|Noah Webster's Dictionary|
1. (v. i.) To march off in a line, file by file; to file off.
2. (v. t.) Same as Defilade.
3. (n.) Any narrow passage or gorge in which troops can march only in a file, or with a narrow front; a long, narrow pass between hills, rocks, etc.
4. (n.) The act of defilading a fortress, or of raising the exterior works in order to protect the interior. See Defilade.
5. (v. t.) To make foul or impure; to make filthy; to dirty; to befoul; to pollute.
6. (v. t.) To soil or sully; to tarnish, as reputation; to taint.
7. (v. t.) To injure in purity of character; to corrupt.
8. (v. t.) To corrupt the chastity of; to debauch; to violate.
9. (v. t.) To make ceremonially unclean; to pollute.
Int. Standard Bible Encyclopedia
de-fil', de-fil'-ment (Anglo-Saxon, afylau, etc.; Middle English, defoulen, "make foul," "pollute," render (the King James Version) 9 Hebrew roots (the Revised Version (British and American) six): ga`al, "defile"; chalal, "defile" (from "untie, loosen, open," i.e. "make common," hence, "profane"); chaneph, "incline away" (from right or religion), hence, "profane," "defile" (Jeremiah 3:9, the American Standard Revised Version "pollute"); Tame', the principal root, over 250 times translated "defile" 74 times "to become, or render, unclean"; Tanaph, "to soil" (Songs 5:3); `alal, "deal severely, or decidedly, with," "roll" (Job 16:15, the King James Version, the American Revised Version, margin); `anah, "humble" (Genesis 34:2 the King James Version, the American Standard Revised Version "humble"); qadhash, "separate," "sanctify," "devote to religious use," hence, "forfeit" (Deuteronomy 22:9 the King James Version, the American Standard Revised Version "forfeit," margin "consecrated"). They also render 6 (the King James Version) Greek roots (American Revised Version, 4): koinos, etc., "common" or "unclean," because appertaining to the outside world and not to the people of God, opposite of katharos, "clean," used 13 times; miaino, miasma, miasmos, "stain," "tinge," "dye": "In their dreamings defile the flesh," Jude 1:8; moluno, "stain," "contaminate": "not defile their garments" (Revelation 3:4); spiloo, "spot," "stain": "defile the whole body" (James 3:6); phtheiro, "corrupt," "destroy": the temple of God (1 Corinthians 3:17 the King James Version, the American Standard Revised Version "destroyeth"); arsenokoites: "defile themselves with men" (1 Timothy 1:10 the King James Version, the American Standard Revised Version "abusers of")):
1. Defilement in the Old Testament:
Defilement in the Old Testament was physical, sexual, ethical, ceremonial, religious, the last four, especially, overlapping.
(1) Physical: "I have washed my feet; how shall I defile them?" (Songs 5:3).
(2) Sexual: which might be ceremonial or moral; of individuals by illicit intercourse (Leviticus 18:20), or by intercourse at forbidden times (Leviticus 15:24 1 Samuel 21:5); of the land by adultery: "Shall not that land be greatly defiled?" (Jeremiah 3:1 the American Standard Revised Version "polluted," usually substituted where the moral or religious predominates over the ceremonial).
(3) Ethical: "Your hands are defiled with blood" (Isaiah 59:3); "Neither shall they defile themselves any more with. any of their transgressions" (Ezekiel 37:23).
(4) Ceremonial: to render ceremonially unclean, i.e. disqualified for religious service or worship, and capable of communicating the disqualification.
(a) Persons were defiled by contact with carcasses of unclean animals (Leviticus 11:24); or with any carcass (Leviticus 17:15); by eating a carcass (Leviticus 22:8); by contact with issues from the body, one's own or another's, e.g. abnormal issues from the genitals, male or female (Leviticus 15:2, 25); menstruation (Leviticus 15:19); by contact with anyone thus unclean (Leviticus 15:24); copulation (Leviticus 15:16-18); uncleanness after childbirth (Leviticus 12:2-5); by contact with unclean persons (Leviticus 5:3), or unclean things (Leviticus 22:6), or with leprosy (especially defiling; Leviticus 13:14), or with the dead (Numbers 6:12), or with one unclean by such contact (Numbers 19:22), or by funeral rites (Leviticus 21:1); by contact with creeping things (Leviticus 22:5), or with unclean animals (Leviticus 11:26).
