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Leviticus 3:1-17

Context
Peace Offering Regulations: Animal from the Herd

3:1 “‘Now if his offering is a peace offering sacrifice, 1  if he presents an offering from the herd, he must present before the Lord a flawless male or a female. 2  3:2 He must lay his hand on the head of his offering and slaughter it at the entrance of the Meeting Tent, and the sons of Aaron, the priests, must splash the blood against the altar’s sides. 3  3:3 Then the one presenting the offering 4  must present a gift to the Lord from the peace offering sacrifice: He must remove the fat that covers the entrails and all the fat that surrounds the entrails, 5  3:4 the two kidneys with the fat on their sinews, and the protruding lobe on the liver (which he is to remove along with the kidneys). 6  3:5 Then the sons of Aaron must offer it up in smoke on the altar atop the burnt offering that is on the wood in the fire as a gift of a soothing aroma to the Lord. 7 

Animal from the Flock

3:6 “‘If his offering for a peace offering sacrifice to the Lord is from the flock, he must present a flawless male or female. 8  3:7 If he presents a sheep as his offering, he must present it before the Lord. 3:8 He must lay his hand on the head of his offering and slaughter it before the Meeting Tent, and the sons of Aaron must splash 9  its blood against the altar’s sides. 3:9 Then he must present a gift to the Lord from the peace offering sacrifice: He must remove all the fatty tail up to the end of the spine, the fat covering the entrails, and all the fat on the entrails, 10  3:10 the two kidneys with the fat on their sinews, and the protruding lobe on the liver (which he is to remove along with the kidneys). 11  3:11 Then the priest must offer it up in smoke on the altar as a food gift to the Lord. 12 

3:12 “‘If his offering is a goat he must present it before the Lord, 3:13 lay his hand on its head, and slaughter it before the Meeting Tent, and the sons of Aaron must splash its blood against the altar’s sides. 3:14 Then he must present from it his offering as a gift to the Lord: the fat which covers the entrails and all the fat on the entrails, 13  3:15 the two kidneys with the fat on their sinews, and the protruding lobe on the liver (which he is to remove along with the kidneys). 14  3:16 Then the priest must offer them up in smoke on the altar as a food gift for a soothing aroma – all the fat belongs to the Lord. 3:17 This is 15  a perpetual statute throughout your generations 16  in all the places where you live: You must never eat any fat or any blood.’” 17 

Leviticus 7:1-38

Context
The Guilt Offering

7:1 “‘This is the law of the guilt offering. It is most holy. 7:2 In the place where they slaughter the burnt offering they must slaughter the guilt offering, and the officiating priest 18  must splash 19  the blood against the altar’s sides. 7:3 Then the one making the offering 20  must present all its fat: the fatty tail, the fat covering the entrails, 7:4 the two kidneys and the fat on their sinews, and the protruding lobe on the liver (which he must remove along with the kidneys). 21  7:5 Then the priest must offer them up in smoke on the altar 22  as a gift to the Lord. It is a guilt offering. 7:6 Any male among the priests may eat it. It must be eaten in a holy place. It is most holy. 23  7:7 The law is the same for the sin offering and the guilt offering; 24  it belongs to the priest who makes atonement with it.

Priestly Portions of Burnt and Grain Offerings

7:8 “‘As for the priest who presents someone’s burnt offering, the hide of that burnt offering which he presented belongs to him. 7:9 Every grain offering which is baked in the oven or 25  made in the pan 26  or on the griddle belongs to the priest who presented it. 7:10 Every grain offering, whether mixed with olive oil or dry, belongs to all the sons of Aaron, each one alike. 27 

The Peace Offering

7:11 “‘This is the law of the peace offering sacrifice which he 28  is to present to the Lord. 7:12 If he presents it on account of thanksgiving, 29  along with the thank offering sacrifice he must present unleavened loaves mixed with olive oil, unleavened wafers smeared with olive oil, 30  and well soaked 31  ring-shaped loaves made of choice wheat flour 32  mixed with olive oil. 7:13 He must present this grain offering 33  in addition to ring-shaped loaves of leavened bread which regularly accompany 34  the sacrifice of his thanksgiving peace offering. 7:14 He must present one of each kind of grain offering 35  as a contribution offering 36  to the Lord; it belongs to the priest who splashes the blood of the peace offering. 7:15 The meat of his 37  thanksgiving peace offering must be eaten on the day of his offering; he must not set any of it aside until morning.

