Leviticus 4:3
Verse (Click for Chapter)
New International Version
"'If the anointed priest sins, bringing guilt on the people, he must bring to the LORD a young bull without defect as a sin offering for the sin he has committed.

New Living Translation
"If the high priest sins, bringing guilt upon the entire community, he must give a sin offering for the sin he has committed. He must present to the LORD a young bull with no defects.

English Standard Version
if it is the anointed priest who sins, thus bringing guilt on the people, then he shall offer for the sin that he has committed a bull from the herd without blemish to the LORD for a sin offering.

New American Standard Bible
if the anointed priest sins so as to bring guilt on the people, then let him offer to the LORD a bull without defect as a sin offering for the sin he has committed.

King James Bible
If the priest that is anointed do sin according to the sin of the people; then let him bring for his sin, which he hath sinned, a young bullock without blemish unto the LORD for a sin offering.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
If the anointed priest sins, bringing guilt on the people, he is to present to the LORD a young, unblemished bull as a sin offering for the sin he has committed.

International Standard Version
or if the anointed priest sins, thereby bringing guilt on the people, let him bring a young bull without defect as a sin offering to the LORD for his sin that he had committed.

NET Bible
"'If the high priest sins so that the people are guilty, on account of the sin he has committed he must present a flawless young bull to the LORD for a sin offering.

New Heart English Bible
if the anointed priest sins so as to bring guilt on the people, then let him offer for his sin, which he has sinned, a young bull without blemish to the LORD for a sin offering.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
"If the anointed priest does something wrong and brings guilt on the people, he must bring a bull that has no defects as an offering for sin to the LORD.

JPS Tanakh 1917
if the anointed priest shall sin so as to bring guilt on the people, then let him offer for his sin, which he hath sinned, a young bullock without blemish unto the LORD for a sin-offering.

New American Standard 1977
if the anointed priest sins so as to bring guilt on the people, then let him offer to the LORD a bull without defect as a sin offering for the sin he has committed.

Jubilee Bible 2000
if the priest that is anointed sins according to the guiltiness of the people, he shall offer for his sin, which he has committed, a young bullock without blemish unto the LORD for his sin.

King James 2000 Bible
If the priest that is anointed sins according to the sin of the people; then let him bring for his sin, which he has sinned, a young bullock without blemish unto the LORD for a sin offering.

American King James Version
If the priest that is anointed do sin according to the sin of the people; then let him bring for his sin, which he has sinned, a young bullock without blemish to the LORD for a sin offering.

American Standard Version
if the anointed priest shall sin so as to bring guilt on the people, then let him offer for his sin, which he hath sinned, a young bullock without blemish unto Jehovah for a sin-offering.

Douay-Rheims Bible
If the priest that is anointed shall sin, making the people to offend, he shall offer to the Lord for his sin a calf without blemish.

Darby Bible Translation
if the priest that is anointed sin according to the trespass of the people; then for his sin which he hath sinned shall he present a young bullock without blemish to Jehovah for a sin-offering.

English Revised Version
if the anointed priest shall sin so as to bring guilt on the people; then let him offer for his sin, which he hath sinned, a young bullock without blemish unto the LORD for a sin offering.

Webster's Bible Translation
If the priest that is anointed shall sin according to the sin of the people; then let him bring, for his sin which he hath sinned, a young bullock without blemish to the LORD for a sin-offering.

World English Bible
if the anointed priest sins so as to bring guilt on the people, then let him offer for his sin, which he has sinned, a young bull without blemish to Yahweh for a sin offering.

Young's Literal Translation
'If the priest who is anointed doth sin according to the guilt of the people, then he hath brought near for his sin which he hath sinned a bullock, a son of the herd, a perfect one, to Jehovah, for a sin-offering,
Study Bible
Laws for Sin Offerings
2"Speak to the sons of Israel, saying, 'If a person sins unintentionally in any of the things which the LORD has commanded not to be done, and commits any of them, 3if the anointed priest sins so as to bring guilt on the people, then let him offer to the LORD a bull without defect as a sin offering for the sin he has committed. 4'He shall bring the bull to the doorway of the tent of meeting before the LORD, and he shall lay his hand on the head of the bull and slay the bull before the LORD.…
Cross References
Hebrews 9:12
He did not enter by the blood of goats and calves, but He entered the Most Holy Place once for all by His own blood, thus securing eternal redemption.

