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Laying on of Hands
Imposition of Hands
Dictionaries
The Anchor Yale Bible Dictionary
Hands, Laying on of
HANDS, LAYING ON OF. The laying on of hands is a ritual gesture attested in both the OT and the NT.
Baker Encyclopedia of the Bible
Laying on of Hands
Laying on of Hands. Phrase used in the Bible to describe a gesture or a ceremonial act. Central to both uses is the notion of power. The hand, particularly the right hand, was often a symbol for power in Bible times (see Ex 15:6; Ps 17:7; 20:6; 44:3).Laying on of hands was commonly used as an idiom
The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia, Revised
Hands, Laying on of
Hands, Laying on of[Heb sāmaḵ yaḏ ʿal—‘lean a hand upon’ (Ex. 29:10, 15, 19; Lev. 1:4), šîṯ yaḏ ʿal—‘place a hand upon’ (Gen. 46:4), etc.; Gk. títhēmi tás cheíras epʾ (Mk. 10:16), epitíthēmi tás cheíras (Mt. 19:15), epíthesis tṓn cheiṛṓn (1 Tim. 4:14), etc.]. The practice of laying
The HarperCollins Bible Dictionary (Revised and Updated)
Laying on of Hands
laying on of hands, concretely, the activity of exerting force or doing physical violence (e.g., Gen. 22:12; Exod. 7:9; Luke 20:19; 21:12; Acts 21:17). Because of this concrete usage, however, the placing of one’s hands on someone or something also became a symbol for the transfer of force. Thus, by
The Wycliffe Bible Encyclopedia
Hands, Laying On of
HANDS, LAYING ON OF. This is a religious act which signifies the impartation of a special blessing. See Hand. It was used to set aside the Levites for their special office (Num 8:5–20) and to dedicate animals (Lev 1:4). Thus Isaac blessed the sons of Joseph (Gen 48:14–19) and Jesus the little children
The New Bible Dictionary, Third Edition
Laying On of Hands
LAYING ON OF HANDS. Actions with the *hands were an important part of ancient religious ritual, e.g. in prayer (1 Ki. 8:54; 1 Tim. 2:8) and invocation of divine blessing (Lv. 9:22; Ecclus. 50:20; Lk. 24:50). Jacob blessed the sons of Joseph by laying (šîṯ) his hands upon their heads (Gn. 48:8–20),
Eerdmans Dictionary of the Bible
Laying on of Hands
Laying on of HandsA ceremonial act of consecration or identification (Heb. sāmaḵ yaḏ ʿal; Gk. epitɩ́thēmi tás cheɩ́ras, epɩ́thesis t̂n cheir̂n). In the OT this ritual employed either one or two hands. The two-handed ritual occurred when the priest placed his hands on the scapegoat’s head (Lev.
Eerdmans Bible Dictionary
Laying on of Hands
Laying on of Hands (Heb. sāmaḵ yaḏ˓al; Gk. [epi]títhēmi tás cheíras [ep˒]).† A ceremonial act of consecration or identification.
The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church
hands, imposition of
hands, imposition of. A ritual gesture which figures prominently in the Bible and in the life of the Church, and was also known in the classical world. Acc. to Num. 8, the Israelites were to lay their hands on the heads of the *Levites, and the Levites were to lay their hands on the heads of the bulls
Smith’s Bible Dictionary
Laying on of hands
Laying on of hands. This “formed at an early period a part of the ceremony observed on the appointment and consecration of persons to high and holy undertakings”; (and in the Christian Church was especially used in setting apart men to the ministry and to other holy offices. It is a symbolical act expressing
The New Unger’s Bible Dictionary
Hands, Laying On of
HANDS, LAYING ON OF. This occurs in Scripture as a patriarchal usage, as with Jacob’s laying his hands upon the heads of Joseph’s children (Gen. 48:14). It also occurs in later times, as when Jesus placed His hands upon children presented to Him for His blessing (Matt. 19:15). The laying on of hands
Key passages
Nu 8:12

And the Levites will lay their hands on the head of the one bull and offer it as a sin offering and the other one as a burnt offering to Yahweh, to make atonement for the Levites.

Mt 19:13–15

Then children were brought to him so that he could lay his hands on them and pray, but the disciples rebuked them. But Jesus said, “Allow the children, and do not forbid them to come to me, for to such belongs the kingdom of heaven.” And he laid his hands …

Ac 9:17

So Ananias departed and entered into the house, and placing his hands on him, he said, “Brother Saul, the Lord Jesus, who appeared to you on the road by which you came, has sent me so that you may regain your sight and be filled with the Holy Spirit.”

Ac 13:3

Then, after they had fasted and prayed and placed their hands on them, they sent them away.

1 Ti 4:14

Do not neglect the gift that is in you, that was granted to you through prophecy with the laying on of hands by the council of elders.