Leviticus 6
Matthew Poole's Commentary
And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,
Trespass-offerings for sins of deceit, or violence and perjury; restoration must be made, and a ram offered, Leviticus 6:1-7. The law of the burntoffering further declared; the fire to be ever burning upon the altar, Leviticus 6:8-13. Of meat-offerings for a memorial unto the Lord, and every one that toucheth them is holy, Leviticus 6:14-18. Meat offerings for the consecration of Aaron and his sons, Leviticus 6:19-23. Of the sin offering, Leviticus 6:24-30.

No text from Poole on this verse.

If a soul sin, and commit a trespass against the LORD, and lie unto his neighbour in that which was delivered him to keep, or in fellowship, or in a thing taken away by violence, or hath deceived his neighbour;
This sin, though directly committed against man only, is here emphatically said to be done against the Lord; not only in general, for so every sin against man is also against the Lord, whose image in man is thereby injured, and whose law, which obligeth us to love, and fidelity, and justice to other men, is thereby violated; but in a more special sense, because this was a violation of human society, whereof God is the author, and president, and defender; see Numbers 5:6; and because it was a secret sin, of which God alone was the witness and judge; see Acts 5:4; and because God’s name was abused in it by perjury, Leviticus 6:3.

To keep, to wit, in trust. Or in fellowship, Heb. or in putting of the hand. Which may be either,

1. Another expression of the same thing immediately going before, which is very frequent in Scripture; and so the sense is, when one man puts any thing into another man’s hand to keep for him; and when he requires it, to restore it to him. Or,

2. A distinct branch, which seems more probable, and so it belongs to commerce or fellowship in trading, which is very usual, when one man puts any thing into another’s hand, not to keep it, as in the foregoing word or member, but to use and improve it for the common benefit of them both, in which cases of partnership it is easy for one to deceive the other, and therefore provision is here made against it. And this is called a putting of the hand, because such agreements and associations used to be confirmed by giving or joining their hands together, Jeremiah 1:15 Galatians 2:9. Compare Exodus 23:1.

Taken away by violence, to wit, secretly; for he seems to speak here of such sins as could not be proved by witness.

Or hath deceived his neighbour, got any thing from him by calumny, or fraud, or circumvention; for so the word signifies.

Or have found that which was lost, and lieth concerning it, and sweareth falsely; in any of all these that a man doeth, sinning therein:
Sweareth falsely; his oath being required, seeing there was no other way of discovery left.

Then it shall be, because he hath sinned, and is guilty, that he shall restore that which he took violently away, or the thing which he hath deceitfully gotten, or that which was delivered him to keep, or the lost thing which he found,
Because he hath sinned, and is guilty. This guilt of his being manifested, either by his refusing to swear when called to it, as in some of the cases alleged; or by his voluntary confession upon remorse, whereby he reapeth this benefit, that he only restores the principal with the addition of a fifth part; whereas if he were convicted of his fault, he was to pay double, Exodus 22:9.

Or all that about which he hath sworn falsely; he shall even restore it in the principal, and shall add the fifth part more thereto, and give it unto him to whom it appertaineth, in the day of his trespass offering.
It must not be delayed, but restitution to man must accompany repentance towards God. Compare Matthew 5:23.

And he shall bring his trespass offering unto the LORD, a ram without blemish out of the flock, with thy estimation, for a trespass offering, unto the priest:
No text from Poole on this verse.

And the priest shall make an atonement for him before the LORD: and it shall be forgiven him for any thing of all that he hath done in trespassing therein.
No text from Poole on this verse.

And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,
No text from Poole on this verse.

Command Aaron and his sons, saying, This is the law of the burnt offering: It is the burnt offering, because of the burning upon the altar all night unto the morning, and the fire of the altar shall be burning in it.
Hitherto he hath prescribed the sacrifices themselves, now he comes to the manner of them. The law of the burnt-offering, to wit, of the daily one, of which Exodus 29:38 Numbers 28:3, as the following words show.

