Ancient Oils

oils of the ancient scripture

The origins of myrrh and frankincense are traced to the Arabian Peninsula.

According to Herodotus (5th century BC): “Arabia is the only country which produces frankincense, myrrh, cassia and cinnamon…the trees bearing the frankincense are guarded by winged serpents of small size and various colors.”

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Myrrh is a resin, or sap-like substance, that comes from a tree called Commiphora myrrha, common in Africa or the Middle East. Myrrh is botanically related to Frankincense, and is one of the most widely used essential oils in the world. The myrrh tree is distinctive due to its white flowers and knotted trunk.

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Sandalwood oil is extracted from the woods for use. Sandalwood is the second most expensive wood in the world, right after African Blackwood. Both the wood and the oil produce a distinctive fragrance that has been highly valued for centuries.

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Onycha, spoken of in Exodus 30:34, was one of the ingredients of the sacred perfume. It consists of the shells of several kinds of mussels, which when burned emit a strong odor.

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