(b) Holy objects were ceremonially defiled by the contact, entrance or approach of the defiled (Leviticus 15:31 Numbers 19:13); by the presence of dead bodies, or any remains of the dead (Ezekiel 9:7 2 Kings 23:16: Josiah's defilement of heathen altars by the ashes of the priests); by the entrance of foreigners (Psalm 79:1; see Acts 21:28); by forbidden treatment, as the altar by being tooled (Exodus 20:25); objects in general by contact with the unclean. Ceremonial defilement, strictly considered, implied, not sin, but ritual unfitness.
(5) Religious: not always easily distinguished or entirely distinguishable from the ceremonial, still less from the ethical, but in which the central attitude and relationship to Yahweh as covenant God and God of righteousness, was more fully in question. The land might be defiled by bloodshed (Numbers 35:33), especially of the just or innocent; by adultery (Jeremiah 3:1); by idolatry and idolatrous practices, like sacrificing children to idols, etc. (Leviticus 20:3 Psalm 106:39); the temple or altar by disrespect (Malachi 1:7, 12); by offering the unclean (Haggai 2:14); by any sort of unrighteousness (Ezekiel 36:17); by the presence of idols or idolatrous paraphernalia (Jeremiah 7:30).
2. Defilement in New Testament:
The scope of defilement in its various degrees (direct, or primary, as from the person or thing defiled; indirect, or secondary, tertiary, or even further, by contact with the defiled) had been greatly widened by rabbinism into a complex and immensely burdensome system whose shadow falls over the whole New Testament life. Specific mentions are comparatively few. Physical defilement is not mentioned. Sexual defilement appears, in a figurative sense: "These are they that were not defiled with women" (Revelation 14:4). Ceremonial defilement is found in, but not approved by, the New Testament. Examples are: by eating with unwashed, "common," not ceremonially cleansed, hands (Mark 7:2); by eating unclean, "common," food (Acts 10:14; Peter's vision); by intimate association with Gentiles, such as eating with them (not expressly forbidden in Mosaic law; Acts 11:3), or entering into their houses (John 18:28; the Pharisees refusing to enter the Pretorium); by the presence of Gentiles in the Temple (Acts 21:28).
But with Christ's decisive and revolutionary dictum (Mark 7:19): "This he said, making all meats clean," etc., and with the command in Peter's vision: "What God hath cleansed, make not thou common" (Acts 10:15), and with Paul's bold and consistent teaching: "All things indeed are clean" (Romans 14:20, etc.), the idea of ceremonial or ritual defilement, having accomplished its educative purpose, passed. Defilement in the New Testament teaching, therefore, is uniformly ethical or spiritual, the two constantly merging. The ethical is found more predominantly in: "The things which proceed out of the mouth come forth out of the heart; and they defile the man" (Matthew 15:18); "that did not defile their garments" (Revelation 3:4); "defileth the whole body" (James 3:6). The spiritual seems to predominate in: "defiled and unbelieving" (Titus 1:15); "conscience being weak is defiled" (by concession to idolatry.) (1 Corinthians 8:7); "lest any root of bitterness springing up trouble you, and thereby the many be defiled" (Hebrews 12:15). For the supposed origins of the idea and details of defilement, as from hygienic or aesthetic causes, "natural aversions," "taboo," "totemism," associations with ideas of death, or evil life, religious symbolism, etc., see POLLUTION; PURIFICATION; UNCLEANNESS. Whatever use God may have made of ideas and feelings common among many nations in some form, the Divine purpose was clearly to impress deeply and indelibly on the Israelites the ideas of holiness and sacredness in general, and of Yahweh's holiness, and their own required holiness and separateness in particular, thus preparing for the deep New Testament teachings of sin, and of spiritual consecration and sanctification.
