AB:F929:EFD2 (talk) 04:41, 6 June 2018 (UTC)


The following sourced text was recently deleted by someone who didn't like it. I have restored it (Wetman 21:39, 19 February 2006 (UTC)):

"The Nazarite is "holy unto the Lord" (Numbers 6:8) and must keep himself from becoming ritually unclean. The regulations which apply to him actually agree with those for the High Priest and for the priests during worship, as described in Leviticus and in Ezekiel. This vow required the man (and in the Hellenistic period the woman too) to observe the following:" (text resumes)

The following was inserted:

Becoming a Nazirite Both men and women are able to become a Nazirite. A person becomes a Nazirite by saying "I am a Nazir" or any similar statement. Even looking at a Nazir and saying "Me too" with the intention to be a Nazirite makes one a Nazirite. The vow can be for any duration as stated by the person when he or she makes the vow. Nevertheless, one cannot be a Nazirte for less than thrity days and must be in increments of at least a day."

This has no source and is given no context: who makes up these alleged rules nowadays, for a start? --Wetman 21:39, 19 February 2006 (UTC)

The source is the mishna Nazir, and the talmud nazir as well as the Mishneh Torah. If you can read Hebrew see the mishna [[1]] and the Mishna Torah [[2]] Nazirtie is a not a historical curiosity, but is a real law - see Halacha - practiced by Jews even to this day.
as far as what is in the current version, I don't understand the sentence:
The regulations which apply to him actually agree with those for the High Priest and for the priests during worship, as described in Leviticus and in Ezekiel.
Does this mean that they cannot become ritually impure. That is not true! A regular priest can become ritually impure for a close relative (a Nazirite cannot). And a high priest can become ritually impure for a abandoned course (a Nazirtie cannot)
And I disagree with this:
(and in the Hellenistic period the woman too)
is just not true. Women are and always were included in the laws of Nazirite. The verse itself states Numbers 6:1:
Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them: When either man or woman shall clearly utter a vow, the vow of a Nazirite, to consecrate himself unto the LORD
I know of know source that ever excluded women of this at any time. The Mishna and Talmud also state explicitly that women are included. as for:
(Queen Helena kept it for 14 years, Josephus writes some kept it for 30 days.)
it seems to be that the source is the Mishna is Nazir 3:5. which stated that Queen Helena made a Nazir vow for 7 year but had to redo three times because she became ritually impure. Hence she was a Nazirite for a total of 21 years.

It does not require explaining that "Nazirite" in the first millennium BCE may not follow precisely the same rules as it does in the talmudic tradition, or in modern practice. You might begin with an explanation of why "(or a woman)" is not an interpolation in translations of Numbers 6:1. Why not insert a subsection on the Mishnah passages that elaborate upon nazir, explaining it for the average Wikipedia reader, who is not expected to read Hebrew? And a section on Talmudic development of the practice. If you can re-edit this article to follow the historical development of this concept more closely, that will be excellent, and everyone will be grateful. --Wetman 18:14, 20 February 2006 (UTC)

I can explain the Orthodox Jewish perpective on Nazirite, but I don't know how to present that NPOV. According to Orthodox Judaism there was no "development of the practice" but is the same then as it is now. Are there any other sources for the laws of the Nazirite besides the verses themselves? In other words what should be stated in the introduction and what should be in the orthodox Jewish perspective section?
I look at more than a few bibles and I couldn't find one that doesn't say "or a woman" can you show be any bible that doesn't say "or a woman" or any source that excludes women from the laws of the Nazirite? Jon513 21:26, 20 February 2006 (UTC)

+:I have edited Nazirite 3.3 'Nazarites in the New Testament', and it now has all citations and sources noted. Can the notice saying that is does not have and needs citations now be removed? How is that done? Thanks. Linda Lee 06:25, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

recent changes[edit]

"and all intoxicants"[edit]

I removed the words "and all intoxicants" as they are POV. It is the Jewish tradition that the Nazirite CAN drink non-grape based intoxicants (see Mishneh Torah Nazir 5:1). I do not know of any sources that say that a Nazirtie cannot drink non-grape based intoxicants, but if there are it should be clearly presented as one of many views on the matter. Jon513 15:32, 22 February 2006 (UTC)

The Torah itself states that a Nazir is forbidden to consume all alcohol.
In Numbers 6:3 it states
"He shall separate [himself] from wine and strong drink, and shall drink no vinegar of wine, or vinegar of strong drink,"
I don't have a copy of the Mishne Torah, so could you quote it (both in Hebrew and English) where is states that a Nazir can consume non-wine alcohol.—The preceding unsigned comment was added by Brak (talkcontribs).
from Mishneh Torah Haphlah, Nazir (5:1):
א שלושה מינין אסורין לנזיר--הטומאה, והתגלחת, והיוצא מן הגפן בין פרי בין פסולת פרי. אבל השיכר של תמרים, או של גרוגרות, וכיוצא בהן--מותר לנזיר; "ושיכר" (במדבר ו,ג) זה שנאסר עליו בתורה, הוא השיכר של תערובת היין.
my own translation:
"There are three things forbidden to a Nazirite: ritual defialiment, shaving, and any grape derived product - whether from the fruit or the non-eatable parts. But from date wine or [some other source] or anything similar is permitted to the Nazirite. and "strong drink" (Numbers, 6:3) that is forbidden by the Bible is strong drink made from a combination of wine."
I can find the source in the Talmud if you insist on it. Jon513 12:25, 6 June 2007 (UTC)

Thanks for giving the text. I would very much like to see the Talmudic source for this. YOu won't need to quote it, just the reference will suffice.


