Vayikra – Rishon

All Burned Up

By Rabbi Jack Abramowitz

G-d called to Moshe and gave him instructions about sacrifices. Sacrifices could only be brought from cattle, sheep and goats.

A korban olah (burnt offering) taken from cattle must be a male without any defects. It must be brought voluntarily and the owner would place his hands on the animal’s head before handing it over to the kohanim. The animal would be slaughtered and its blood sprinkled on the altar. Then, the animal would be skinned and cut up. The kohanim would arrange the pieces on the altar. (The intestines and legs would have to be washed before placing them on the altar.) A korban olah is burned in entirety; no part of it is eaten.

If one wished to bring a korban olah of a sheep or a goat, it must likewise be a defect-free male and the process is essentially similar.

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