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Leviticus 22:18-23

Context
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 

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).



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