Because of the burning upon the altar all night unto the morning: the meaning is, the evening burnt-offering was to be so managed and laid on piece after piece, that the fire might be constantly maintained by it. It is to be understood, that the morning burnt-offerings were to be kept burning all the day from morning to night also; but he mentions not that because there was so great a number and such a constant succession of sacrifices in the day-time, that there needed no law for feeding and keeping in the fire then; the only danger was for the night, when other sacrifices were not offered, but only the evening burnt-offering, which if it had been consumed quickly, as the morning burnt-offering was, there had been danger of the going out of that fire, which they were commanded diligently and constantly to keep in and maintain here below, Leviticus 6:13.

And the priest shall put on his linen garment, and his linen breeches shall he put upon his flesh, and take up the ashes which the fire hath consumed with the burnt offering on the altar, and he shall put them beside the altar.
His linen garment, i.e. his linen coat, of which see Exodus 28:39,40. The ashes are said to be consumed improperly, When the wood is consumed into ashes; as meal is said to be ground, Isaiah 47:2, when the corn is ground into meal; and the naked to be stripped of their clothing, Job 22:6, when by being stripped they are made naked.

And he shall put off his garments, and put on other garments, and carry forth the ashes without the camp unto a clean place.
Put on other garments, because this was no sacred, but a common work.

Unto a clean place, where no dung or filth was laid. See Leviticus 4:12, and compare Leviticus 14:40,41.

And the fire upon the altar shall be burning in it; it shall not be put out: and the priest shall burn wood on it every morning, and lay the burnt offering in order upon it; and he shall burn thereon the fat of the peace offerings.
The fire coming down from heaven, Leviticus 9:24, was to be perpetually preserved, and not suffered to go out, partly that there might be no occasion nor temptation to offer strange fire, nor to mingle their inventions with God’s appointments; and partly to teach them whence they were to expect the acceptance of all their sacrifices, even from the Divine mercy and grace, signified by the fire which came down from heaven, which was a usual token of God’s favourable acceptance. See Poole "Genesis 4:4", See Poole Genesis 4:5.

Every morning; though the evening also be doubtless intended, as it appears from Leviticus 6:9, and from the nature of the thing; yet the morning is only mentioned, because then the altar was cleansed, and the ashes taken away, and a new fire made.

He shall burn thereon, i.e. upon the burnt-offering, which thereby would be sooner consumed, that so way might be made for other sacrifices, which were many.

The fire shall ever be burning upon the altar; it shall never go out.
No text from Poole on this verse.

And this is the law of the meat offering: the sons of Aaron shall offer it before the LORD, before the altar.
The law of the meat-offering, to wit, of that which was offered alone, and that by any of the people, not by the priest, for then it must have been all burnt. This law, delivered Le 2, is here repeated for the sake of some additions here made to it; as it is a common practice of law-makers, when they make additional laws, to recite such laws to which such additions belong.

And he shall take of it his handful, of the flour of the meat offering, and of the oil thereof, and all the frankincense which is upon the meat offering, and shall burn it upon the altar for a sweet savour, even the memorial of it, unto the LORD.
No text from Poole on this verse.

And the remainder thereof shall Aaron and his sons eat: with unleavened bread shall it be eaten in the holy place; in the court of the tabernacle of the congregation they shall eat it.
The males only might eat these, because they were most holy things; whereas the daughters of Aaron might eat other holy things, Numbers 18:11.

With unleavened bread; or rather, unleavened, for with is not in the Hebrew, and it disturbs the sense; for since the meat-offering itself was fine flour, Leviticus 2:1, it is not likely that they eat it with unleavened bread.

In the court of the tabernacle of the congregation; in some special room appointed for that purpose. See Leviticus 8:31 1 Samuel 3:3 Ezekiel 42:13 46:19,24. The reason why this was to be eaten only by holy persons, and that in a holy place, is given Leviticus 6:17, because it is most holy, and therefore to be treated with greater reverence.

It shall not be baken with leaven. I have given it unto them for their portion of my offerings made by fire; it is most holy, as is the sin offering, and as the trespass offering.
It shall not be baken with leaven; that part which remains to the priest; for the part here offered to God seems not to have been baked at all.

All the males among the children of Aaron shall eat of it. It shall be a statute for ever in your generations concerning the offerings of the LORD made by fire: every one that toucheth them shall be holy.
It may be understood either,

1. Of persons, that none should touch or eat them but consecrated persons, to wit, priests. Or this may be an additional caution, that they who eat them should be not only priests, or their male children, but also

holy, i.e. having no uncleanness upon them, for in that case even the priests themselves might not touch them. Or rather,

2. Of things, as may be gathered by comparing this with Leviticus 6:27,28. Whatsoever toucheth them, as suppose the dish that receives them, the knife, or spoon, &c. which is used about them, those shall be taken for holy, and not employed for common uses. See Exodus 29:37.

