Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary, 1859 edition.

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NUMBERS - Chapter 28

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Numbers xxviii.

Notes & Commentary:

Ver. 2. Seasons. These precepts had often been repeated already: but perhaps they had not been exactly observed in the desert, so that Moses inculcates them once more, as if to remind the people that they will now have no excuse, if they neglect these sacrifices in the promised land. (Calmet) --- These frequent repetitions may also remind us, with what attention we ought to worship God. (Du Hamel)

Ver. 3. Lambs. Kids would not suffice. See Exodus xxix. 38. The lambs must not be above a year old. But it is not clear whether they could be offered eight days after their birth, as on other occasions, Exodus xxiii. 19. (Calmet)

Ver. 6. Sinai. Hence it seems to have been discontinued for 38 years. (Calmet) (Leviticus ix. 17.) (Menochius)

Ver. 7. In the. Hebrew, "in the holy thou shalt cause the shecar to be poured out unto the Lord, a drink-offering." See chap. iv. 3[vi. 3?], on the meaning of shecar. (Haydock) --- Some believe, that artificial wine of palm-trees, &c., might serve for libations. In this sacrifice, the priests furnished the liquor; so that all was to be poured out on the altar of holocausts, which stood in the court. (Calmet)

Ver. 10. Which, &c. Hebrew, "the burnt-offering of every sabbath, besides the perpetual holocaust and its libations," which were due for every day. (Haydock) --- On the sabbath, two more were to be offered of the same age. Jansenius observes, that three of these belonged to the morning service, and one to that of the evening. (Menochius) (Calmet)

Ver. 11. Month. This is not reckoned among the festivals, Leviticus xxiii. The Rabbins look upon it as a day of devotion, particularly for women. (Buxtorf. Syn. xvii.) Spencer (Rit. iii. 1,) maintains, that the Hebrews began their month when the moon first appeared, and that they imitated the pagans in keeping that day holy. But his proofs on both heads are very unsatisfactory. The Hebrews followed the solar year for many ages after Moses, though they might have adopted the lunar towards the close of the republic; and the pagans themselves ridiculed those as vile imitators of the Jews, who kept the new moons as a festival. (Hor.[Horace,?] Sat. i. 9.) Sabbata Vin tu Curtis Judæis oppedere. --- The Greeks, Romans, Egyptians, Arabs, and Turks, have given in to various superstitious practices in honour of the moon. See Macrob. Sat. i. 15, &c. (Calmet) --- The devil is commonly the ape of God, and teaches his votaries to adopt the ceremonies of the true religion, either to elude them more easily, or to bring those practices into discredit. Thus Middleton has endeavoured to shew the conformity of Pagan and Papal Rome, as if the ceremonies of the Catholic religion were to be rejected, because some of them have been in use among the heathens. By the same argument, he may ridicule the revelation of God himself, on this subject, and represent vestments, holy water, &c., as superstitious. He may pull down altars, condemn all forms of prayer, abolish all worship, both of soul and body. For such things have all been prostituted to idols! But those who are not totally infatuated by prejudice, will deplore the abuse of these things, and will not refrain from adoring the true God according to his will, with all the faculties both of their soul and body, on account of the devil and his false prophets having extorted similar acts of worship from their followers. It is no wonder that Protestants should ridicule our holy ceremonies, since they scruple not to assign so base an origin to those which God expressly prescribed. (Haydock) --- The sacrifices which were ordered to be offered up on the first day of the month, were probably designed to renew the memory of the world's creation, or rather of the divine Providence, which regulates the seasons. Nothing was sold on this day, Amos viii. 5. But people went to hear the prophets, (4 Kings iv. 23,) and feasted among themselves, 1 Kings xx. 18. It is thought that many rested also from servile work, though this is no where commanded. (Calmet) --- Tirinus agrees with Tostat and Sanctius, in supposing that servile work was prohibited, for which he refers to 1 Kings xx. 19. He also asserts, that the Jews observed the lunar system, and that their months consisted of 29 and 30 days alternately, as 29 days and a half elapse from one moon to another. The sound of trumpets probably announced this solemnity, chap. x. 10., and Leviticus xxiii. (Haydock)

Ver. 13. Tenth. An assaron, gomer, or chomer, which is the tenth part of an epha, as that is the tenth of a core or chomer, which is the largest Hebrew dry measure, containing 32 pecks and one pint English; so that the gomer would be equivalent to five pints. (Haydock) --- This quantity of flour accompanied each holocaust at the beginning of every month. (Calmet)

Ver. 15. Above. This is the import of the Hebrew, &c.: for no libations accompanied the sin-offerings, nor incense. See chap. xv. 3., and Leviticus v. 12. (Menochius)

Ver. 16. Phase, or Passover, the most solemn of all the festivals, when the lamb was to be eaten on the 15th of Nisan, and during the eight days no leavened bread was allowed. The Jews searched all the corners of their houses, lest some might be concealed by mice, and they would not so much as name it. St. Paul exhorts us to do the like, in a spiritual sense, by purifying ourselves from every defilement of sin when we receive the blessed sacrament, and by not even mentioning sins of impurity, 1 Corinthians v. 7., and Ephesians v. 3. (Haydock)

Ver. 23. Offer, as well as that in the evening, which was in less danger of being forgotten.