7:16 “‘If his offering is a votive or freewill sacrifice, 38  it may be eaten on the day he presents his sacrifice, and also the leftovers from it may be eaten on the next day, 39  7:17 but the leftovers from the meat of the sacrifice must be burned up in the fire 40  on the third day. 7:18 If some of the meat of his peace offering sacrifice is ever eaten on the third day it will not be accepted; it will not be accounted to the one who presented it, since it is spoiled, 41  and the person who eats from it will bear his punishment for iniquity. 42  7:19 The meat which touches anything ceremonially 43  unclean must not be eaten; it must be burned up in the fire. As for ceremonially clean meat, 44  everyone who is ceremonially clean may eat the meat. 7:20 The person who eats meat from the peace offering sacrifice which belongs to the Lord while his uncleanness persists 45  will be cut off from his people. 46  7:21 When a person touches anything unclean (whether human uncleanness, or an unclean animal, or an unclean detestable creature) 47  and eats some of the meat of the peace offering sacrifice which belongs to the Lord, that person will be cut off from his people.’” 48 

Sacrificial Instructions for the Common People: Fat and Blood

7:22 Then the Lord spoke to Moses: 49  7:23 “Tell the Israelites, ‘You must not eat any fat of an ox, sheep, or goat. 7:24 Moreover, the fat of an animal that has died of natural causes 50  and the fat of an animal torn by beasts may be used for any other purpose, 51  but you must certainly never eat it. 7:25 If anyone eats fat from the animal from which he presents a gift to the Lord, that person will be cut off from his people. 52  7:26 And you must not eat any blood of the birds or the domesticated land animals in any of the places where you live. 53  7:27 Any person who eats any blood – that person will be cut off from his people.’” 54 

Priestly Portions of Peace Offerings

7:28 Then the Lord spoke to Moses: 55  7:29 “Tell the Israelites, ‘The one who presents his peace offering sacrifice to the Lord must bring his offering to the Lord from his peace offering sacrifice. 7:30 With his own hands he must bring the Lord’s gifts. He must bring the fat with the breast 56  to wave the breast as a wave offering before the Lord, 57  7:31 and the priest must offer the fat up in smoke on the altar, but the breast will belong to Aaron and his sons. 7:32 The right thigh you must give as a contribution offering 58  to the priest from your peace offering sacrifices. 7:33 The one from Aaron’s sons who presents the blood of the peace offering and fat will have the right thigh as his share, 7:34 for the breast of the wave offering and the thigh of the contribution offering I have taken from the Israelites out of their peace offering sacrifices and have given them to Aaron the priest and to his sons from the people of Israel as a perpetual allotted portion.’” 59 

7:35 This is the allotment of Aaron and the allotment of his sons from the Lord’s gifts on the day Moses 60  presented them to serve as priests 61  to the Lord. 7:36 This is what the Lord commanded to give to them from the Israelites on the day Moses 62  anointed them 63  – a perpetual allotted portion throughout their generations. 64 

Summary of Sacrificial Regulations in Leviticus 6:8-7:36

7:37 This is the law 65  for the burnt offering, the grain offering, 66  the sin offering, the guilt offering, the ordination offering, 67  and the peace offering sacrifice, 7:38 which the Lord commanded Moses on Mount Sinai on the day he commanded the Israelites to present their offerings to the Lord in the wilderness of Sinai.