The kesef mishneh quotes 34b. The conclusion of the talmud is not immediately apparent and deals with a "פרט וכלל ופרט אי אתה דן אלא כעין הפרט". I have not personally going through it. Jon513 15:04, 7 June 2007 (UTC)

I checked out 34b and many folios following and I didn't see any discussion on the issue. If you happen to find the reference please share it. But regardless to the statement being in the Talmud or not I think the best way to deal with this issue is to include both interpretations. So we should state that according to Rabbinical interpretation a Nazarite is not forbidden to comsume non-wine alcohol, but according to non-Rabbinical interpretation (such as Karaite and various Christian interpretation) a Nazarite is forbidden to consume any alcohol regardless of its source. This will keep the article free of bias.Brak 16:41, 8 June 2007 (UTC)

can you quote any sources (karaite or otherwise) that the Nazarite cannot drink any alcohol. There are plenty of websites that say as much, but it seems more like a case of many people misreading the verse than a genuine interpretation. Jon513 16:43, 9 July 2007 (UTC)

I found a recent change: Many later opinions comprise these views and explain that a nazirite is both good and bad had been changed to Many later opinions compromise between. Although I am not 100% sure either fit, comprise definately fits better, I also took out the word between, thinking this change makes more sense. however if anybody has a better understanding of the concept/word then please change it to something better! Soulnebula 02:22, 9 July 2007 (UTC)

I believe that I was the one who originally wrote the section and my intention was compromise though I might have mistype it. I think that it fit and makes sense, as the later opinions had an opinion between the two extremes. Jon513 16:43, 9 July 2007 (UTC)

(and in the Hellenistic period the woman too)[edit]

I don't know how this was ever put in. Women are and always were included in the laws of Nazirite. The verse itself states Numbers 6:1:

Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them: When either man or woman shall clearly utter a vow, the vow of a Nazirite, to consecrate himself unto the LORD

This is also stated in the jewishencyclopedia ("Women and slaves, who did not have full rights before the religious law, could take the Nazarite vow, but only with the consent of their husbands or owners,") and in the Catholic Encyclopedia ("According to the law in Num. (vi, 1-21) Nazarites might be of either sex.") and in many Jewish Works (Mishneh Torah and Mishna) Jon513 15:41, 22 February 2006 (UTC)

The regulations which apply to him...[edit]

I removed the phrase

The regulations which apply to him actually agree with those for the High Priest and for the priests during worship, as described in Leviticus and in Ezekiel.

This statement was partially copied from the Jewish Encyclopedia (As the Jewish Encyclopedia is public domain that is not a copy violation), the full statement read as follows

the regulations which apply to him actually agree with those for the high priest and for the priests during worship (Lev. x. 8 et seq., xxi.; Ezek. xliv. 21).

Leviticus (10:8) reads:

Do not drink wine nor strong drink, thou, nor thy sons with thee, when ye go into the tabernacle of the congregation, lest ye die: it shall be a statute for ever throughout your generations

The connection between the Nazirite's prohibition to drink wine and the prohibition of the priest to drink while serving is stated in the Talmud, but nevertheless this sentence is not for wikipedia for the following reasons

  1. The statement in the talmud is not a universal opinion. R' Yehudah disagrees and says that there is no connection
  2. The Rambam in the Mishneh Torah (beah Ha'mikdash 1:1-5) rules like R' Yehudah (see the Kesef mishna there)
  3. It seems that the connection was only one way. Namely laws about the priest were derived from the Nazirite not the other way around. So if this statement belongs anywhere it should be in a law about the priest no drinking while serving in the temple.
  4. The simple meaning of the statement is not true. While there may be some connection between the Nazirite and the priest there are many ways that they are different. For example a Nazirite can drink other non-grape intoxicants while a priest cannot.

In conclusion this statement relates to obscure Halacha exegesis and doesn't belong here Jon513 12:50, 23 February 2006 (UTC)

A better edit is needed[edit]

"The practice of a Nazarite vow is part of the obscurity of the Greek term "Nazarene" that appears in the New Testament; the sacrifice of a lamb and the offering of bread does suggest a relationship with Christian symbolism." How is the practice part of the obscurity? The sacrifice of a lamb make by Jesus is even obscurer. --Wetman 00:23, 11 April 2006 (UTC)

removed text[edit]

I removed the following text from the article. it appears to have been commented out for some time until someone removed the comments. It needs more sourcing.

"The Rav David Cohen HaNazir was the last prominent figure to have declaired a Nazirite vow under the auspices of Rav Kook, the first chief Rabbi of Israel.
"There are still much lower profile Nazirites in Israel to this day.
"Currently there is a community of Nazirites helping Ethiopian Jews build a community in Lachish, Israel. For Hebrew readers, please see: In English -

--Jon513 11:12, 26 April 2006 (UTC)

May 14 revision[edit]

I have made a major revision to this article, adding a summary of the Jewish Law related to the Nazirite. I plan on adding a section of differing philosophical view of the nazirite in the future (i.e. is the nazirite a good thing or a necessary evil). Jon513 18:15, 14 May 2006 (UTC)

Jew vs Israelite[edit]

Like most people, I too was ignorant of the difference between a carnal Jew and spiritual Israelite, until I became a Nazirite.

Moses Maimonedes, Jewish theologian, historian, and Talmudist, wrote this about scripture:

"Every time that you find in our books a tale the reality of which seems impossible, a story which is repugnant to both reason and common sense, then be sure that the tale contains a profound allegory veiling a deeply mysterious truth; and the greater the absurdity of the letter, the deeper the wisdom of the spirit."