Philip Wendell Crannell
Defile (63 Occurrences)
Matthew 15:11 That which enters into the mouth doesn't defile the man; but that which proceeds out of the mouth, this defiles the man." (WEB KJV WEY ASV DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV)
Matthew 15:18 But the things which proceed out of the mouth come out of the heart, and they defile the man. (WEB KJV WEY ASV DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV)
Matthew 15:20 These are the things which defile the man; but to eat with unwashed hands doesn't defile the man." (WEB KJV WEY ASV DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV)
Mark 7:15 There is nothing from outside of the man, that going into him can defile him; but the things which proceed out of the man are those that defile the man. (WEB KJV ASV DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV)
Mark 7:18 He said to them, "Are you thus without understanding also? Don't you perceive that whatever goes into the man from outside can't defile him, (WEB KJV ASV DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV)
Mark 7:20 He said, "That which proceeds out of the man, that defiles the man. (Root in WEB KJV ASV DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV)
Mark 7:23 All these evil things come from within, and defile the man." (WEB KJV ASV DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV)
1 Corinthians 3:17 If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are. (KJV WBS)
1 Timothy 1:10 For whoremongers, for them that defile themselves with mankind, for menstealers, for liars, for perjured persons, and if there be any other thing that is contrary to sound doctrine; (KJV WBS)
Hebrews 12:15 looking carefully lest there be any man who falls short of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up trouble you, and many be defiled by it; (Root in WEB KJV WEY ASV DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)
Jude 1:8 Yet in like manner these also in their dreaming defile the flesh, despise authority, and slander celestial beings. (WEB KJV ASV DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV)
Revelation 3:4 Nevertheless you have a few names in Sardis that did not defile their garments. They will walk with me in white, for they are worthy. (WEB KJV ASV DBY WBS YLT)
Exodus 20:25 If you make me an altar of stone, you shall not build it of cut stones; for if you lift up your tool on it, you have polluted it. (See NIV)
Leviticus 11:43 You shall not make yourselves abominable with any creeping thing that creeps, neither shall you make yourselves unclean with them, that you should be defiled thereby. (Root in WEB KJV JPS ASV DBY WBS RSV NIV)
Leviticus 11:44 For I am Yahweh your God. Sanctify yourselves therefore, and be holy; for I am holy: neither shall you defile yourselves with any kind of creeping thing that moves on the earth. (WEB KJV JPS ASV WBS YLT RSV)
Leviticus 15:31 "'Thus you shall separate the children of Israel from their uncleanness, so they will not die in their uncleanness, when they defile my tabernacle that is in their midst.'" (WEB KJV JPS ASV DBY WBS)
Leviticus 18:20 "'You shall not lie carnally with your neighbor's wife, and defile yourself with her. (WEB KJV JPS ASV WBS NAS RSV NIV)
Leviticus 18:23 "'You shall not lie with any animal to defile yourself with it; neither shall any woman give herself to an animal, to lie down with it: it is a perversion. (WEB KJV JPS ASV WBS NAS RSV NIV)
Leviticus 18:24 "'Don't defile yourselves in any of these things: for in all these the nations which I am casting out before you were defiled. (WEB KJV JPS ASV WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)
Leviticus 18:28 that the land not vomit you out also, when you defile it, as it vomited out the nation that was before you. (WEB KJV JPS ASV WBS NAS RSV NIV)
Leviticus 18:30 Therefore you shall keep my requirements, that you do not practice any of these abominable customs, which were practiced before you, and that you do not defile yourselves with them: I am Yahweh your God.'" (WEB KJV JPS ASV WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)
Leviticus 20:3 I also will set my face against that person, and will cut him off from among his people because he has given of his seed to Molech, to defile my sanctuary, and to profane my holy name. (WEB KJV JPS ASV WBS YLT NAS NIV)
Leviticus 20:25 "'You shall therefore make a distinction between the clean animal and the unclean, and between the unclean fowl and the clean: and you shall not make yourselves abominable by animal, or by bird, or by anything with which the ground teems, which I have separated from you as unclean for you. (See NIV)