1 sn The peace offering sacrifice primarily enacted and practiced communion between God and man (and between the people of God). This was illustrated by the fact that the fat parts of the animal were consumed on the altar of the Lord but the meat was consumed by the worshipers in a meal before God. This is the only kind of offering in which common worshipers partook of the meat of the animal. When there was a series of offerings that included a peace offering (see, e.g., Lev 9:8-21, sin offerings, burnt offerings, and afterward the peace offerings in vv. 18-21), the peace offering was always offered last because it expressed the fact that all was well between God and his worshiper(s). There were various kinds of peace offerings, depending on the worship intended on the specific occasion. The “thank offering” expressed thanksgiving (e.g., Lev 7:11-15; 22:29-30), the “votive offering” fulfilled a vow (e.g., Lev 7:16-18; 22:21-25), and the “freewill offering” was offered as an expression of devotion and praise to God (e.g., Lev 7:16-18; 22:21-25). The so-called “ordination offering” was also a kind of peace offering that was used to consecrate the priests at their ordination (e.g., Exod 29:19-34; Lev 7:37; 8:22-32). See R. E. Averbeck, NIDOTTE 1:1066-73 and 4:135-43.

2 tn Heb “if a male if a female, perfect he shall present it before the Lord.” The “or” in the present translation (and most other English versions) is not present in the Hebrew text here, but see v. 6 below.

3 tn See the remarks on Lev 1:3-5 above for some of the details of translation here.

4 tn Heb “Then he”; the referent (the person presenting the offering) has been specified in the translation for clarity (cf. the note on Lev 1:5).

5 tn Heb “and all the fat on the entrails.” The fat layer that covers the entrails as a whole (i.e., “that covers the entrails”) is different from the fat that surrounds and adheres to the various organs (“on the entrails,” i.e., surrounding them; J. Milgrom, Leviticus [AB], 1:205-7).

6 tn Heb “and the protruding lobe on the liver on the kidneys he shall remove it.” Cf. NRSV “the appendage of the liver”; NIV “the covering of the liver” (KJV “the caul above the liver”).

7 tn Or “on the fire – [it is] a gift of a soothing aroma to the Lord” (see Lev 1:13b, 17b, and the note on 1:9b).

8 tn Heb “a male or female without defect he shall present it”; cf. NLT “must have no physical defects.”

9 tn See the note on this term at 1:5.

10 sn See the note on this phrase in 3:3.

11 tn Heb “and the protruding lobe on the liver on the kidneys he shall remove it.”

12 tn Heb “food, a gift to the Lord.”

13 sn See the note on this phrase in 3:3.

14 tn Heb “and the protruding lobe on the liver on the kidneys he shall remove it.”

15 tn The words “This is” are not in the Hebrew text, but are supplied due to requirements of English style.

16 tn Heb “for your generations”; NAB “for your descendants”; NLT “for you and all your descendants.”

17 tn Heb “all fat and all blood you must not eat.”

18 tn Heb “he”; the referent (the officiating priest) has been specified in the translation for clarity. This priest was responsible for any actions involving direct contact with the altar (e.g., the splashing of the blood).

19 tn See the note on Lev 1:5.

20 tn Heb “then he.” This pronoun refers to the offerer, who was responsible for slaughtering the animal. Contrast v. 2 above and v. 5 below.

21 tn See the notes on Lev 3:3-4.

22 tn See the note on Lev 1:9 above.

23 tn Heb “holiness of holinesses [or holy of holies] it is”; NAB “most sacred”; TEV “very holy.”

24 tn Heb “like the sin offering like the guilt offering, one law to them.”

25 tn Heb “and” rather than “or” (cf. also the next “or”).

26 tn Heb “and all made in the pan”; cf. KJV “fryingpan”; NAB “deep-fried in a pot.”

27 tn Heb “a man like his brother.”

