Notes & Commentary:
Ver. 2. Despising:
interpretatively; not formally, as Numbers xv. (Estius) --- The Lord, who knows the truth, and is an avenger of all
injustice, even the most secret. (Haydock) --- The law inflicts indeed a smaller punishment, as these offences are supposed
to be secret, and the offender is thus invited to repent, and to repair the injury done. When the crime is public, the law
is more severe. (Calmet) --- Hebrew, "If a soul transgress and sin against the Lord." Septuagint, "If any one wilfully despise
the commands," &c. (Haydock) --- Trust. Hebrew and Septuagint, "or a sum given for traffic for their common benefit."
--- Oppression, by any means whatsoever detaining the wages of the labourer, &c.
Ver. 3. Lost.
We acquire no title to the thing by finding it. The Roman law, as well as divines, condemn those who appropriate the thing
found to their own use, as guilty of theft, whether they knew to whom it belonged or not; and Plato greatly commends the law
of Solon, "Take not what thou didst not put down," a rule which the Dyrbeans and the people of Biblos rigorously observed.
We may, however, take up what is lost, (Calmet) and endeavour to find the owner, who must indemnify us for our trouble; and,
if we never find him, we are directed to give the price to the poor, for the owner's welfare. (Haydock)
Convicted, by his own conscience, and by the judgment of the priest to whom he has confessed his sin. The Hebrew expresses
the different sorts of sins specified above, which the Vulgate denotes by the word offence.
Ver. 5. Wronged.
Hebrew and Chaldean add, "in the day of his sin-offering;" and the Septuagint, "in which he is convicted." No unnecessary
delay in making restitution can be allowed to the sincere penitent, who wishes to make his peace with God.
Ver. 6. The.
Hebrew, "thy estimation for a sin-offering." (Haydock) --- Wilful sins require a more noble victim than those of ignorance,
which were expiated by the sacrifice of a goat. (Menochius)
Ver. 9. Holocaust.
The regulations respecting it, as they regard the priests, are here given, as chap. i., directions were given to those who
presented the victims. --- Morning. All the parts of the victim were not laid on at the same time. The like was observed
during the day also, when no other sacrifices were to be offered on this altar. --- Of the same, not strange, unhallowed
fire, but such as was kept continually burning on the altar of holocausts, as the Hebrew intimates; "the fire of the altar
shall be burning in it." During the marches in the desert, it is not written how this fire was preserved. The Persians believed
that their eternal fire came down from heaven, and the vestal virgins kept their sacred fire at Rome, with superstitious care.
Theophrastus (ap. Eusebius, pręp. i. 9,) mentions the keeping of fire in the temples, as one of the most ancient rites of
Ver. 11. Others;
such as were worn on common occasions, out of the tabernacle. --- And shall, &c. Hebrew has only, "unto a clean
place," as the other versions and some Latin copies read. The meaning of the addition is, that all the bones, &c., must
be perfectly reduced to dust, before they be carried out of the camp. (Calmet)
Ver. 12. Fat,
along with the whole burnt-offering. (Menochius)
Ver. 13. The
perpetual fire. This fire came from heaven, (chap. ix. 24,) and was always kept burning on the altar: as a figure of the
heavenly fire of divine love, which ought to be always burning in the heart of a Christian. (Challoner) --- It must be fed
by assiduous meditation on the Scripture and holy things. (Du Hamel)
Ver. 14. Sacrifice
of flour, moneé, chap. ii. 1. --- And libations. These words are added, to shew that
oil and wine accompanied this sacrifice.
Ver. 16. He.
Only the priests, who were actually officiating, could partake of it. (Calmet)
Ver. 18. Lord.
As long as this law shall be in force. (Menochius) --- Sanctified. Theodoret (q. 5,) seems to assert, that all such
were obliged to serve the altar in some function or other. If any unclean person touched the victims wilfully, he was slain;
if, by mistake, the blood sprinkled a garment, it was to be washed, ver. 27.
Ver. 20. Evening.
And this shall continue as long as they are high priests, from the day of their consecration, (Josephus, [Antiquities?] iii.
20.; Cajetan,) a perpetual sacrifice. (Calmet)
Ver. 22. Rightfully.
According to the law, which decides that, if the first-born be deformed, the next shall succeed, chap. xxi. 18. Hebrew, "the
priest, of his sons, who is anointed in his stead, shall offer it." No mention is made of its being hot, either here
or in the Septuagint. (Haydock)
Ver. 23. Sacrifice
of flour, not of animals, Exodus xxix. 28.
Ver. 25. Sin
of individuals. The victims offered by the priest, or by the whole people, were to be burnt, chap. iv. 7.