Leviticus 21:1 Yahweh said to Moses, "Speak to the priests, the sons of Aaron, and say to them,'A priest shall not defile himself for the dead among his people; (WEB KJV JPS ASV WBS YLT NAS RSV)
Leviticus 21:3 and for his virgin sister who is near to him, who has had no husband; for her he may defile himself. (WEB KJV JPS ASV WBS YLT NAS RSV)
Leviticus 21:4 He shall not defile himself, being a chief man among his people, to profane himself. (WEB KJV JPS ASV WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)
Leviticus 21:11 neither shall he go in to any dead body, nor defile himself for his father, or for his mother; (WEB KJV JPS ASV WBS YLT NAS RSV)
Leviticus 22:8 That which dieth of itself, or is torn with beasts, he shall not eat to defile himself therewith; I am the LORD. (KJV JPS ASV WBS)
Numbers 5:3 Both you shall put male and female outside of the camp; that they not defile their camp, in the midst of which I dwell." (WEB KJV JPS ASV DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)
Numbers 6:9 "'If any man dies very suddenly beside him, and he defiles the head of his separation; then he shall shave his head in the day of his cleansing. On the seventh day he shall shave it. (Root in WEB KJV JPS ASV DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV)
Numbers 18:32 You shall bear no sin by reason of it, when you have heaved from it its best: and you shall not profane the holy things of the children of Israel, that you not die.'" (See NIV)
Numbers 35:34 You shall not defile the land which you inhabit, in the midst of which I dwell: for I, Yahweh, dwell in the midst of the children of Israel.'" (WEB KJV JPS ASV DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)
Deuteronomy 21:23 his body shall not remain all night on the tree, but you shall surely bury him the same day; for he who is hanged is accursed of God; that you don't defile your land which Yahweh your God gives you for an inheritance. (WEB KJV JPS ASV DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV)
2 Kings 23:13 The high places that were before Jerusalem, which were on the right hand of the mountain of corruption, which Solomon the king of Israel had built for Ashtoreth the abomination of the Sidonians, and for Chemosh the abomination of Moab, and for Milcom the abomination of the children of Ammon, did the king defile. (WEB KJV JPS ASV DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV)
2 Kings 23:16 As Josiah turned himself, he spied the tombs that were there in the mountain; and he sent, and took the bones out of the tombs, and burned them on the altar, and defiled it, according to the word of Yahweh which the man of God proclaimed, who proclaimed these things. (Root in WEB JPS ASV DBY YLT NAS RSV NIV)
2 Chronicles 36:14 All the chiefs of the priests also, and the people, increased their transgressions, according to all the abominations of the nations; and they defiled the house of Jehovah which he had hallowed in Jerusalem. (Root in DBY YLT NAS)
Song of Songs 5:3 I have put off my coat; how shall I put it on? I have washed my feet; how shall I defile them? (KJV JPS ASV WBS YLT)
Isaiah 23:9 It was the purpose of the Lord of armies to put pride to shame, to make sport of the glory of those who are honoured in the earth. (See NAS RSV)
Isaiah 30:22 You shall defile the overlaying of your engraved images of silver, and the plating of your molten images of gold. You shall cast them away as an unclean thing. You shall tell it, "Go away!" (WEB KJV JPS ASV DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)
Jeremiah 2:7 I brought you into a plentiful land, to eat its fruit and its goodness; but when you entered, you defiled my land, and made my heritage an abomination. (Root in WEB KJV JPS ASV DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)
Jeremiah 7:30 For the children of Judah have done that which is evil in my sight, says Yahweh: they have set their abominations in the house which is called by my name, to defile it. (WEB JPS ASV DBY YLT NAS RSV NIV)
Jeremiah 32:34 But they set their abominations in the house which is called by my name, to defile it. (WEB KJV JPS ASV DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)
Ezekiel 7:21 I will give it into the hands of the strangers for a prey, and to the wicked of the earth for a spoil; and they shall profane it. (See NIV)
Ezekiel 7:22 My face will I turn also from them, and they shall pollute my secret place: for the robbers shall enter into it, and defile it. (KJV WBS)
Ezekiel 9:7 He said to them, Defile the house, and fill the courts with the slain. Go forth! They went forth, and struck in the city. (WEB KJV JPS ASV DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)