Rabbi Simeon says it much plainer:

"If a man looks upon the Torah as merely a book presenting narratives and everyday matters, alas for him! Such a torah, one treating with everyday concerns, and indeed a more excellent one, we too, even we, could compile. More than that, in the possession of the rulers of the world there are books of even greater merit, and these we could emulate if we wished to compile some such torah. But the Torah, in all of its words, holds supernal truths and sublime secrets.

"So it is with the Torah. Its narrations which relate to the things of the worlds constitute the garments which clothe the body of the Torah; and that body is composed of the Torah's precepts, gufey-torah (bodies, major principles). People without understanding see only the narrations, the garment; those somewhat more penetrating see also the body. But the truly wise, those who serve the most high King and stood on mount Sinai, pierce all the way through to the soul, to the true Torah which is the root principle of all. These same will in the future be vouchsafed to penetrate to the very soul of the soul of the Torah."

"See now how it is like this in the highest world, with garment, body, soul and super-soul. The outer garments are the heavens and all therein, the body is the Community of Israel and it is the recipient of the soul, that is 'the Glory of Israel'; and the soul of the soul is the Ancient Holy One. All of these are conjoined one within the other.

"Woe to the sinners who look upon the Torah as simply tales pertaining to things of the world, seeing thus only the outer garment. But the righteous whose gaze penetrates to the very Torah, happy are they. Just as wine must be in a jar to keep, so the Torah must also be contained in an outer garment. That garment is made up of the tales and stories; but we, we are bound to penetrate beyond."

Bringing this back on-topic. Only a carnal Jew would:

  • not question how Samson could kill so many Philestines and remain consecrated.
  • not question why there was a prohibition on grapes. (Why not any other food?)
  • not question the significance of hair, and how Samson lost his strength when his hair cut.

Thus to say the Nazirite practise was kept by Jews, who didn't even understand that sacrifice was not meant literally (Hosea 6:6, Isa 66:3, Jer 7:22), is to be a Jew reading the Torah literally.

Since the main editor is not even a practising Nazirite, he's about as qualified to comment on the article as an aitheist Jew would be commenting on Kabballah.

Michael.Pohoreski 04:15, 11 June 2006 (UTC)

This is so rediculously ignorent, you have no business editing this subject. I'm not certain which crazy sect you are a part of, but your interpretation is far from true fact. The Jews were there 2000 years ago when Nazerites existed, the Temple existed, and the sacrifices were carried out. You were not. Further the subject of an article is not nessicarily an authority on the subject. —Preceding unsigned comment added by SpaceFalcon2001 (talkcontribs)

In addition, your descriptions of what the "carnal Jew" (a racist title?) assumes are all answered! 1. Samson caused the collapse of the roof killing everyone, including himself, and thusly was not contaminated by dead bodies as he was also killed. He was a Nazir from birth to death. 2. The prohibition on all grape products is very obvious and connected with their lustful connotations! 3. The Nazir is forbidden to cut his hair (unless he comes into contact with a dead body) so that he does not focus on his appearance which is superficial! These, and many more reasons explore the true depth of the Torah, and no modern movement can possibly understand it without a tradition. You are not a nazerite for the simple fact that the conditions to either initiate or end the Nazerine period cannot be fulfilled without the Temple. SF2K1

Hello Michael, it is so nice to see you back on this page. I have read what you wrote several times and I am still not clear what reason you have for changing from Jew to spiritual Israelite. Jon513 18:06, 11 June 2006 (UTC)

I honestly can't understand why you find it so difficult to realise that the Israelites were not just Jews. Jews are from the tribe of Judah. (check when the word Jew was even mentioned for the first time) Question: How many tribes are there? Please read again 1st Kings 11 onwards... ask yourself these questions... Am I aware of the split in the book of Kings? Do I know the difference between Jeroboam with the House of Israel in Samaria and Judah under Rehoboam in Jerusalem? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 21:23, 14 August 2009 (UTC)

Now was Samson a Jew? No he was from Dan. Was he a Nazirite? Yes... so HOW can Nazirite apply only to Jews? It applies to the House of Israel as it says in Numbers when God tells Moses to speak to the House Of Israel. Please stop changing my edit. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 21:27, 14 August 2009 (UTC)


user:SpaceFalcon2001 changed the links on Nazirite from {{bibleverse}} to a dirrect link to a chabad website. I think this is a mistake.

  1. The bibleverse template allows linking to any number of many bible site. It is incorrect to say that it is only for New Testament. In this case the verses link to machon mamre's parallel Hebrew English edition.
  2. Using a template instead of a direct link allows us not be reliant on an external site. In the event that this chabad site go down hundreds of links would have to be changed. However if a site that bibleverse was using goes down, only one link (that of bibleverse) would have to change.
  3. I believe that machon mamre is better than the chabad site. Machon mamre is simpler (no ad, Hebrew and English). While having a rashi commentary is very nice, it is a bit too much, it distracts the reader from the simple meaning of the verse.

If you believe that this site has merit you can speak to user:jnothman who administers bibleverse as see if he can add this site to it. That would allay my second misgiving. Jon513 18:24, 11 June 2006 (UTC)

1. Machon Mamre is not a good example of a Jewish translation. Almost every "Jewish" Translation availible online is the 1917 JPS, including the one machon mamre uses. This is very unfortunate as it is a very poor english translation, and relies a great deal from the KJV as claimed by the JPS themselves. It would be sutible if their 1987 translation could be used, but that is not availible online. The only half decent Jewish translation availible online for free is the Judaica Press translation, which is hosted on the chabad website.

