Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Sacrificial Offerings….What?

           This week’s parsha gives an in depth discussion on the different types of sacrifices Bnai Israel is commanded to make. However, Hashem did not command Bnai Israel to make sacrifices on His behalf, but rather, they were commanded for us to make on behalf of our sake. The sacrificial laws are considered as chokim- laws for which we do not have human comprehension for; however, Ramban explains that when a sinner, who is making a sacrifice for an atonement, by witnessing an animal being slaughtered, butchered, and burned, it would give him the higher consciousness that what was done to the animal could have been done to him for violating Hashem’s commandments.
            Moreover, by examining the animal’s fate, it arouses man to question, what is the difference between man and animal? Indeed both have similar physical functions and both face mortality. What is it that elevates the human being above the animal kingdom? The answer is the Divine soul instilled within each of us from Hashem.  When seeing an living animal being sacrificed, the Jew can question, ‘how is it possible that I could be so foolish to transgress Hashem and give into my lower animal nature?’ Rather, the korbanot-sacrifices- were created to stimulate the sinner to find it within himself to heartfelt teshuva- repentance.

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