Leviticus 4:5
'Then the anointed priest is to take some of the blood of the bull and bring it to the tent of meeting,

Leviticus 4:14
when the sin which they have committed becomes known, then the assembly shall offer a bull of the herd for a sin offering and bring it before the tent of meeting.

Leviticus 4:23
if his sin which he has committed is made known to him, he shall bring for his offering a goat, a male without defect.

Leviticus 4:28
if his sin which he has committed is made known to him, then he shall bring for his offering a goat, a female without defect, for his sin which he has committed.

Leviticus 9:2
and he said to Aaron, "Take for yourself a calf, a bull, for a sin offering and a ram for a burnt offering, both without defect, and offer them before the LORD.

Numbers 16:22
But they fell on their faces and said, "O God, God of the spirits of all flesh, when one man sins, will You be angry with the entire congregation?"

2 Chronicles 29:21
They brought seven bulls, seven rams, seven lambs and seven male goats for a sin offering for the kingdom, the sanctuary, and Judah. And he ordered the priests, the sons of Aaron, to offer them on the altar of the LORD.

Ezekiel 43:19
'You shall give to the Levitical priests who are from the offspring of Zadok, who draw near to Me to minister to Me,' declares the Lord GOD, 'a young bull for a sin offering.
Treasury of Scripture

If the priest that is anointed do sin according to the sin of the people; then let him bring for his sin, which he has sinned, a young bullock without blemish to the LORD for a sin offering.

the priest

Leviticus 8:12 And he poured of the anointing oil on Aaron's head, and anointed …

Leviticus 21:10-12 And he that is the high priest among his brothers, on whose head …

Exodus 29:7,21 Then shall you take the anointing oil, and pour it on his head, and …

a young bullock

Leviticus 4:14 When the sin, which they have sinned against it, is known, then the …

Leviticus 9:2 And he said to Aaron, Take you a young calf for a sin offering, and …

Leviticus 16:6,11 And Aaron shall offer his bullock of the sin offering, which is for …

Ezekiel 43:19 And you shall give to the priests the Levites that be of the seed …

for a sin

Leviticus 5:6 And he shall bring his trespass offering to the LORD for his sin …

Exodus 29:14 But the flesh of the bullock, and his skin, and his dung, shall you …

Exodus 30:10 And Aaron shall make an atonement on the horns of it once in a year …

Numbers 8:8 Then let them take a young bullock with his meat offering, even fine …

Ezra 8:35 Also the children of those that had been carried away, which were …

Romans 8:3 For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, …

2 Corinthians 5:21 For he has made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might …

Hebrews 5:3 And by reason hereof he ought, as for the people, so also for himself, …

Hebrews 7:27,28 Who needs not daily, as those high priests, to offer up sacrifice, …

(3) The priest that is anointed.--To illustrate this law, the conduct of the high priest is adduced as the first instance, to show when and how this exalted functionary is to bring the sin offering in question. By this the Levitical law indicates that even the chief of the priesthood was but a frail being like the rest of the people, and was exposed to the same infirmities as the laity, thus precluding the assumption of spiritual superiority. Hence the remark of the Apostle, "the law made those high priests who had infirmity, and who needed daily to offer up sacrifices, first for their own sins, and then for the people's; but our high priest, Christ Jesus, was holy, harmless, undefiled, and separate from sinners, and made higher than the heavens" (Hebrews 7:27-28). The phrase "the priest that is anointed" for "the high priest" is restricted to this book, where it occurs four times (Leviticus 4:3; Leviticus 4:5; Leviticus 4:16; Leviticus 6:15 in Heb.; 22 in the English). "The great priest," or high priest, is the appellation used in the other portions of the Pentateuch (Leviticus 21:10; Numbers 35:25; Numbers 35:28), and in Joshua (Joshua 20:6); whilst in the later books of the Old Testament this functionary is called chief priest (2Kings 25:18; 2Chronicles 19:11; 2Chronicles 24:11; 2Chronicles 26:20; 2Chronicles 31:10; Ezra 7:5). He is called "the anointed priest," because, like Aaron, he alone was anointed when he succeeded to the high office, whilst the ordinary priests were simply consecrated. Their anointing descended with them to all futurity by virtue of being the descendants of Aaron. (See Leviticus 8:12.)