2. A valid issue, but there are many external links.

3. Again, the Hebrew is nice, but the MM english translation is greatly lacking. If the rashi is distracting, we can link to the non-rashi version.SF2K1

Do you intend to change every bibleverse? Jon513 19:57, 11 June 2006 (UTC)
As I encounter/notice them, when they concern Hebrew scriptures and concern Jewish understandings of texts. As is established, bibleverse is not really secure for that purpose, as it is a redirect to any number of sites, when the Judaica press translation is essencially the only decent Jewish translation availible free and online (with an optional rashi for clarification which is incredibly nice) as the only other one is the notoriously poor and outdated 1917 JPS. A number of users, including myself, have been doing the same with the quotes themselves. Further, although MM also provides the hebrew, being that this is the english wiki, it's assumed that most people do not understand the hebrew, and it becomes a pointless graphical display combined with a poor translation. SF2K1
I would strongly recommend that you hold off on these edits. Doing so can greatly distrupt wikipedia. Having a centralized template allows for much greater control over common bible verse issues. I will speak to user:jnothman about adding to bibleverse. Jon513 20:25, 11 June 2006 (UTC)
Please, SF2K1, hold off from any more changes in this manner until the issue is resolved. I have a number of issues:
  • PLEASE use a Wikipedia template rather than direct linking. This uniform linking to verse references may allow easy changes later, for instance: if WikiSource materials get good enough, to link to them.
  • Most importantly, I can't easily produce links to the material because of their use of a CMS which means that the URL of each chapter is not necessarily predictable. If you can produce for me a table corresponding chapters (or series of chapters) to AIDs in the URL, I can put something together for Template:Bibleverse.
  • Yes, the translation isn't the best and the JPS 1980s translation is much better, but not free. Yet it's good enough for Mechon Mamre. The parallel Hebrew-English is quite useful for those who can read the Hebrew, and doesn't reduce the information given.
  • It is not clear under what legal license is using the Judaica Press material. As far as I could tell, it may be plagiarism: the only Copyright on the page is that of
Again, please don't change something of a standardised form. The place you should have come first was Template talk:Bibleverse
jnothman talk 02:09, 12 June 2006 (UTC)
Update: Judaica Press sources now available with Template:bibleverse. I have made available sources JP (Judaica Press) and JPR (Judaicia Press with Rashi). Is that alright then?
I also wanted to note that what you wrote, SpaceFalcon, "Bibleverse is fine for the new testament, but not for the Jewish scriptures", was quite the opposite of one of my intentions in creating Bibleverse. While I decided to make it open to Christian texts, its primary initial purpose was for the Tanakh. jnothman talk 04:43, 12 June 2006 (UTC)
Awesome, I'm glad to hear it has been added! As for the statement, I'm glad to hear that it wasn't entirely true. Sorry to have made such a commotion. SF2K1

Yeah look guys to tell you the truth, the bit about finishing the vow in a temple, not true, the vow is to be completed "at the front of the tent" it's always helpful to read the bible before actually making statements, thankyou. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 09:58, 17 September 2008 (UTC)

Nazirites and the New Testament[edit]

This section lacks sources and appear to have a good dose of orginal research. Parts of it contradict other parts of wikipedia (according to Nazarene, Nazarene has nothing to do with Nazirite - in hebrew they are completely unrelated!). Jon513 18:18, 14 June 2006 (UTC)

You're correct (of course) about Nazirite/Nazarene, but this is a mistake that's shockingly common. TCC (talk) (contribs) 18:26, 14 June 2006 (UTC)
My greater concern is that this is a not a mistake, but written by someone with some unique beliefs. See User talk:Michael.Pohoreski#Nazirite. Jon513 18:32, 14 June 2006 (UTC)
It didn't sound too far off to me. It's generally assumed, on no evidence I know of but his lifestyle, that John the Baptist had taken Nazirite vows. Paul of Tarsus is explicitly said to have shaved his head due to a vow (Acts 18), and this is typically taken to mean as a Nazirite. Similar vows are mentioned in Acts 21, concerning four unnamed men who go into the Temple to "complete...their purification" over seven days with an offering. (Considering that Christian worship requires the consumption of wine, I have no idea how this might work.) The notion that Jesus himself was a Nazirite, on other grounds than the common error related to his home village, I must admit is new to me and may well be OR. TCC (talk) (contribs) 18:50, 14 June 2006 (UTC)
Either way, citations would be nice. TCC (talk) (contribs) 18:55, 14 June 2006 (UTC)

Please explain what is meant by "completely unrelated". Obviously today the words Nazareth/Nazirite and Nazarene get confused. Are the words harder to confuse in Hebrew? Could the words have been confused in New Testament times, like they are today? Perhaps Jesus was a Nazirite, like John the Baptist, but his followers didn't want to say that he learnt his ideas from any teacher other than God, so invented the idea of Jesus of Nazereth. This may explain why the town of Nazereth did not exist at the time of Jesus. (that is not original research) Mike Young 12:03, 26 December 2006 (UTC)

By "completely unrelated" I meant that the words sound nothing alike in Hebrew. To answer your question: Yes, the words are much to confuse in Hebrew. It is very unlikely that they got confused in New Testament times and they are not confused today by anyone who has looked into the issue. Original research does not mean that it does not make any sense. It means that there is not a published reliable sources saying it (WP:RS). If you can find a notable historian or theologian making such a claim, that historian or theologian should be quoted. Jon513 13:31, 28 December 2006 (UTC)
Fellow of the Jesus Seminar Robert M. Price, quoted this on his "The Bible Geek" Radio show, as an explaination for Nazereth being said to be Jesus home town whan it did not exist at the time of the Gospels. Are the words similar in Aramaic or Greek? Mike Young 11:24, 29 December 2006 (UTC)
He also published this in a book called "The incredible shrinking Son of Man" which said this (p 53)

