Fire, Offerings and Passover

1000 Verses - a project of Judaism Resources

Fire, Offerings and Passover

There is no Hebrew counter-part for the English word: “sacrifice”. The terms that the Bible uses to describe the sacrifices in the Temple are: “olah” – a word that represents the burning of the offering with an emphasis of the smoke that rises from the fire; “zevach” – a word that denotes the slaughtering of the offering and its subsequent consumption by the worshipers; “mincha” – a gift; and the word: “korban” – which also means “gift”, with the additional connotation of closeness. The underlying concept of the Biblical offering seems to be the offering of something to God.

It is actually impossible to “give” anything to God. In the Psalms (50:12) God declares: “If I were hungry I would not tell you for mine is the world and all that fills it”. When preparing the materials for the construction of the Temple, David acknowledged: “O…

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