Leviticus 5

Chapter 5

Other Ways to Atone. 1 “If anyone sins in that he heard a call to testify and he is a witness, having seen or heard of the matter, and he does not make it known, then he shall bear his guilt. 2 Or if anyone touches any unclean thing, whether it be the carcass of an unclean animal or the carcass of unclean cattle or the carcass of any unclean creeping thing, even if he did not know it, he shall be unclean and be held guilty. 3 Or if he touches human uncleanness,[a] of whatever type of uncleanness one might touch and become unclean, and he did not know it, when he comes to know of it he shall be guilty. 4 Or if someone rashly lets an oath slip from his lips, to do evil or to do good, in anything by which a person who swears a rash oath, and he does not realize it, when he comes to know it, he shall be guilty for any one of these thing s. 5 Therefore, when someone is guilty of any one of these things, he shall confess the sin he has committed. 6 He shall bring a guilt offering to the Lord for the sin that he has committed: a female goat or sheep from the flock as a sin offering. The priest shall make atonement for him and for his sin.

7 “If someone cannot afford a lamb, then he shall bring as his guilt offering to the Lord two turtledoves or two pigeons for the sin that he has committed. One will be for a sin offering and the other will be a burnt offering. 8 He shall bring them to the priest who shall offer the first for the sin offering. He will wring its head from its neck, but he will not rip it apart. 9 He shall sprinkle some of the blood of the sin offering on the sides of the altar, while the rest he shall pour out at the base of the altar. This is a sin offering. 10 The other bird will be offered as a burnt offering, following the normal procedure. Thus the priest shall make atonement for him, for the sin he has committed, and he shall be forgiven.

11 “But if he cannot afford two turtledoves or two young pigeons, let him bring a tenth of an ephah[b] of fine flour for his sin offering, as the offering for the sin he has committed. He shall not put any oil or incense upon it, for it is a sin offering. 12 He shall bring the flour to the priest who will take a handful of it as a memorial portion, burning it upon the altar, on the burnt offerings to the Lord. It is a sin offering. 13 Thus the priest shall make atonement for the sin he has committed in any one of these things and he shall be forgiven. The rest of the offering will be for the priest, as with the cereal offering.”

14 Guilt Offerings.[c] And the Lord said to Moses, 15 “If anyone commits a trespass against God and unknowingly sins against any of the holy things of the Lord, then he shall bring his guilt offering to the Lord. He shall bring a ram from the flock, without defect, for a guilt offering. It is to be worth a certain number of shekels of silver according to the measure of the shekel of the sanctuary. 16 He shall make amends for having sinned against the holy thing, and he shall add a fifth to its value and give it to the priest. The priest shall make atonement for him with the ram of the guilt offering, and he will be forgiven. 17 When someone sins and does any of the things that the Lord has forbidden, even if he does not realize he did it, he has still committed an offense and must bear his guilt. 18 He shall bring a ram without defect from the flock that is the value of the price of a guilt offering. The priest shall make atonement for the sin which he unknowingly committed and he shall be forgiven. 19 It is a guilt offering, for he was certainly guilty before the Lord.”

Footnotes

  1. Leviticus 5:3 Human uncleanness: a large part of Israelite ritual is based on the notions of pure and impure that affected the fitness of the person to enter the sanctuary for worship.
    They are cultic rather than ethical determinations. In the New Testament, Jesus’ interpretation of cleanliness went beyond the rigidity imposed by the Pharisees on exterior performance to address the person’s interior disposition.
  2. Leviticus 5:11 An ephah is a dry measure equal to approximately half a bushel.
  3. Leviticus 5:14 This section along with the priestly regulations detailed in chapter 7 concern the guilt offering. Although sometimes used interchangeably with “sin offering,” guilt offerings applied in those instances where restitution was required to be made.

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