Despite the rendering of many English Bible translations, Jesus is very seldom called "Jesus from Nazareth" in the Gospels. Mark calls him "Jesus the Nazarene," as does Luke twice (Mark 1:24, 10:47, 14:67, 16:6; Luke 4:34, 24:9), while Matthew, John, and Acts always call him "Jesus the Nazorean" (Matt. 26:71; John 18:7, 19:19; Acts 2:22, 3:6, 4:10, 6:14, 22:8, 26:9), with Luke using this epithet once (Luke 18:37, the Bar-Timaeus episode, where he has replaced Mark's "Nazarene" with it). Some critics have questioned whether the village of Nazareth even existed in the time of Jesus, since it receives no mention outside the Gospels until the third century. Whether that is important or not, the difference between "Nazarene" and "Nazorean" does give us reason to suspect that the familiar epithet does not after all denote Jesus' hailing from a village called Nazareth. "The Nazarene" would imply that, but not "the Nazorean." That seems to be a sect name, equivalent to "the Essene" or "the Hasid." Epiphanius, an early Christian cataloguer of "heresies," mentions a pre-Christian sect called "the Nazoreans," their name meaning "the Keepers" of the Torah, or possibly of the secrets (see Mark 4:11, "To you has been given the secret of the kingdom of God, "but to those outside all is by way of parable"). These Nazoreans were the heirs, supposedly, of the neoprimitivist sect of the Rechabites descending from the times of Jeremiah (Jer. 35:1-10). They were rather like Gypsies, itinerant carpenters. "Nazorean" occurs once unambiguously in the New Testament itself as a sect designation, in Acts 24:5: "a ring leader of the sect of the Nazoreans." Robert Eisler, Hugh J. Schonfield, and others have plausibly suggested that Jesus (and early Christians generally) were members of this Jewish pious sect. Many more modern scholars have followed Strauss in an equivalent theory, seeing Jesus as an apprentice and disciple of John the Baptist, in short, a member of his sect until John was arrested, at which time Jesus would have taken on his mantle as Elisha did Elijah's. Mike Young 11:41, 29 December 2006 (UTC)

+:I have edited Nazirite 3.3 'Nazarites in the New Testament', and it now has all citations and sources noted. Can the notice saying that is does not have, and needs, citations now be removed? How is that done? Thanks. Linda Lee 06:28, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

The section needs modern scholars who echo these claims to quoted. As it stands now it is dangerously close to WP:OR. Jon513 09:09, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

I think as it stands now it is fairly well documented, so I have removed the OR tag. If there are objections could editors mark where further references are needed using Template:cn? 05:13, 14 October 2007 (UTC)

The Hebrew word used for Christian is Notzri, Notzrim, Notzroot (the TZ being Sadhe), and the word means Watchman, Guardian, Overseer.

The Hebrew word for Nazarite uses the Hebrew letter zayin and has the meaning of one seperated out from.

Hence all Nazoreans (Notzrim) were Nazarites (Nazarim), but not all Nazarites were Nazoreans.

All Jewish sects like to play on words and had they're own standards of how these word plays would manifest...some used phonetics, others used Gematria, some ussed both. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:30, 18 September 2008 (UTC)

I would love to know what your source is for this theory. Jon513 (talk) 18:49, 18 September 2008 (UTC)

Gentile Nazirite[edit]

I have removed the following (posted by an IP address):

Mainly in the southern US, existting with-in other churches, a sect of modern Nazarites exsist, however their vows are significantly diffrent. Insted of growing the hair, it is cut to a shave at the beginning of each month. (As a sign that purifty can not be achieved humanly.) Modern Nazarites are expressed largely in personal prayer, which takes place at the end of each month, a time of hardship for theirself or a close friend, or after a death. Nazarites also fast in daylight from Christmas until the dawn of the New Year, this is a symbolism of Jesus gift of purity to human kind. A time of private prayer is also spent the night of the turn of the new year, as at the end of each month they last several hours and end with the shaving of the head at dawn. Modern Nazarites rarely meet in groups and also rarely meet more nazarites than those who bring them into the traditions. (This is because it imposses a doctrine of a Personal Faith, one of the few actual thought doctrines of the Nazarite.)

As it lacks content and sources. Jon513 17:43, 3 February 2007 (UTC)

"even those of family members"[edit]

Brak (talk · contribs) removed (perhaps unknowingly) the phrase "even those of family members" from "Avoid corpses and graves". My intention in the statement was the make the reader aware that the commandment of a Nazir to avoid corpses is stricter than that of a priest which can be defiled for close family (Leviticus 21). Jon513 12:40, 6 June 2007 (UTC)


hi Levush (talk · contribs), (I assume you are also wikipedia is an encyclopedia not a Torah blog. I understand that it is important that people do not accidentally make a vow to be a nazir, but the tone you are using is not appropriate for an encyclopedia. you would not expect Britannica to have

"There is NO temple in jerusalem (may it be the will of haShem that the temple is rebuild in our time).
So one can NEVER get rid of nazirism."

and neither should wikipedia. Jon513 22:09, 9 August 2007 (UTC)