According to the sin of the people.--That is, he having in ignorance committed the same sin as the common people, to which he is as liable as they. From the phrase "against any commandments of the Lord" in the preceding verse, as well as from Leviticus 10:6; Leviticus 21:10-15, it is evident that the sin of ignorance here alluded to does not refer to the inadvertent neglect of his official duty, which devolves upon the high priest as the spiritual head of the people, but to any offence whatsoever ignorantly committed. According to the marginal reading, to make the people guilty, or more literally, to the guilt of the people, which is equally admissible, the meaning of the passage is, that he by committing a sin causes the people to transgress, inasmuch as his example is followed by them; or that, in virtue of the intimate connection which subsisted between the representative of the nation and the people, the sin of the one was the sin of the other. (Comp. Leviticus 10:6; 1Chronicles 21:3.)

A young bullock.--Literally, a steer, the son of a bull. The sacrificial rules which obtained at the time of Christ minutely defined the respective ages of the bullock: the steer, the son of a bull, and the calf. The bullock or ox which was brought as a sacrifice had to be three years old: "the steer the son of a bull" rendered in the passage before us, and in the Authorised Version generally, by "a young bullock" (Exodus 29:1; Leviticus 4:14; Leviticus 16:3; Leviticus 23:8, &c.), had to be two years old; whilst the calf had to be of the first year.

Verses 3-12. - The case of the high priest. He is designated the priest that is anointed, in respect to which title, see notes on chapter 8. In case he sins in his representative character, his sin is such as to bring guilt on the people (this is the meaning of the words translated according to the sin of the people), and a special sin offering must therefore be made. He is to take of the blood of the animal sacrificed, and bring it to the tabernacle of the congregation:... and sprinkle of the blood seven times before the Lord, before the vail of the sanctuary. And put some of the blood on the horns of the altar of sweet incense. This was a more solemn method of presenting the blood to the Lord than that used in the burnt offering; the offering of the blood, which was the vehicle of life, being the chief feature in the sin offering, as the consumption of the whole animal by the altar fire was in the burnt offering. In the burnt offerings and peace offerings the blood was thrown once on the altar of burnt sacrifice (see chapter Leviticus 1:5); now it is sprinkled, in a smaller quantity each time, but as often as seven times (the number seven symbolically representing completeness), before the vail which shrouded the ark. The altar of sweet incense is the golden altar, which stood within the tabernacle, in front of the vail. Perhaps the reason why the horns of the altar are specially appointed to have the blood placed on them is that they were regarded as the most sacred part of the altar, because they were its highest points, in which its elevation towards heaven culminated. The remainder of the victim's blood is to be poured at the bottom of the altar of the burnt offering, in the court of the tabernacle, to sink into the ground, because no more of it was wanted for ceremonial use. The internal fat is to be burnt upon the altar of the burnt offering, but not actually upon the smoldering burnt sacrifice, as in the case of the peace offerings; the sin offering preceding the burnt offering in order of time, while the peace offering followed it. The remainder of the animal is to be carried without the camp... and be burnt, because its flesh was at once accursed and most holy. It was accursed, as having been symbolically the vehicle of the sins laid upon it by the offerer; therefore it must not be consumed upon the altar of God, but be destroyed with fire outside the camp, typifying the removal from God's kingdom, and the final destruction of all that is sinful. But yet it was most holy, as its blood had been taken into the tabernacle, and had served as a propitiation; therefore, if it had to be burnt, it yet had to be burnt solemnly, reverently, and as a ceremonial act, in a place appointed for the purpose. The writer of the Epistle to the Hebrews notices that one of the points in which our Lord was the antitype of the sin offering was that he "suffered without the gate," "that he might sanctify the people with his own blood" (Hebrews 13:12), which was thus indicated to have been carried within the sanctuary, that is, into heaven. If the priest that is anointed do sin,.... That is, the high priest, as the Targums of Onkelos and Jonathan, and the Septuagint version, render it; who in after times was only anointed, though at first Aaron's sons were anointed with him; so an high priest is described in Leviticus 21:10 and such an one was liable to sin, and often did; which shows not only that the greatest and best of men are not without sin, but proves what the apostle observes, that the law made men high priests which had infirmity, even sinful infirmities, who needed to offer for themselves as well as for the people; by which it appeared that perfection could not be had by the Levitical priesthood, and that it was proper it should cease, and another priesthood take place, Hebrews 7:11,

