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Leviticus 22:17-33

Context
Regulations for Offering Votive and Freewill Offerings

22:17 The Lord spoke to Moses: 22:18 “Speak to Aaron, his sons, and all the Israelites and tell them, ‘When any man 1  from the house of Israel or from the foreigners in Israel 2  presents his offering for any of the votive or freewill offerings which they present to the Lord as a burnt offering, 22:19 if it is to be acceptable for your benefit 3  it must be a flawless male from the cattle, sheep, or goats. 22:20 You must not present anything that has a flaw, 4  because it will not be acceptable for your benefit. 5  22:21 If a man presents a peace offering sacrifice to the Lord for a special votive offering 6  or for a freewill offering from the herd or the flock, it must be flawless to be acceptable; 7  it must have no flaw. 8 

22:22 “‘You must not present to the Lord something blind, or with a broken bone, or mutilated, or with a running sore, 9  or with a festering eruption, or with a feverish rash. 10  You must not give any of these as a gift 11  on the altar to the Lord. 22:23 As for an ox 12  or a sheep with a limb too long or stunted, 13  you may present it as a freewill offering, but it will not be acceptable for a votive offering. 14  22:24 You must not present to the Lord something with testicles that are bruised, crushed, torn, or cut off; 15  you must not do this in your land. 22:25 Even from a foreigner 16  you must not present the food of your God from such animals as these, for they are ruined and flawed; 17  they will not be acceptable for your benefit.’”

22:26 The Lord spoke to Moses: 22:27 “When an ox, lamb, or goat is born, it must be under the care of 18  its mother seven days, but from the eighth day onward it will be acceptable as an offering gift 19  to the Lord. 22:28 You must not slaughter an ox or a sheep and its young 20  on the same day. 21  22:29 When you sacrifice a thanksgiving offering to the Lord, you must sacrifice it so that it is acceptable for your benefit. 22  22:30 On that very day 23  it must be eaten; you must not leave any part of it 24  over until morning. I am the Lord.

22:31 “You must be sure to do my commandments. 25  I am the Lord. 22:32 You must not profane my holy name, and I will be sanctified in the midst of the Israelites. I am the Lord who sanctifies you, 22:33 the one who brought you out from the land of Egypt to be your God. 26  I am the Lord.”

1 tn Heb “Man, man.” The reduplication is a way of saying “any man” (cf. Lev 15:2; 17:3, etc.; see the distributive repetition of the noun in GKC 395-96 §123.c).

2 tn Heb “and from the foreigner [singular] in Israel.” Some medieval Hebrew mss, Smr, LXX, Syriac, and Vulgate add “who resides” after “foreigner”: “the foreigner who resides in Israel” (cf., e.g., Lev 20:2 above).

3 tn Heb “for your acceptance.” See Lev 1:3-4 above and the notes there.

4 tn Heb “all which in it [is] a flaw.” Note that the same term is used for physical flaws of people in Lev 21:17-24. Cf. KJV, ASV, NRSV “blemish”; NASB, NIV, TEV “defect”; NLT “with physical defects.”

5 tn Heb “not for acceptance shall it be for you”; NIV “it will not be accepted on your behalf” (NRSV and NLT both similar).

6 tn The meaning of the expression לְפַלֵּא־נֶדֶר (lÿfalle-neder) rendered here “for a special votive offering” is much debated. Some take it as an expression for fulfilling a vow, “to fulfill a vow” (e.g., HALOT 927-28 s.v. פלא piel and NASB; cf. NAB, NRSV “in fulfillment of a vow”) or, alternatively, “to make a vow” or “for making a vow” (HALOT 928 s.v. פלא piel [II פלא]). Perhaps it refers to the making a special vow, from the verb פָלַא (pala’, “to be wonderful, to be remarkable”); cf. J. Milgrom, Numbers (JPSTC), 44. B. A. Levine, Leviticus (JPSTC), 151 and 193, suggests that this is a special term for “setting aside a votive offering” (related to פָלָה [palah, “to set aside”]). In general, the point of the expression seems to be that this sacrifice arises as a special gift to God out of special circumstances in the life of the worshiper.

7 tn Heb “for acceptance”; NAB “if it is to find acceptance.”

8 tn Heb “all/any flaw shall not be in it.”

9 tn Or perhaps “a wart” (cf. NIV; HALOT 383 s.v. יַבֶּלֶת, but see the remarks in J. E. Hartley, Leviticus [WBC], 358).

10 sn See the note on Lev 21:20 above.

11 sn This term for offering “gift” is explained in the note on Lev 1:9.

12 tn Heb “And an ox.”

13 tn Heb “and stunted” (see HALOT 1102 s.v. I קלט).

14 sn The freewill offering was voluntary, so the regulations regarding it were more relaxed. Once a vow was made, the paying of it was not voluntary (see B. A. Levine, Leviticus [JPSTC], 151-52, for very helpful remarks on this verse).

15 sn Compare Lev 21:20b.

16 tn Heb “And from the hand of a son of a foreigner.”

17 tn Heb “for their being ruined [is] in them, flaw is in them”; NRSV “are mutilated, with a blemish in them”; NIV “are deformed and have defects.” The MT term מָשְׁחָתָם (moshkhatam, “their being ruined”) is a Muqtal form (= Hophal participle) from שָׁחַת (shakhat, “to ruin”). Smr has plural בהם משׁחתים (“deformities in them”; cf. the LXX translation). The Qumran Leviticus scroll (11QpaleoLev) has תימ הם[…], in which case the restored participle would appear to be the same as Smr, but there is no בְּ (bet) preposition before the pronoun, yielding “they are deformed” (see D. N. Freedman and K. A. Mathews, The Paleo-Hebrew Leviticus Scroll, 41 and the remarks in J. E. Hartley, Leviticus [WBC], 358).

18 tn The words “the care of” are not in the Hebrew text, but are implied. Although many modern English versions render “with its mother” (e.g., NAB, NASB, NIV, NRSV, NLT), the literal phrase “under its mother” refers to the young animal nursing from its mother. Cf. KJV, ASV “it shall be seven days under the dam,” which would probably be misunderstood.

19 tn Heb “for an offering of a gift.”

20 tn Heb “And an ox or a sheep, it and its son, you shall not slaughter.”

21 tn Heb “in one day.”

22 tn Heb “for your acceptance” (see the notes on Lev 1:3-4 and 22:19 above).

23 tn Heb “On that day”; NIV, NCV “that same day.”

24 tn Heb “from it.”

25 tn Heb “And you shall keep my commandments and you shall do them.” This appears to be a kind of verbal hendiadys, where the first verb is a modifier of the action of the second verb (see GKC 386 §120.d, although שָׁמַר [shamar, “to keep”] is not cited there; cf. Lev 20:8, etc.).

26 tn Heb “to be to you for God.”



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