28 tn This “he” pronoun refers to the offerer. Smr and LXX have plural “they.”

29 tn Or “for a thank offering.”

30 tn See the notes on Lev 2:4.

31 tn See the note on Lev 6:21 [6:14 HT].

32 tn Heb “choice wheat flour well soaked ring-shaped loaves.” See the note on Lev 2:1.

33 tn The rendering “this [grain] offering” is more literally “his offering,” but it refers to the series of grain offerings listed just previously in v. 12.

34 tn The words “which regularly accompany” are not in the Hebrew text, but are supplied for clarity.

sn The translation “[which regularly accompany]…” is based on the practice of bringing bread (and wine) to eat with the portions of the peace offering meat eaten by the priests and worshipers (see v. 14 and Num 15:1-13). This was in addition to the memorial portion of the unleavened bread that was offered to the Lord on the altar (cf. Lev 2:2, 9, and the note on 7:12).

35 tn Here the Hebrew text reads “offering” (קָרְבָּן, qorbban), not “grain offering” (מִנְחָה, minkhah), but in this context the term refers once again to the list in 7:12.

36 tn The term rendered “contribution offering” is תְּרוּמָה (tÿrumah), which generally refers to that which is set aside from the offerings to the Lord as prebends for the officiating priests (cf. esp. Lev 7:28-34 and R. E. Averbeck, NIDOTTE 4:335-37). Cf. TEV “as a special contribution.”

37 tn In the verse “his” refers to the offerer.

38 tn For the distinction between votive and freewill offerings see the note on Lev 22:23 and the literature cited there.

39 tn Heb “and on the next day and the left over from it shall be eaten.”

40 tn Heb “burned with fire,” an expression which is sometimes redundant in English, but here means “burned up,” “burned up entirely” (likewise in v. 19).

41 tn Or “desecrated,” or “defiled,” or “forbidden.” For this difficult term see J. Milgrom, Leviticus (AB), 1:422. Cf. NIV “it is impure”; NCV “it will become unclean”; NLT “will be contaminated.”

42 tn Heb “his iniquity he shall bear” (cf. Lev 5:1); NIV “will be held responsible”; NRSV “shall incur guilt”; TEV “will suffer the consequences.”

43 tn The word “ceremonially” has been supplied in the translation both here and in the following sentence to clarify that the uncleanness involved is ritual or ceremonial in nature.

44 tn The Hebrew has simply “the flesh,” but this certainly refers to “clean” flesh in contrast to the unclean flesh in the first half of the verse.

45 tn Heb “and his unclean condition is on him.”

46 sn The exact meaning of this penalty clause is not certain. It could mean that he will be executed, whether by God or by man, he will be excommunicated from sanctuary worship and/or community benefits (cf. TEV, CEV), or his line will be terminated by God (i.e., extirpation), etc. See J. E. Hartley, Leviticus (WBC), 100; J. Milgrom, Leviticus (AB), 1:457-60; and B. A. Levine, Leviticus (JPSTC), 241-42 for further discussion.

47 sn For these categories of unclean animals see Lev 11.

48 sn For the interpretation of this last clause see the note on Lev 7:20.

49 sn See the note on Lev 6:8 [6:1 HT] above.

50 tn Heb “carcass,” referring to the carcass of an animal that has died on its own, not the carcass of an animal slaughtered for sacrifice or killed by wild beasts. This has been clarified in the translation by supplying the phrase “of natural causes”; cf. NAB, TEV “that has died a natural death.”

51 tn Heb “shall be used for any work”; cf. NIV, NLT “may be used for any other purpose.”

52 sn See the note on Lev 7:20.

53 tn Heb “and any blood you must not eat in any of your dwelling places, to the bird and to the animal.”

54 sn See the note on Lev 7:20.

55 sn See the note on Lev 6:8 [6:1 HT].

56 tn Heb “on the breast.”