And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,
No text from Poole on this verse.

This is the offering of Aaron and of his sons, which they shall offer unto the LORD in the day when he is anointed; the tenth part of an ephah of fine flour for a meat offering perpetual, half of it in the morning, and half thereof at night.
When he is anointed; when any of them are anointed for high priest; for he only of all the priests was to be anointed in future ages. This law of his consecration was delivered before, Exodus 29:2,24,25, and is here repeated because of some additions made to it. A meat-offering perpetual, to wit, whensoever any of them shall be so anointed. At night, or, in the evening; the one to be annexed to the morning sacrifice, the other to the evening sacrifice, over and besides that meat-offering which every day was to be added to the daily morning and evening sacrifices, Exodus 29:40.

In a pan it shall be made with oil; and when it is baken, thou shalt bring it in: and the baken pieces of the meat offering shalt thou offer for a sweet savour unto the LORD.
When it is baken, or fried, so that it swells and bubbles up.

Thou shalt bring it in, who art so anointed and consecrated, Leviticus 6:22.

And the priest of his sons that is anointed in his stead shall offer it: it is a statute for ever unto the LORD; it shall be wholly burnt.
No text from Poole on this verse.

For every meat offering for the priest shall be wholly burnt: it shall not be eaten.
No part of it shall be eaten by the priest, as it was when the offering was for the people. The reason of the difference is, partly, because when he offered it for the people, he was to have some recompence for his pains, which he could not expect when he offered it for himself; partly, to signify the imperfection of the Levitical priests, who could not bear their own iniquity; for the priest’s eating part of the people’s sacrifices did signify his typical bearing of the people’s iniquity, as appears from Leviticus 10:17; and partly, to teach the priests and ministers of God, that it is their duty to serve God with singleness of heart, and to be content with God’s honour, though they have no present advantage by it.

And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,
No text from Poole on this verse.

Speak unto Aaron and to his sons, saying, This is the law of the sin offering: In the place where the burnt offering is killed shall the sin offering be killed before the LORD: it is most holy.
No text from Poole on this verse.

The priest that offereth it for sin shall eat it: in the holy place shall it be eaten, in the court of the tabernacle of the congregation.
For sin; for the sins of the rulers, or of the people, or any of them, but not for the sins of the priests; for then its blood was brought into the tabernacle, and therefore it might not be eaten.

Whatsoever shall touch the flesh thereof shall be holy: and when there is sprinkled of the blood thereof upon any garment, thou shalt wash that whereon it was sprinkled in the holy place.
Whatsoever shall touch the flesh; of which See Poole "Leviticus 6:18".

Upon any garment; upon the priest’s garment; for it was he only that sprinkled it, and in so doing he might easily sprinkle his garments.

Thou shalt wash that whereon it was sprinkled in the holy place; partly out of reverence to the blood of sacrifices, which hereby was kept from a profane or common touch; and partly that such garments might be decent, and fit for sacred administrations.

But the earthen vessel wherein it is sodden shall be broken: and if it be sodden in a brasen pot, it shall be both scoured, and rinsed in water.
The earthen vessel shall be broken, because being full of pores, the liquor in which it was sodden might easily sink into it, whereby it was ceremonially holy, and therefore was broken, lest afterwards it should be abused to profane or common uses.

It shall be both scoured, and not broken, as being of considerable value, which therefore God would not have unnecessarily wasted. And this being of a more solid substance than an earthen vessel, was not so apt to drink in the humour.

All the males among the priests shall eat thereof: it is most holy.
No text from Poole on this verse.

And no sin offering, whereof any of the blood is brought into the tabernacle of the congregation to reconcile withal in the holy place, shall be eaten: it shall be burnt in the fire.
Such were the sacrifices offered for the high priest, or for the whole assembly, either severally, Leviticus 4:7,18, or jointly for both, in the yearly atonement, Leviticus 16:27,33.

Matthew Poole's Commentary

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