And they brought seven bullocks, and seven rams, and seven lambs, and seven he goats, for a sin offering for the kingdom, and for the sanctuary, and for Judah. And he commanded the priests the sons of Aaron to offer them on the altar of the LORD.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)Seven bullocks . . . rams . . . lambs.—For a burnt offering (‘ôlah). See the legal prescriptions respecting the sin offering (Leviticus 4). On the present extraordinary occasion, an extraordinary sacrifice was offered. Balak and Balaam offered seven bullocks and seven rams as a burnt offering (Numbers 23:1-2, seq.).
And seven he goats, for a sin offering.—Comp. Ezra 6:17; Ezra 8:35; and Leviticus 4:23; Leviticus 4:28; also 2Chronicles 29:23. The reigning house and the sanctuary and the people had all contracted defilement during the late period of idolatry.
The priests the sons of Aaron to offer.—In careful accordance with the rule of the Torah.2 Chronicles 29:21. They brought seven bullocks — The number seven is customary in sacred matters, and is here used in regard of the vast numbers and various kinds of sins, the guilt whereof yet lay upon the kingdom, which was now to be expiated. Indeed, in case of one particular sin of ignorance committed by the people, there was but one bullock to be offered, but here the sins were many and presumptuous. For a sin-offering for the kingdom — To make atonement for the sins of the king, and the royal family, and the court. And for the sanctuary — For all the idolatry and uncleanness wherewith the temple had been polluted, which, as it had been cleansed naturally by the priests’ hands, so now it was to be purged morally by sacrifices. And for Judah — For the sins of all the people of Judah. They thought it not enough to lament and forsake their sins, but they brought a sin-offering. Even our repentance and reformation will not obtain pardon, but through Christ, who was made sin, that is, a sin-offering, for us.2 Chronicles 29:27. Leviticus 4:13,14, but here the sins were many and presumptuous, &c.
A sin-offering for the kingdom; to make atonement for the sins of the king, and the royal family, and the court.
For the sanctuary; for all the idolatry and uncleanness wherewith the temple had been polluted, which, as it had been cleansed naturally by the priests’ hands, so now was to be purged morally by sacrifices.
For Judah; for the sins of all the people of Judah. And they brought seven bullocks, and seven rams, and seven lambs, and seven he goats, for a sin offering for the kingdom, and for the sanctuary, and for Judah. And he commanded the priests the sons of Aaron to offer them on the altar of the LORD.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)21. they brought] Acc. to Leviticus 4:3; Leviticus 4:23; Leviticus 4:32 the sin offering might be a bullock or a he goat or a lamb. As the sacrifice was not for an individual but for a whole people the sin offering on this occasion consisted of seven of each of four different sacrificial animals.
for the kingdom] i.e. for the kingly house.
for the sanctuary] i.e. for the Temple (cp. Leviticus 16:16), but probably inclusive of the personnel of the Temple, i.e. the priests and Levites, since otherwise they would have been passed over in the great sin offering.
on the altar of the Lord] Not on the altar of Ahaz (2 Kings 16:11).Verse 21. - There is diversity of opinion, whether the seven bullocks (פָרִים), seven rams (אֵילִים), seven lambs (כְבָשִׁים) were burnt offering (עולָה), or, with the seven he-goats (צְפִירֵי עִזּים), were sin offering (חַטָּאת). Some think (as, for instance, Canon Rawlinson) that they were sin offering, as the account of the offering of them (ver. 22) takes priority for them over the he-goats; others (as Bertheau, Professor J. G. Murphy, etc.), that they were certainly burnt offering. It scarcely appears as though much stress can be laid upon what is apparently the chief reason of Canon Rawlinson's opinion, in face of the immediate language of the last sentence of our ver. 24, "for the king commended the burnt offering and the sin offering for all Israel." The fact of no mention of burnt offering in our present verse, and of the natural construction of the description, "for a sin offering for the kingdom," etc., as applying to all that had preceded, seems the better argument, and all that is necessary, unless something moderately decisive be forthcoming to rebut it. The solution of all, however, is probably to our hand in Ezra 8:35, which is a very close and significant parallel to our present verse. The first mention of the sacrifice of פָרִים, or "young bullocks" is found in Exodus 24:5, and afterwards in Exodus 29:1, 3; Leviticus 4:3, etc.; Leviticus 8:2, 14, etc. The first mention of the sacrifice of אֵילִים is Genesis 22:13; and, after, Exodus 29:15-18, 19-21, etc.; Leviticus 5:15; Leviticus 8:2, 22, etc. The first mention of the sacrifices of the כְבָשִׁים is Exodus 12:3-7, and, after, Exodus 29:38, etc. The first mention of the sacrifice of צְפִירֵי עִזּים is the present passage; and, after, Ezra 8:25. But the mention of sacrifices of goats is found in Leviticus 1:10; Leviticus 3:12, and often besides. For the kingdom; i.e. probably for "all that are in authority," viz. the king and rulers, the Hebrew word (מַמְלָכָה) designating here those exercising dominion (1 Kings 11:11; 1 Kings 14:8; 1 Samuel 28:17) rather than the country under dominion (Joshua 10:2; 1 Samuel 27:5). It is, however, possible that allusion to the whole kingdom of Judah and Israel is made here. For the sanctuary; i.e. those who officiated in holy things. For Judah; i.e. for all the people. 2 Chronicles 30:12.
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