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28. Offerings and Feasts

And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying, 2Command the children of Israel, and say unto them, My offering, and my bread for my sacrifices made by fire, for a sweet savour unto me, shall ye observe to offer unto me in their due season. 3And thou shalt say unto them, This is the offering made by fire which ye shall offer unto the Lord; two lambs of the first year without spot day by day, for a continual burnt offering. 4The one lamb shalt thou offer in the morning, and the other lamb shalt thou offer at even; 5And a tenth part of an ephah of flour for a meat offering, mingled with the fourth part of an hin of beaten oil. 6 It is a continual burnt offering, which was ordained in mount Sinai for a sweet savour, a sacrifice made by fire unto the Lord. 7And the drink offering thereof shall be the fourth part of an hin for the one lamb: in the holy place shalt thou cause the strong wine to be poured unto the Lord for a drink offering. 8And the other lamb shalt thou offer at even: as the meat offering of the morning, and as the drink offering thereof, thou shalt offer it, a sacrifice made by fire, of a sweet savour unto the Lord.

9And on the sabbath day two lambs of the first year without spot, and two tenth deals of flour for a meat offering, mingled with oil, and the drink offering thereof: 10 This is the burnt offering of every sabbath, beside the continual burnt offering, and his drink offering.

11And in the beginnings of your months ye shall offer a burnt offering unto the Lord; two young bullocks, and one ram, seven lambs of the first year without spot; 12And three tenth deals of flour for a meat offering, mingled with oil, for one bullock; and two tenth deals of flour for a meat offering, mingled with oil, for one ram; 13And a several tenth deal of flour mingled with oil for a meat offering unto one lamb; for a burnt offering of a sweet savour, a sacrifice made by fire unto the Lord. 14And their drink offerings shall be half an hin of wine unto a bullock, and the third part of an hin unto a ram, and a fourth part of an hin unto a lamb: this is the burnt offering of every month throughout the months of the year. 15And one kid of the goats for a sin offering unto the Lord shall be offered, beside the continual burnt offering, and his drink offering. 16And in the fourteenth day of the first month is the passover of the Lord. 17And in the fifteenth day of this month is the feast: seven days shall unleavened bread be eaten. 18In the first day shall be an holy convocation; ye shall do no manner of servile work therein: 19But ye shall offer a sacrifice made by fire for a burnt offering unto the Lord; two young bullocks, and one ram, and seven lambs of the first year: they shall be unto you without blemish: 20And their meat offering shall be of flour mingled with oil: three tenth deals shall ye offer for a bullock, and two tenth deals for a ram; 21A several tenth deal shalt thou offer for every lamb, throughout the seven lambs: 22And one goat for a sin offering, to make an atonement for you. 23Ye shall offer these beside the burnt offering in the morning, which is for a continual burnt offering. 24After this manner ye shall offer daily, throughout the seven days, the meat of the sacrifice made by fire, of a sweet savour unto the Lord: it shall be offered beside the continual burnt offering, and his drink offering. 25And on the seventh day ye shall have an holy convocation; ye shall do no servile work.

26Also in the day of the firstfruits, when ye bring a new meat offering unto the Lord, after your weeks be out, ye shall have an holy convocation; ye shall do no servile work: 27But ye shall offer the burnt offering for a sweet savour unto the Lord; two young bullocks, one ram, seven lambs of the first year; 28And their meat offering of flour mingled with oil, three tenth deals unto one bullock, two tenth deals unto one ram, 29A several tenth deal unto one lamb, throughout the seven lambs; 30 And one kid of the goats, to make an atonement for you. 31Ye shall offer them beside the continual burnt offering, and his meat offering, (they shall be unto you without blemish) and their drink offerings.

1. And the Lord spake unto Moses. Moses, being about to speak again of the “continual” sacrifice, premises in general that the people should diligently follow in their offerings whatever God has enjoined; for by the word “observe,” (custodiendi,) not only diligence, but obedience is also expressed. But, in order that they should more earnestly beware of every transgression, God calls either that which was wont daily to be placed on the table, or that which was annexed to the burnt-offerings, His bread, as if He ate of it after the manner of men. It is indeed a hard expression, but the rudeness of His ancient people obliged Him to speak thus grossly, that, on the one hand, they might learn this rite to be acceptable to God, just as food is acceptable to man; and, on the other, that they might study to offer their sacrifices more purely and chastely.

