Thursday, 17 May 2018

Zevachim 34: Kashrut and Sacrifices

Some brief notes about today's daf:

  • animal sacrifices are specific:
    • an ordinary sin offering is brought only from a female sheep or goat
  • what if a different animal is brought as the offering?
  • what if a non-kosher animal is presented as the offering?
  • how severe is the penalty for bringing the wrong animal as an offering?
  • no substitutions are permitted and yet the punishment for bringing the wrong animal may not be karet
  • Reish Lakish says that one who brings a non-kosher animal to the Temple altar is liable to receive malkot, lashes
  • Rabbi Yochanan argues that there is no punishment for this action
  • Rabbi Yochanan uses the proof text (Vayikra 1:2) to support the idea that this could be a mitzvah aseh, a positive commandment, which is why there is no formal punishment (there is no formal punishment associated with neglecting to fulfill a positive commandment)
  • Reish Lakish says that this is a lav haba michlal ase, a negative commandment derived from a positive commandment
  • Reish Lakish considers this to be a negative commandment
  • Rabbi Ya'akov says that both Reish Lakish and Rabbi Yochanan agree that a negative commandment derived from a positive commandment is actually a positive commandment, and so there is no punishment for bring a non-kosher animal onto the Temple altar
  • Instead Rabbi Yaakov states the their argument is about someone who brought a chayyah, a kosher wild animal (ex. a deer, an antelope) onto the altar
    • Rabbi Yochanan says that the Torah limits sacrifices to bechemot, domesticated animals; a wild animal goes against the mitzvah to bring an animal offering
    • Reish Lakish says that thought the mitzvah teaches us to bring a bechema but a kosher wild animal is acceptable 
    • Steinsaltz teaches that Rashi notes that a non-kosher animal are not permitted based on a proof that teaches that sacrifices must be animals that are kosher