6:13 “‘Now this is the law of the Nazirite: When the days of his separation are fulfilled, he must be brought 1 to the entrance of the tent of meeting, 6:14 and he must present his offering 2 to the Lord: one male lamb in its first year without blemish for a burnt offering, one ewe lamb in its first year without blemish for a purification offering, one ram without blemish for a peace offering, 3 6:15 and a basket of bread made without yeast, cakes of fine flour mixed with olive oil, wafers made without yeast and smeared with olive oil, and their 4 grain offering and their drink offerings. 5
6:16 “‘Then the priest must present all these 6 before the Lord and offer 7 his purification offering and his burnt offering. 6:17 Then he must offer the ram as a peace offering 8 to the Lord, with the basket of bread made without yeast; the priest must also offer his grain offering and his drink offering.
6:18 “‘Then the Nazirite must shave his consecrated head 9 at the entrance to the tent of meeting and must take the hair from his consecrated head and put it on the fire 10 where the peace offering is burning. 11 6:19 And the priest must take the boiled shoulder of the ram, one cake made without yeast from the basket, and one wafer made without yeast, and put them on the hands of the Nazirite after he has shaved his consecrated head; 12 6:20 then the priest must wave them as a wave offering 13 before the Lord; it is a holy portion for the priest, together with the breast of the wave offering and the thigh of the raised offering. 14 After this the Nazirite may drink 15 wine.’
6:21 “This is the law 16 of the Nazirite who vows to the Lord his offering according to his separation, as well as whatever else he can provide. 17 Thus he must fulfill 18 his vow that he makes, according to the law of his separation.”
1 tn The Hebrew text has “he/one shall bring him”; since there is no expressed subject, this verb should be taken in the passive sense – “he shall be brought.” Since the context suggests an obligatory nuance, the translation “he must be brought” has been used. Some scholars solve the problem by emending the Hebrew text here, but there is no manuscript evidence to support the emendation.
2 tn Heb “he shall offer his offering” – the object is a cognate accusative.
3 sn The peace offering שְׁלָמִים (shÿlamim) is instructed in Lev 3 and 7. The form is always in the plural. It was a sacrifice that celebrated the fact that the worshiper was at peace with God, and was not offered in order to make peace with God. The peace offering was essentially a communal meal in the presence of God. Some have tried to equate this offering with similar sounding names in Akkadian and Ugaritic (see B. A. Levine, In the Presence of the
5 sn The offerings for the termination of the Nazirite vow would not have been inexpensive. This indicates that the person making the short term vow may have had income, or have come from a wealthier section of society. Short term vows had to be considered carefully as this ruling required a good amount of food to be brought.
6 tn “all these” is supplied as the object.
7 tn Heb “make.”
8 tn The “peace offering” is usually written as “a sacrifice of peace” (זֶבַח שְׁלָמִים, zevakh shÿlamim). The word “sacrifice” is related to the word “to slaughter,” and so indicates that this is a bloody offering in celebration of peace with God.
9 tn Some versions simply interpret this to say that he shaves his hair, for it is the hair that is the sign of the consecration to God. But the text says he shaves his consecrated head. The whole person is obviously consecrated to God – not just the head. But the symbolic act of cutting the hair shows that the vow has been completed (see Acts 21:23-24). The understanding of the importance of the hair in the ancient world has been the subject of considerable study over the years (see R. de Vaux, Ancient Israel, 436; and J. A. Thompson, “Numbers,” New Bible Commentary: Revised, 177).
10 sn Some commentators see this burning of the hair as an offering (McNeile, Numbers, 35; G. B. Gray, Numbers [ICC], 68). But others probably with more foundation see it as destroying something that has served a purpose, something that if left alone might be venerated (see R. de Vaux, Israel, 436).
11 tn Heb “which is under the peace offering.” The verse does not mean that the hair had to be put under that sacrifice and directly on the fire.
12 tn The line does not include the word “head”; it literally has “after the consecrating of himself his consecrated [head].” The infinitive construct is here functioning in the temporal clause with the suffix as the subject and the object following.
13 sn The ritual of lifting the hands filled with the offering and waving them in the presence of the
14 sn The “wave offering” may be interpreted as a “special gift” to be transferred to the
15 tn The imperfect tense here would then have the nuance of permission. It is not an instruction at this point; rather, the prohibition has been lifted and the person is free to drink wine.
16 tn Actually, “law” here means a whole set of laws, the basic rulings on this topic.
17 tn Heb “whatever else his hand is able to provide.” The imperfect tense has the nuance of potential imperfect – “whatever he can provide.”
18 tn Heb “according to the vow that he vows, so he must do.”