Hi John,
how would you stop some young ones from playing around with serious torah things. If you read about beeing nazir, one can think wow, lets try this at school for some months just to be cool, and to show some torah knowledge to the classmates.
We had a shiur in shul about nazirism some weeks ago, as this was part of our parasha, here we discussed the topic and found no way out as long there is no temple. So one should not play with this, as this is much more sewere than changing ones nussach or some minhagim.—The preceding unsigned comment was added by Levush (talkcontribs).
I understand your concern. Because of your edits I added this to the article. It is not wikipedia's job to stop idiots from being idiots, but to inform them of the facts in a objective manner. Saying "modern rabbis disapprove of the practice" is fine, "Warning you shouldn't make a nazir vow because my rabbi says so" is not. I am sure you can see the great difference in tone of those two statements. Jon513 22:30, 9 August 2007 (UTC)

Seems a little strange to me..[edit]

So let me get this straight: A person can become "holy unto the Lord" if he/she follows the Nazi rite? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 11:45, 12 October 2007 (UTC)

This is a place to talk about the article - not the subject of the article. If something is unclear and you think it has to be explained, please say how. If you just want to talk was nazirite - or biblical criticism in general - I would recommend that you find a forum that deals with such topics. Jon513 22:26, 13 October 2007 (UTC)

dispute on "Nazirites in the New Testament"[edit] (talk · contribs) placed the following message at the beginning of the section "Nazirites in the New Testament"

This is pseudo-scholarship Bunk based on incomplete information - The word Nazorean of the Jesus movement had nothing to do with the Nazarite (although Nazarites played a part)- from comparison with the Mandaeans (followers of John the Baptist), we can see that the term/label/name Nazorean had to do with a title the perfected leaders of this Jesus Messianic movement had, which in Hebrew was Ha-NoTSRi (which the designation used for Jesus in the Talmud, Yeshua Ha-Notsri NOT Ha-Nazari) and is the same word misused by Hebrew speakers today for Christian, NoTSRim (which means Watchman, or Guardians (of the Law/Torah). After the Jewish wars and the extermination of the Jewish populous from Palestine, Saul's and his faith first antinomian supersessionist Christians began to assert themselves as the orthodoxy, and the Notsrim ie Nazoreans/Nazarenes were labeled as heretics. The true word Notsrim, let alone the true meanings would have been lost if not for the Church fathers who faithfully recorded everything in an impotent attempts to denigrate the truth.

I replaced the message with a {{disputed-section}} and copied the arguments here to facilitate further discussion. Jon513 (talk) 21:59, 24 February 2008 (UTC)


how can you edit it from the page when this last reply did not make one quote or reference? its all opinion until he shows a reference. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 02:16, 16 October 2009 (UTC)

blood sacrifice bias (against Nazareans)[edit]

In the summary it says animals must be sacrificed, but this is biased, and later the article only says there might have to be sacrifices. It is biased because it excludes Nazir-Essene/Nasoraean/Nazarene/Nazoraean, who are against killing animals. Some entire Judaist-Nazarean sects were Nazars, and while the words have different original meanings, they have mostly the same definitions. There is record Nazareans, or at least similar Nazars, have been around since Exodus, and I think this article is biased towards later sects.--Dchmelik (talk) 03:43, 11 March 2008 (UTC)

