So what then is the relationship between obedience and commandedness [t’zivui] and how does it affect our relationship to sacral duties [mitzvot]?
From hearing the calling to obeying the command [tzav], Moses, Aaron, and Aaron’s sons all receive the divine command regarding their duties as priests [kohanim] to make offerings [qorbanot] in the Sanctuary. The fire on the altar must be kept burning at all times, so as to completely consume: the ascent offering [‘olah]; veins of fat from the peace offering [shelamim]; sin offering [hatat]; guilt offering [asham]; and the handful taken from the meal offering [minha]. The priests are permitted to eat the meat of the sin and guilt offerings, as well as the remainder of the meal offering. The peace offering is offered by the one who brought it, with sections apportioned to the priest. Consumption of the holy meat offerings are to be eaten by a person for whom it is ritually appropriate, in a designated place and time. Initiation into the priesthood for Aaron and his sons takes place over the seven day retreat in the sanctuary compound.
What makes this profound vision of the complex interdependency of the created order real is the degree to which human beings responsibly participate in that order.
– Rabbi Aubrey Glazer
Artwork note: This week’s artwork is inspired by the following instruction: “An earthenware vessel in which [the sin offering] is cooked shall be broken…” (Leviticus 6:21) Illustration by Christopher Orev Reiger.