3. And thou shalt say unto them. He repeats what we have seen in Exodus, that they should kill two lambs daily, one in the morning, and the other in the evening; but he speaks more fully of the concomitants of flour and wine, and also refers to the antiquity of this kind of sacrifice as its recommendation, because it began to be offered to God on Mount Sinai, and was a “savor of rest.” 236236     A.V., “a sweet savor.” Margin, “Heb., a savor of my rest." The libation of wine, of which mention is made, was also in use among heathen nations; but, inasmuch as it was without the command and promise of God, it could not but be unmeaning (insipidum ) 237237     Fr., “c’a este moins que ripopper, comme on dit;” Ripope, i.e.,bad wine. And it is probable (as we have seen elsewhere) that many of the heathen rites descended from the ancient fathers but as a false and empty imitation; for when they had forgotten the reason of them, all they did could only be a mere theatrical pageantry. But we have said that thus men were reminded always to have God before their eyes in their daily food; and therefore in every way to accustom themselves to cultivate holiness.

9. And on the Sabbath-day. What was omitted in the former passage is here supplied, i.e., that on the Sabbath the continual sacrifice was to be doubled, and two lambs offered instead of one; for it was reasonable that, as the seventh day was peculiarly dedicated to God, it should be exalted above other days by some extraordinary and distinctive mark. He also commands greater sacrifices to be offered at the beginning of the month or new moon, viz., two bullocks and one ram, and a goat for a sin-offering; for we know that the first day of every month was consecrated to God, that the people might more frequently have the remembrance of their religious duties renewed; and the goat for an atonement for sin was added, in order that every month they should present themselves as guilty before God to deprecate His wrath.

16. And in the fourteenth day. It is true that the instruction here given has some connection with the feast of the passover, but since the sacrifices are avowedly treated of, and no mention is made of its other observances, except in this place, I have connected it with the continual sacrifice, as its concomitant or part. Moses cursorily refers, indeed, to what we have already seen, i.e., that the people should abstain from leaven for seven days, and eat unleavened bread; but he afterwards descends to the main point of which he here proposed to treat, viz., that the people should slay two bullocks as a burnt-offering, a ram, and seven lambs, together with a goat for a sin-offering; and that this sacrifice should be repeated through the whole week. In order, then, that the reverence paid to the passover should be increased, this extraordinary sacrifice was added to the continual one, partly that they might thus be more and more stimulated to devote themselves to God; partly that they might acknowledge how familiarly He had embraced them with His favor, inasmuch as He took these offerings from their flocks and herds, and required the sacred feast to be prepared for Him out of their cellars and granaries also; partly, too, that professing themselves to be worthy of eternal death, they should fly to Him to ask for pardon, and at the same time should understand that there was but one way of reconciliation, i.e., when God should be propitiated by sacrifice.

26. Also in the day of thefirst-fruits. Moses delivers the same commandment as to another festival, viz., that on which they offered their first-fruits. Then, also, he instructs them, the continual sacrifice was to be increased by the addition of two bullocks, one ram, seven lambs, a goat for a sin-offering, together with the minha and a libation, with the object, of which I have already spoken. A perplexing difficulty here arises, because in Leviticus 23, one bullock is mentioned instead of two, and, on the contrary, two rams instead of one. 238238     “Josephus and Maimonides understand that they were distinct sacrifices. Aben-Ezra and others think that it was left to the priest which he would offer.” — Brightwell on the Pentateuch, in loco. Some think that an option was left to the priests in this matter; but when I consider how precisely God’s commands were given in everything, I question whether such an alternative was left to their discretion. The notion that God had once been content with a single bullock, as some think, because they were not abundant in the desert, appears to me a subterfuge. I confess I do not know how to get out of this difficulty, unless perhaps we say, that inasmuch as sufficiently exact provision had been made, in all other particulars, that nothing should be done without reason, in this respect only they were reminded that God in Himself cares not for greater or less victims. Nor does any reverence prevent us from saying that, as it sometimes happens in minor matters, a wrong number may have crept in from the carelessness of scribes; 239239     The conjecture of C. receives no support from the modern collections of various readings; for though the number two is wanting in one of Kennicott’s MSS., the word for bullocks is in the plural in that same MS.; and the two most ancient versions, viz., the LXX. and the Syriac agree with the received text both here and in Leviticus 23:8. — W. and this is probably the most natural solution. The more correct reading, in my opinion, is, that they should offer two bullocks and one ram; but since it is elsewhere explained why God appointed this day, he only briefly recites here: “When they bring the fainha with the first-fruits."


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