Ver. 24. Fire. Hebrew, "food of the sacrifice made by fire." --- Rise. Hebrew, "it shall be offered besides the perpetual holocaust, and its libations," morning and evening. All the aforesaid sacrifices and libations were to be repeated on each of the seven days, ver. 19, 22.

Ver. 26. The day of Pentecost, seven weeks after the Passover, was the next in solemnity, to thank God for the wheat harvest, of which the first-fruits were now presented. (Haydock) --- Two loaves, made with leaven, were given to the priests. (Lamy.) See Leviticus xxiii. 17.

Ver. 27. Two calves. Only one is specified in Leviticus, being that designed for the morning; another was immolated at night. (Calmet) --- The same victims are prescribed as [in] ver. 19. (Menochius)


Bible Text & Cross-references:

Sacrifices are appointed as well for every day as for sabbaths, and other festivals.

1 The Lord also said to Moses:

2 Command the children of Israel, and thou shalt say to them: Offer ye my oblation and my bread, and burnt-sacrifice of most sweet odour, in their due seasons.

3 These are the sacrifices which you shall offer: *Two lambs of a year old, without blemish, every day for the perpetual holocaust:

4 One you shall offer in the morning, and the other in the evening:

5 And the tenth part of an epha of flour, which shall be tempered with the purest oil, of the measure of the fourth part of a hin.

6 It is the continual holocaust which you offered in Mount Sinai for a most sweet odour of a sacrifice by fire to the Lord.

7 And for a libation you shall offer of wine the fourth part of a hin for every lamb in the sanctuary of the Lord,

8 And you shall offer the other lamb in like manner in the evening, according to all the rites of the morning sacrifice, and of the libations thereof, an oblation of most sweet odour to the Lord.

9 *And on the sabbath day, you shall offer two lambs of a year old, without blemish, and two tenths of flour tempered with oil in sacrifice, and the libations,

10 Which regularly are poured out every sabbath for the perpetual holocaust.

11 And on the first day of the month you shall offer a holocaust to the Lord, two calves of the herd, one ram, and seven lambs, of a year old, without blemish,

12 And three tenths of flour tempered with oil in sacrifice for every calf: and two tenths of flour tempered with oil for every ram:

13 And the tenth of a tenth of flour tempered with oil in sacrifice for every lamb. It is a holocaust of most sweet odour and an offering by fire to the Lord.

14 And these shall be the libations of wine, that are to be poured out for every victim: Half a hin for every calf, a third for a ram, and a fourth for a lamb. This shall be the holocaust for every month, as they succeed one another in the course of the year.

15 A buck-goat also shall be offered to the Lord for a sin-offering over and above the perpetual holocaust with its libations.

16 *And in the first month, on the fourteenth day of the month, shall be the Phase of the Lord,

17 And on the fifteenth day the solemn feast: seven days shall they eat unleavened bread.

18 And the first day of them shall be venerable and holy: you shall not do any servile work therein.

19 And you shall offer a burnt-sacrifice a holocaust to the Lord, two calves of the herd, one ram, seven lambs of a year old, without blemish:

20 And for the sacrifices of every one three tenths of flour which shall be tempered with oil, to every calf, and two tenths to every ram,

21 And the tenth of a tenth, to every lamb, that is to say, to all the seven lambs:

22 And one buck-goat for sin, to make atonement for you,

23 Besides the morning holocaust which you shall always offer.

24 So shall you do every day of the seven days for the food of the fire, and for a most sweet odour to the Lord, which shall rise from the holocaust, and from the libations of each.

25 The seventh day also shall be most solemn and holy unto you: you shall do no servile work therein.

26 The day also of first-fruits, when after the weeks are accomplished, you shall offer new fruits to the Lord, shall be venerable and holy: you shall do no servile work therein.

27 And you shall offer a holocaust for a most sweet odour to the Lord, two calves of the herd, one ram, and seven lambs of a year old, without blemish:

28 And in the sacrifices of them, three tenths of flour tempered with oil to every calf, two to every ram,

29 The tenth of a tenth to every lamb, which in all are seven lambs: a goat also,

30 Which is slain for expiation: beside the perpetual holocaust and the libations thereof.

31 You shall offer them all without blemish with their libations.

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*

3: Exodus xxix. 38.

9: Matthew xii. 5.

16: Exodus xii. 18.; Leviticus xxiii. 5.