I don't understand what you are saying. What exactly are you saying that these early sects practiced? Also note that requirement of sacrifices are explicitly in the bible and was not invented by "later-sects". Jon513 (talk) 08:40, 11 March 2008 (UTC)
Nazoraioi/Notzrim/Netzarim (Nazarean) practice involves no killing of animals--not even to eat, and Nazareans are generally Nazirs (they sacrifice plants or plant products.) Actually they never cut their hair (like Samson) and presumably consume[d] grapes or their juice (with little or no alcohol.) The books forbidding grapes but allowing alcohol seem more recent. Maybe Nazareans and Nazirs are still different, or I confused ancient Nazarean-like Nazirs with Nazareans... I still think they overlap much but will have to talk to some teachers and read more. There is no consensus about what books are Tanakh or Bible, etc. (much has been changed and deliberately destroyed, and lost)--Nazareans exclude books condoning killing of sentient beings. Christians exclude some Tanakh canon.--Dchmelik (talk) 10:33, 11 March 2008 (UTC)
The references to sacrifices is Numbers 6:1-21, the only place in the Bible where the laws of the Nazirite are full elucidated. Also Number 6:4 states "All the days of his Naziriteship shall he eat nothing that is made of the grape-vine, from the pressed grapes even to the grapestone." which forbid grapes - even non-alcoholic ones. In any even the permissibility of non-grape-based alcohol and the forbiddingness of grapes is explicitly in the Mishnah (70-200 CE), a very early source. I have found no authoritative source that forbids all alcohol (early or late) and would be interested if you have some.
I would not be surprised if these sects based some of their practices on the Bible. But that does not mean that they were "nazirites". Just as Kwanzaa may be "based" on Hanukkah it does mean that Kwanzaa is a form of Hanukkah, though this may we worth mentioning in the Kwanzaa article. In the same way these sects may base some of their practices on Numbers 6, but are not worthy of mention in this article.
It seems that neither you nor I have any real information about this. Any information would have to wait until sources can be found. Jon513 (talk) 12:12, 11 March 2008 (UTC)
The sources are the Mandaean (non-alcohol-using vegetarians who call themselves Nasurai) book of John the Baptist, which states they had a Nazarean (Beni-Amen) group at Mt. Carmel, and the biographies of Pythagoras (esp. by Iamblichus and Diogenes Laertius) which state he visited Mt. Carmel and was a long-haired vegan. Mt. Carmel was inhabited for millenia, and these sources are sufficient evidence to show some or many ancient Nazarites were vegetarian. These Nazareans disagreed with Numbers 6, and to have the article only based on that is a Pharisee (later sect) bias. Language had less dictionaries and more variance in those days, and it is not far-fetched to say that these Nazars--Nazareans & Nazarites were originally the same due to their practices as well as similarity in name.--Dchmelik (talk) 03:11, 8 April 2008 (UTC)
Unless someone wants to remove the Rastafari section, the section I suggested should be added, since Nazareans are/were Jewish and Christian (which can be easily noticed in ancient historians' texts, deduced from Mandaean/Nasurai texts, and several modern historians say ;) Rastafari are Christian. As well as Nazareans and Rastafari not drinking alcohol, many/most the latter are also vegetarian (or pescatarian like some Essenes/Nazareans.) If you study Biblical history, you might read that the texts of any known Bible but the Essene one dates to (far) AD. The Mandaeans/Nasurai are Judaists--in fact Jews as known from pre-Christian times to today: their language is a type of Aramaic. Their main prophet was John the Baptist who was a Southern Essene (Ossaean) of Qumran related to the Northern Essenes (Nazareans) of Mt. Carmel who reject Numbers 6. TMany Ossaeans had accepted that section, but John the Baptist said a certain Nazarean was the Messiah. Arguably John and maybe some of his followers then would not have accepted Numbers 6. His present-day followers, the Mandaean Nasurai may not accept Numbers 6 and do not eat some meat: either the article is wrong that they do not eat any, or they have changed. Their book I mentioned refers to Nasurai/Nazareans living at Mt. Carmel. Elijah (who Yeshua was said to be reincarnate) lived there and taught Elisha (who John was said to be reincarnate.) There are enough connections and material that this should be added to the article, though many people do not care about the topic, they might if they read and thought about it. Since the Rastafari section is here I will add a Nazarean section unless many people object--some people are Nazareans today. To sum up the evidence on historical ones is from Pythagoras biographies, Josephus, Philo, Mandaean Nasurai, as well as perhaps Orthodox monastics/Carmelites, and it is written about by a Nazarean Doctor of Divinity (and AFAIK 20th century Essene scholars he studies) on a website of a group that I know people from in real life, though I do not know if websites can be referenced.--Dchmelik (talk) 09:39, 22 August 2008 (UTC)


Although the nazirite vow is part of the Jewish tradition, and is basically a Jewish phenomenon, it has been influential on other modern religions, particularly Rastafari. Therefore, it is appropriate that this should be mentioned in the article.

I've restored the section on the Rastafari movement, which was mysteriously and anonymously removed without comment last October:

However, I've also edited the text, hopefully making it quite clear and uncontroversial that the Rastafari and Jewish traditions are distinct, with different interpretations, and that the nazirite vow of Samson is described basically as an inspiration for modern Rastafari.

By the way, I've noticed some inconsistency within this article regarding capitalization. In some parts of the History section, "Nazirite" is capitalized, though in most of the article it is not. What is correct here? zadignose (talk) 00:15, 23 June 2008 (UTC)

The problem with the section is that it completely lacks any source. The source cited no longer exist online, but even when it did (I found it) it was a very poor source. Jon513 (talk) 09:01, 23 June 2008 (UTC)

Leviticus 21:5 "They shall not make baldness upon their head, neither shall they shave off the corner of their beard nor make any cuttings in their flesh." in the Bible refers to Kohanim/Priests (scroll back to Leviticus 21:1) (and coincidentally, ALL Jews have the same restrictions Leviticus 19:27-28). These verses should in no way be relevant to Nazirite. KLdd15 (talk) 15:17, 6 February 2017 (UTC)


In regards to capitalization, the 1906 Jewish Encyclopedia, 1913 Catholic Encyclopedia and the 1911 Encyclopædia Britannica all capitalize "Nazirite" but I do not know why. Perhaps they view a Nazirite as an important religious figure which is capitalized see Wikipedia:Manual of Style (capital letters)#Religions, deities, philosophies, doctrines and their adherents. Nevertheless I think it should not be capitalized. Jon513 (talk) 09:01, 23 June 2008 (UTC)

Basic grammar. Of course Nazarite should be capitalized, because it is a proper noun. (talk) 19:18, 2 June 2011 (UTC)

City name of Nazareth[edit]

I wonder if the name of Nazareth has anythign to do with Nazirites. If so, calling Jesus a "Nazarene" would boil down to the same basic etymology, although it would still not be known whether he was a Nazirite or came from Nazareth. (And since he went around handling wine anyway ("This is my blood..."), according to the Christian Bible, he apparently wasn't all that orthodox a Nazirite if he was, indeed, a Nazirite. (talk) 03:59, 5 February 2009 (UTC)

A Response to UTC: NAZARETH (HEBREW natsoret -- root nun-tsade-resh) is not related to Nazirite (Hebrew nazir, root nun-zayon-resh). They are entirely different roots. Thus the article appears misguided in making this connection that works in English but is impossible in Hebrew. Matthew makes a word-play "He shall be called a Nazarene" (end of Matthew 2) based on Isaiah 11:1-2. The messianic decendant of Jesse is called a "branch" (Hebrew netser). Matthew sees this as fulled in Jesus in the following way: How appropriate that the one whose title it Branch (natser) comes from Nazareth (Hebrew natsoreth, meaning "a sprouting"). Nazarene simply means from Nazareth. It has nothing to do with Nazirites. JMS 26 May 2009. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:39, 26 May 2009 (UTC)

