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There is no Biblical example of this practice. It is something that is frequently mentioned by pastors when preaching. Perhaps it was a Jewish tradition, but it is certainly not mentioned in the Scriptures. If it was a tradition....it was a tradition prompted by fear, not the Word of God. Thus it was never God's intention that people should be motivated by fear.. But rather by love..... There is a HOLY fear of God, a RIGHT fear of God....but there is also wrong fear. A parallel can be seen when people refuse to participate in communion....they fear that God will punish them somehow. Yes, the Scriptures do talk of this. But they say "let a man examine himself and so let him eat......" (1Cor.11v28); they verse does NOT say "let a man examine himself and so let him NOT eat". Yet, fear, a wrong fear, causes us to interpret the verse negatively rather than positively. AS long as we examine ourselves we are free to eat, without fear.
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