Ezekiel 14:11 that the house of Israel may go no more astray from me, neither defile themselves any more with all their transgressions; but that they may be my people, and I may be their God, says the Lord Yahweh. (WEB JPS ASV YLT NAS RSV NIV)
Ezekiel 18:6 and has not eaten on the mountains, neither has lifted up his eyes to the idols of the house of Israel, neither has defiled his neighbor's wife, neither has come near to a woman in her impurity, (Root in WEB KJV JPS ASV DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)
Ezekiel 18:15 who has not eaten on the mountains, neither has lifted up his eyes to the idols of the house of Israel, has not defiled his neighbor's wife, (Root in WEB KJV JPS ASV DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)
Ezekiel 20:7 I said to them, Cast away every man the abominations of his eyes, and don't defile yourselves with the idols of Egypt; I am Yahweh your God. (WEB KJV JPS ASV DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)
Ezekiel 20:18 I said to their children in the wilderness, Don't walk in the statutes of your fathers, neither observe their ordinances, nor defile yourselves with their idols. (WEB KJV JPS ASV DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)
Ezekiel 20:26 and I defiled them by their own gifts, in that they devoted all that opened the womb, that I might make them desolate, to the end that they might know that I am Jehovah. (Root in DBY YLT RSV NIV)
Ezekiel 20:30 Therefore say unto the house of Israel, Thus saith the Lord Jehovah: Do ye defile yourselves after the manner of your fathers? and do ye commit fornication after their abominations? (DBY YLT NAS RSV NIV)
Ezekiel 20:31 And when ye offer your gifts, making your sons to pass through the fire, ye defile yourselves with all your idols, even unto this day; and shall I be inquired of by you, O house of Israel? As I live, saith the Lord Jehovah, I will not be inquired of by you. (DBY YLT RSV NIV)
Ezekiel 22:3 You shall say, Thus says the Lord Yahweh: A city that sheds blood in the midst of her, that her time may come, and that makes idols against herself to defile her! (WEB KJV JPS ASV DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)
Ezekiel 23:17 The Babylonians came to her into the bed of love, and they defiled her with their prostitution, and she was polluted with them, and her soul was alienated from them. (Root in WEB KJV JPS ASV DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)
Ezekiel 28:7 therefore, behold, I will bring strangers on you, the terrible of the nations; and they shall draw their swords against the beauty of your wisdom, and they shall defile your brightness. (WEB KJV JPS ASV WBS NAS RSV)
Ezekiel 28:9 Wilt thou yet say before him that slayeth thee, I am God? but thou art man, and not God, in the hand of him that woundeth thee. (See JPS)
Ezekiel 33:26 You stand on your sword, you work abomination, and every one of you defiles his neighbor's wife: and shall you possess the land? (Root in WEB KJV JPS ASV DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)
Ezekiel 36:17 Son of man, when the house of Israel lived in their own land, they defiled it by their way and by their doings: their way before me was as the uncleanness of a woman in her impurity. (Root in WEB KJV JPS ASV DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)
Ezekiel 37:23 neither shall they defile themselves any more with their idols, nor with their detestable things, nor with any of their transgressions; but I will save them out of all their dwelling places, in which they have sinned, and will cleanse them: so shall they be my people, and I will be their God. (WEB KJV JPS ASV DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)
Ezekiel 43:7 He said to me, Son of man, this is the place of my throne, and the place of the soles of my feet, where I will dwell in the midst of the children of Israel forever. The house of Israel shall no more defile my holy name, neither they, nor their kings, by their prostitution, and by the dead bodies of their kings in their high places; (WEB KJV JPS ASV DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)
Ezekiel 44:25 They shall go in to no dead person to defile themselves; but for father, or for mother, or for son, or for daughter, for brother, or for sister who has had no husband, they may defile themselves. (WEB KJV JPS ASV WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)
Daniel 1:8 But Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the king's dainties, nor with the wine which he drank: therefore he requested of the prince of the eunuchs that he might not defile himself. (WEB KJV JPS ASV WBS NAS RSV NIV)