Ver. 26. Tabernacle.
No part shall be given to those who are not of the sacerdotal race. (Calmet)
Ver. 27. Place,
in the court, that so it may be worn again. (Menochius)
Ver. 28. Sodden,
or boiled. Such vessels, of private people, as had been used to boil part of the victim, (1 Kings ii. 13,) were either to
be abandoned to the service of the altar, or broken, &c. (Calmet) --- Earthen vessels might imbibe some part of
the consecrated juice. (Menochius)
Ver. 30. Fire.
As they are the victims for the sins of the priest and of the people, chap. iv. 6, 18. (Menochius)
Bible Text & Cross-references:
Oblations for sins of injustice: ordinances concerning the
holocausts and the perpetual fire: the sacrifices of the priests, and the sin-offerings.
1 The Lord spoke to Moses,* saying:
2 Whosoever shall sin, and despising the Lord, shall deny to his neighbour
the thing delivered to his keeping, which was committed to his trust; or shall by force extort any thing, or commit oppression,
3 Or shall find a thing lost, and denying it, shall also swear falsely,
or shall do any other of the many things, wherein men are wont to sin,
4 Being convicted of the offence, he shall restore
5 All that he would have gotten by fraud, in the principal, *and the fifth
part besides to the owner, whom he wronged.
6 Moreover for his sin he shall offer a ram without blemish out of the
flock, and shall give it to the priest, according to the estimation and measure of the offence:
7 And he shall pray for him before the Lord, and he shall have forgiveness
for every thing in doing of which he hath sinned.
8 And the Lord spoke to Moses, saying:
9 Command Aaron and his sons: This is the law of a holocaust: It shall
be burnt upon the altar, all night until morning: the fire shall be of the same altar.
10 The priest shall be vested with the tunic and the linen breeches; and
he shall take up the ashes of that which the devouring fire hath burnt, and putting them beside the altar,
11 Shall put off his former vestments, and being clothed with others, shall
carry them forth without the camp, and shall cause them to be consumed to dust in a very clean place.
12 And the fire on the altar shall always burn, and the priest shall feed
it, putting wood on it every day in the morning, and laying on the holocaust, shall burn thereupon the fat of the peace-offerings.
13 This is the perpetual fire which shall never go out on the altar.
14 This is the law of the sacrifice and libations, which the children of
Aaron shall offer before the Lord, and before the altar.
15 The priest shall take a handful of the flour that is tempered with oil,
and all the frankincense that is put upon the flour: and he shall burn it on the altar for a memorial of most sweet odour
to the Lord:
16 And the part of the flour that is left, Aaron and his sons shall eat,
without leaven: and he shall eat it in the holy place of the court of the tabernacle.
17 And therefore it shall not be leavened, because part thereof is offered
for the burnt-sacrifice of the Lord. It shall be most holy, as that which is offered for sin and for trespass.
18 The males only of the race of Aaron shall eat it. It shall be an ordinance
everlasting in your generations concerning the sacrifices of the Lord: every one that toucheth them shall be sanctified.
19 And the Lord spoke to Moses, saying:
20 This is the oblation of Aaron, and of his sons, which they must offer
to the Lord, in the day of their anointing: They shall offer the tenth part of an ephi of flour for a perpetual sacrifice,
half of it in the morning, and half of it in the evening:
21 It shall be tempered with oil, and shall be fried in a frying-pan.
22 And the priest that rightfully succeedeth his father, shall offer it
hot, for a most sweet odour to the Lord, and it shall be wholly burnt on the altar.
23 For every sacrifice of the priest shall be consumed with fire, neither
shall any man eat thereof.
24 And the Lord spoke to Moses, saying:
25 Say to Aaron and his sons: This is the law of the victim for sin: In
the place where the holocaust is offered, it shall be immolated before the Lord. It is holy of holies.
26 The priest that offereth it, shall eat it in a holy place, in the court
of the tabernacle.
27 Whatsoever shall touch the flesh thereof, shall be sanctified. If a
garment be sprinkled with the blood thereof, it shall be washed in a holy place.
28 And the earthen vessel, wherein it was sodden, shall be broken; but
if the vessel be of brass, it shall be scoured, and washed with water.
29 Every male of the priestly race shall eat of the flesh thereof, because
it is holy of holies.
30 For the victim that is slain for sin, *the blood of which is carried
into the tabernacle of the testimony to make atonement in the sanctuary, shall not be eaten, but shall be burnt with fire.
1: Year of the World 2514.
5: Numbers v. 7.
30: Leviticus iv. 5.; Hebrews xiii. 11.