Is it possible that the Author or Transcriber of the Gospel spoke a non-Semitic language. To us the words are impossible to mix up, but they might be the same in Greek or Latin. (talk) 07:32, 10 November 2009 (UTC)
They aren't. Nuttyskin (talk) 03:37, 18 June 2018 (UTC)

Original Research[edit]

A paragraph-long alternative exegesis regarding a kind of "nazareth-nazarite confusion" is given in this article without any source. I'm removing it as Original Synthesis/Research until sources are provided. Here is the text:

Appeal has been made to "nazirite" rather than "of Nazareth" or "the Nazarene" for the origin of these Hebrew/Aramaic epithets for Jesus. This conclusion is based in part on the prophecy in Matthew 2:23 that says of Jesus, "And he came and dwelt in a city called Nazareth: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophets, He shall be called a Nazarene." It is doubtful that the prophets had actually said 'Nazarene', rather than 'Nazirite', because reference bibles state that the prophecy cited in Matt. 2:23 is in reference to Judges 13:5-7 concerning Samson's description as "a Nazirite to God from the womb to the day of his death". In addition, there is no word translated ‘Nazarene’ or any reference to a city of 'Nazareth' in the Hebrew Scriptures (Old Testament). Furthermore, although Luke 1:13-15 describes John the Baptist as a Nazirite from birth, John implied that Jesus was holier than he in Matthew 3:13-15, which says, "Then cometh Jesus from Galilee to Jordan unto John, to be baptized of him. But John forbad him, saying, I have need to be baptized of thee, and comest thou to me? And Jesus answering said unto him, Suffer it to be so now: for thus it becometh us to fulfil all righteousness. Then he suffered him". Thus Jesus was baptized, immersion in water being a fulfillment of the nazirite vow.

NJMauthor (talk) 20:30, 3 July 2010 (UTC)

Why become a Nazirite?[edit]

Why did anyone become a nazirite? Increased charisma or magical powers? Rursus dixit. (mbork3!) 09:48, 25 March 2011 (UTC)

Yes, I was wondering about that. Is this addressed at all in the article? If not it should be addressed. -- Brangifer (talk) 03:46, 12 March 2012 (UTC)

is "hermit" relevent?[edit]

i noticed that this whole articles bares some similarties with the article "hermit". since i don't think im knoledgeble enough to make any changes i'll only make a segestion: make some link or mention of "hermit" on this page. even if there isn't any connection, or atleast enough diffrences, just mentioning that "hermit" is somthing else would be very nice.

i hope someone will find this relevent.
anyway,thank you for reading and may you have a good day. — Preceding unsigned comment added by EsB (talkcontribs) 20:57, 24 December 2011 (UTC)


An editor keeps restoring information that is irrelevant to this article, is unsourced editorializing, and only has one reference, a YouTube video. Please stop adding this or risk being blocked. Please explain why this should be in the article. -- Brangifer (talk) 04:26, 12 May 2012 (UTC)

Please explain why this is irrelevant about this topic. Thanks — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 04:34, 12 May 2012 (UTC)
What part of what I wrote above and in my edit summaries don't you understand? What do Sikh's have to do with Hebrew Nazirite's? What reliable sources do you have that show such an association? If you can establish such an association using reliable sources, then you might be able to make a case for inclusion in this article and I'll gladly help you. -- Brangifer (talk) 06:53, 12 May 2012 (UTC)

Title change: Nazirite --> Nazarite[edit]

The title should be changed for several reasons:

1. The English word is normally and most commonly spelled "Nazarite". Just do a Google search. (I suspect that many of the existing spellings as "Nazirite" are because of this article, yet it is still a minority spelling.)

a. Google search for only Nazarite: 246,000 results
b. Google search for only Nazirite: 159,000 results

2. The Jewish Encyclopedia supports this spelling.

3. The Catholic Encyclopedia supports this spelling.

4. English Bible translations use this spelling, and since this is the English Wikipedia (not Hebrew), we follow the most common English spelling.

Please discuss for and against this proposal. What say ye? -- Brangifer (talk) 05:39, 13 May 2012 (UTC)

Attitudes toward Nazirites[edit]

Anybody notice that the story cited in the section "Attitudes toward Nazirites":

Simeon the Just (a High Priest) was opposed to the nazirite vow and ate of the sacrifice offered by a nazirite on only a single occasion. Once a youth with flowing hair came to him and wished to have his head shorn. When asked his motive, the youth replied that he had seen his own face reflected in a spring and it had pleased him so that he feared lest his beauty might become an idol to him. He therefore wished to offer up his hair to God, and Simeon then partook of the sin-offering which he brought.[1]

Is vaguely reminiscent of the story of Narcissus? Nzk10 (talk) 03:48, 20 September 2012 (UTC)


  1. ^ Nazir 4b, Nedarim 9b, Yerushalmi Nedarim 35d; Tosefta Nazir 4; Yerushalmi Nazir 1:7

How many types of Nazarite?[edit]

The article says "There are three types of nazarite" but in the very next sentence, it says "there are only two, and not three, types of nazirite". The article seems to disagree with itself? Grand Dizzy (talk) 17:52, 5 July 2019 (UTC)

Explicit name of god[edit]

I have removed an explicit name use, as this was based on a primary source and the vast majority of secondary sources (or bible translations for that matter - including the link used which has "the LORD" - Numbers 6:8) do not use the explicit name. If you contest this - please demonstrate using secondary sources discussing this topic that this term is used.Icewhiz (talk) 07:34, 24 August 2019 (UTC)