Study Guide

Leviticus Chapter 5

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Chapter 5

What Not to Swear

  • Chapter 5 opens with a few more examples of common mistakes, after which it shifts to the book's fifth type of offering: the reparation offering.
  • The chapter continues with a few more examples involving the delay of a d'oh. Touch an unclean person or animal carcass and don't realize it until a while afterward? It's time for a sin offering.
  • Don't have no idea of what being unclean means? Just wait. (This is what's known in the lit biz as foreshadowing.)
  • If an Israelite swears that he'll do something but ends up getting delayed, sin offering time.
  • Failing to testify in a legal matter is also something that Leviticus doesn't like, although it leaves the matter in the hands of God, not the district attorney.
  • The sin offerings here are stripped down versions of the rituals in chapter four. This section is a little less blood and a little more explanation.
  • P.S. In verse 14, we get "the Lord spoke unto to Moses, saying" again. To make reading about sacrifices more fun, every time this phrase pops up, eat an M&M. Peanut butter, preferably.

Guilty, Guilty, Guilty!

  • Hey, Leviticus moves to a new topic: the guilt or reparation offering.
  • This could also be called the payback offering, because in addition to sacrificing an animal, the rules involve compensating any harm done.
  • The first example involves corrupting something that's holy. An Israelite kid is playing baseball near the Tabernacle and accidentally hits a ball through the window? That calls for not only an offering of a ram, but enough shekels to pay for the damage along with a 20% penalty.
  • Okay, so the ancient Israelites don't play baseball and the Tabernacle doesn't have glass windows. Sheesh. Vampires don't play ball in forests either and Hollywood made a whole movie about it.
  • Robbery and unscrupulous financial dealings also require a reparation sacrifice and shekel payback, especially when these financial dealings involve sworn false statements.
  • And don't forget the rams without blemish.
  • The payback rule for business sins is once again full payment of the amount lost along with an additional 20% penalty.

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