according to the sin of the people; committing the like sins of error and ignorance as the common people, to which he was liable as they; or "to make the people guilty"; as the margin reads; to which agrees the Septuagint version, "so that the people sin"; and the Vulgate Latin version, "making the people to sin"; either by his doctrine or example, and both through ignorance, heedlessness, and inadvertency: the Targum of Jonathan is,"when he offers the offering of sin for the people, not according to its manner''or rite; as if his sin lay in erring while he was offering; but be it in which way it may, whether by any unadvised inadvertent action of his own, or ignorant instruction of the people, so causing them to err, or any ignorance or mistake in offering the sacrifices of the people:

then let him bring for the sin which he has sinned; in either way:

a young bullock; not an ox which was three years old, nor a calf which was but of one year, but a bullock which was of two years; so Maimonides (q) observes, that wherever it is said a calf, that is a young one of the first year, but a bullock it is a young one of the second year: as are men's characters, so are the aggravations of their sins, and sacrifices were proportioned thereunto; the high priest was obliged to bring the same offering as the whole congregation did in a like case; see Leviticus 4:13.

without blemish; a type of the sacrifice of Christ offered up without spot to God, as it follows:

unto the Lord; against whom sin is committed, and therefore sacrifice both in the type and antitype must be brought and offered up to him, by whom it is accepted, and to whom it is of a sweetsmelling savour, namely, the unblemished sacrifice of Christ:

for a sin offering; or "for sin": the sin offering is called sin itself, and so is Christ the antitype of it, 2 Corinthians 5:21 Christ is most holy in himself, had no sin in him, nor knew any, nor were any committed by him; yet he appeared in the likeness of sinful flesh, took the place of sinners, and was their substitute, had all their sins laid upon him, and was by imputation made sin itself, and became an offering for it, and so fully answered the type of the sin offering.

(q) Maaseh Hakorbanot, c. 1. sect. 14. Le 4:3-35. Sin Offering for the Priest.

3. If the priest that is anointed do sin—that is, the high priest, in whom, considering his character as typical mediator, and his exalted office, the people had the deepest interest; and whose transgression of any part of the divine law, therefore, whether done unconsciously or heedlessly, was a very serious offense, both as regarded himself individually, and the influence of his example. He is the person principally meant, though the common order of the priesthood was included.

according to the sin of the people—that is, bring guilt on the people. He was to take a young bullock (the age and sex being expressly mentioned), and having killed it according to the form prescribed for the burnt offerings, he was to take it into the holy place and sprinkle the atoning blood seven times before the veil, and tip with the crimson fluid the horns of the golden altar of incense, on his way to the court of the priests,—a solemn ceremonial appointed only for very grave and heinous offenses, and which betokened that his sin, though done in ignorance, had vitiated all his services; nor could any official duty he engaged in be beneficial either to himself or the people, unless it were atoned for by blood.4:1-12 Burnt-offerings, meat-offerings, and peace-offerings, had been offered before the giving of the law upon mount Sinai; and in these the patriarchs had respect to sin, to make atonement for it. But the Jews were now put into a way of making atonement for sin, more particularly by sacrifice, as a shadow of good things to come; yet the substance is Christ, and that one offering of himself, by which he put away sin. The sins for which the sin-offerings were appointed are supposed to be open acts. They are supposed to be sins of commission, things which ought not to have been done. Omissions are sins, and must come into judgment: yet what had been omitted at one time, might be done at another; but a sin committed was past recall. They are supposed to be sins committed through ignorance. The law begins with the case of the anointed priest. It is evident that God never had any infallible priest in his church upon earth, when even the high priest was liable to fall into sins of ignorance. All pretensions to act without error are sure marks of Antichrist. The beast was to be carried without the camp, and there burned to ashes. This was a sign of the duty of repentance, which is the putting away sin as a detestable thing, which our soul hates. The sin-offering is called sin. What they did to that, we must do to our sins; the body of sin must be destroyed, Ro 6:6. The apostle applies the carrying this sacrifice without the camp to Christ, Heb 13:11-13.
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