wosh, wosh'-ing: The two usual Hebrew words for "wash" are rachats, and kabhac, the former being normally used of persons or of sacrificial animals (Ge 18:4, etc., often translated "bathe"; Le 15:5, etc.), and the latter of things (Ge 49:11, etc.), the exceptions to this distinction being few (for rachats, 1Ki 22:38 margin; for kabhac, Ps 51:2,7; Jer 2:22; 4:14). Much less common are duach (2Ch 4:6; Isa 4:4; Eze 40:38) and shataph (1Ki 22:38; Job 14:19; Eze 16:9), translated "rinse" in Le 6:28; 15:11-12. In Ne 4:23 the King James Version has "washing" and the Revised Version (British and American) "water" for mayim, but the text is hopelessly obscure (compare the Revised Version margin). In the Apocrypha and New Testament the range of terms is wider. Most common is nipto (Mt 6:17, etc.), with aponipto in Mt 27:24. Of the other terms, louo (Susanna verses 15,17; Joh 13:10, etc.), with apolouo (Ac 22:16; 1Co 6:11) and the noun loutron (Sirach 34:25b; Eph 5:26; Tit 3:5), usually has a sacral significance. On baptizo (Sirach 34:25a; Mr 7:4; Lu 11:38), with the noun baptismos (Mr 7:4 (text?); Heb 9:10), see BAPTISM. In Lu 5:2; Re 7:14; 22:14 the Revised Version (British and American) occurs pluno, while Judith 10:3 has perikluzo. Virtually, as far as meaning is concerned, all these words are interchangeable. Of the figurative uses of washing, the most common and obvious is that of cleansing from sin (Ps 51:2; Isa 1:16, etc.), but, with an entirely different figure, "to wash in" may signify "to enjoy in plenty" (Ge 49:11; Job 29:6; the meaning in Song 5:12 is uncertain). Washing of the hands, in token of innocence, is found in De 21:6; Mt 27:24.
The "washing balls" of Susanna verse 17 (smegma, a very rare word) were of soap.
Burton Scott Easton