57 tc Many Hebrew mss and some versions (esp. the LXX) limit the offerings in the last part of this verse to the fat portions, specifically, the fat and the fat lobe of the liver (see the BHS footnote). The verse is somewhat awkward in Hebrew but nevertheless correct.

tn Heb “the breast to wave it, a wave offering before the Lord.” Other possible translations are “to elevate the breast [as] an elevation offering before the Lord” (cf. NRSV) or “to present the breast [as] a presentation offering before the Lord.” See J. E. Hartley, Leviticus (WBC), 91, J. Milgrom, Leviticus (AB), 1:430-31, 461-72, and R. E. Averbeck, NIDOTTE 3:63-67.

58 tn Older English versions (e.g., KJV, ASV) translate this Hebrew term (תְּרוּמָה, tÿrumah) “heave offering,” derived from the idea of “to raise, to lift” found in the verbal root (cf. NAB “a raised offering”). “Contribution offering” is a better English rendering because it refers to something “taken out from” (i.e., “lifted up from”; cf. the Hebrew term הֵרִים (herim) in, e.g., Lev 2:9; 4:8, etc.) the offering as a special contribution to the specific priest who presided over the offering procedures in any particular instance (see the next verse and R. E. Averbeck, NIDOTTE 4:335-37). Cf. TEV “as a special contribution”; NCV, NLT “as a gift.”

59 tn Or “a perpetual regulation”; cf. NASB “as their due forever”; NRSV “as a perpetual due”; NLT “their regular share.”

60 tn Heb “the day he”; the referent (Moses) has been specified in the translation for clarity.

61 tn Heb “in the day of he presented them to serve as priests to the Lord.” The grammar here is relatively unusual. First, the verb “presented” appears to be in the perfect rather than the infinitive (but see GKC 531), the latter being normal in such temporal expressions. Second, the active verb form appears to be used as a passive plural (“they were presented”). However, if it is translated active and singular then Moses would be the subject: “on the day he [Moses] offered them [Aaron and his sons].”

62 tn Heb “the day he”; the referent (Moses) has been specified in the translation for clarity.

63 tn Heb “which the Lord commanded to give to them in the day he anointed them from the children of Israel.” Thus v. 36 is tied syntactically to v. 35 (see the note there).

64 tn Heb “for your generations”; cf. NIV “for the generations to come”; TEV “for all time to come.”

65 sn The Hebrew term translated “law” (תוֹרָה [torah]) occurs up to this point in the book only in Lev 6:9 [6:2 HT], 14 [7 HT], 25 [18 HT], 7:1, 7, 11, and here in 7:37. This suggests that Lev 7:37-38 is a summary of only this section of the book (i.e., Lev 6:8 [6:1 HT]-7:36), not all of Lev 1-7.

66 tc In the MT only “the grain offering” lacks a connecting ו (vav). However, many Hebrew , Smr, LXX, Syriac, and some mss of Tg. Onq. have the ו (vav) on “the grain offering” as well.

67 sn The inclusion of the “ordination offering” (מִלּוּאִים, miluim; the term apparently comes from the notion of “filling [of the hand],” cf. Lev 8:33) here anticipates Lev 8. It is a kind of peace offering, as the regulations in Lev 8:22-32 will show (cf. Exod 29:19-34). In the context of the ordination ritual for the priests it fits into the sequence of offerings as a peace offering would: sin offering (Lev 8:14-17), burnt and grain offering (Lev 8:18-21), and finally peace (i.e., ordination) offering (Lev 8:22-32). Moreover, in this case, Moses received the breast of the ordination offering as his due since he was the presiding priest over the sacrificial procedures (Lev 8:29; cf. Lev 7:30-31), while Aaron and his sons ate the portions that would have been consumed by the common worshipers in a regular peace offering procedure (Exod 29:31-34; cf. Lev 7:15-18). For a general introduction to the peace offering see the note on Lev 3:1.



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