Deuteronomy 16:2
Thou shalt therefore sacrifice the passover unto the LORD thy God, of the flock and the herd, in the place which the LORD shall choose to place his name there.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
Deuteronomy 16:2-3. Thou shalt sacrifice the passover — Strictly so called; which was the paschal lamb. The sheep and oxen here mentioned were additional sacrifices which were to be offered in the seven days of the paschal solemnity, Numbers 28:18. Indeed, the passage may be rendered, Thou shalt therefore observe the feast of the passover unto the Lord thy God with sheep and with oxen. Bread of affliction — So called, because it was not pleasant nor easily digested, and was appointed to be used to put them in mind of their afflictions and miseries in Egypt, and of their coming out from thence in haste, being allowed no time to leaven or prepare their bread.

16:1-17 The laws for the three yearly feasts are here repeated; that of the Passover, that of the Pentecost, that of Tabernacles; and the general law concerning the people's attendance. Never should a believer forget his low estate of guilt and misery, his deliverance, and the price it cost the Redeemer; that gratitude and joy in the Lord may be mingled with sorrow for sin, and patience under the tribulations in his way to the kingdom of heaven. They must rejoice in their receivings from God, and in their returns of service and sacrifice to him; our duty must be our delight, as well as our enjoyment. If those who were under the law must rejoice before God, much more we that are under the grace of the gospel; which makes it our duty to rejoice evermore, to rejoice in the Lord always. When we rejoice in God ourselves, we should do what we can to assist others also to rejoice in him, by comforting the mourners, and supplying those who are in want. All who make God their joy, may rejoice in hope, for He is faithful that has promised.Sacrifice the passover - "i. e." offer the sacrifices proper to the feast of the Passover, which lasted seven days. Compare a similar use of the word in a general sense in John 18:28. In the latter part of Deuteronomy 16:4 and in the following verses Moses passes, as the context again shows, into the narrower sense of the word Passover.2. Thou shalt therefore sacrifice the passover—not the paschal lamb, which was strictly and properly the passover. The whole solemnity is here meant, as is evident from the mention of the additional victims that required to be offered on the subsequent days of the feast (Nu 28:18, 19; 2Ch 35:8, 9), and from the allusion to the continued use of unleavened bread for seven days, whereas the passover itself was to be eaten at once. The words before us are equivalent to "thou shalt observe the feast of the passover." The passover, i.e. either,

1. Properly and strictly so called, which was the paschal lamb, and so the sheep and oxen, which here follow, are mentioned only as additional sacrifices, which were to be offered in the seven days of the paschal solemnity, Numbers 28:18,19, &c. Or,

2. Largely, to wit, for the passover-offerings, to wit, which were offered after the lamb in the seven days, and so this very word is used 2 Chronicles 35:8,9. And this signification seems necessary here, partly because it is here said to consist

of the flock and of the herd, or of sheep and oxen, and partly because it follows, Deu 16:3, Thou shalt eat no leavened bread with it, seven days shalt thou eat unleavened bread therewith, i.e. with the passover, which could not be done with the passover strictly so called, which was to be wholly spent in one day. Or,

3. The feast of the passover, and so the place may be rendered, Thou shalt therefore observe or keep the feast of the passover (as those same Hebrew words are taken, Numbers 9:5 Joshua 5:10 2 Chronicles 35:1,17,18,19) unto the Lord thy God, with sheep and with oxen, as is prescribed, Numbers 28:18, &c.

Thou shalt therefore sacrifice the passover unto the Lord thy God,.... In the month Abib, and in the night of that month they came out of Egypt, even on the fourteenth day of it at night, between the two evenings, as the Targum of Jonathan; which was a lamb, and typical of Christ, the passover sacrificed for us, 1 Corinthians 5:7.

of the flock and the herd; that is, you shall sacrifice also the offerings which were offered throughout the seven days of unleavened bread, and these were both sheep and oxen, Numbers 28:19 and are expressly called passover offerings and peace offerings, 2 Chronicles 30:21, for what was strictly and properly the passover was only of the flock, a lamb, and not of the herd, or a bullock; though Aben Ezra says there were some that thought that in Egypt it was only a lamb or a kid, but now it might be a bullock; which he observes is not right. It may be indeed that the word "passover" here is a general term, comprehending the whole passover solemnity, and all the sacrifices of the seven days: the Jews commonly understand this clause of the Chagigah, or feast of the fifteenth day, the first day of unleavened bread, and so the Targum of Jonathan,"and the sheep and the oxen on the morrow;''some distinguish them thus, the flock for the duty of the passover, the herd for the peace offerings, so Aben Ezra; or as Jarchi interprets it, the flock of the lambs and kids, and the herd for the Chagigah or festival; in the Talmud (m); the flock, this is the passover; the herd, this is the Chagigah, so Abendana: there was a Chagigah of the fourteenth day, which was brought with the lamb and eaten first, when the company was too large for the lamb, that their might eat with satiety (n); but this was not reckoned obligatory upon them (o), but they were bound to bring their Chagigah on the fifteenth day:

in the place which the Lord thy God shall choose to place his name there; that is, at Jerusalem, as the event has shown; hence we read of the parents of our Lord going up to Jerusalem every year at the feast of the passover, Luke 2:41.

(m) T. Bab. Pesachim, fol. 70. 2.((n) Jarchi in loc. Maimon. Hilchot Corban Pesach, c. 8. l. 3.((o) T. Bab. Pesachim, fol. 71. 1, 2. Maimon. ut supra, (n)) c. 10. sect. 13. Aruch in voc. fol. 58. 1.

Thou shalt therefore {b} sacrifice the passover unto the LORD thy God, of the flock and the herd, in the place which the LORD shall choose to place his name there.

(b) You shall eat the Easter lamb.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
2. of the flock and the herd] Sheep, goat or ox, and doubtless as in J, a firstling. P, Exodus 12:3-6, prescribes a male of the first year (see Driver’s note), but limits it to a lamb or kid; in later practice a lamb was invariably chosen.

in the place which Jehovah shall choose] To Jehovah Sam. LXX add thy God. In J, Exodus 12:21-26, the service is domestic; and P, Exodus 12:3 ff., also preserves its domestic character, cp. Exodus 12:46.

Deuteronomy 16:2Israel was to make ready the Passover to the Lord in the earing month (see at Exodus 12:2). The precise day is supposed to be known from Exodus 12, as in Exodus 23:15. פּסח עשׂה (to prepare the Passover), which is used primarily to denote the preparation of the paschal lamb for a festal meal, is employed here in a wider signification viz., "to keep the Passover." At this feast they were to slay sheep and oxen to the Lord for a Passover, at the place, etc. In Deuteronomy 16:2, as in Deuteronomy 16:1, the word "Passover" is employed in a broader sense, and includes not only the paschal lamb, but the paschal sacrifices generally, which the Rabbins embrace under the common name of chagiga; not the burnt-offerings and sin-offerings, however, prescribed in Numbers 28:19-26, but all the sacrifices that were slain at the feast of the Passover (i.e., during the seven days of the Mazzoth, which are included under the name of pascha) for the purpose of holding sacrificial meals. This is evident from the expression "of the flock and the herd;" as it was expressly laid down, that only a שׂה, i.e., a yearling animal of the sheep or goats, was to be slain for the paschal meal on the fourteenth of the month in the evening, and an ox was never slaughtered in the place of the lamb. But if any doubt could exist upon this point, it would be completely set aside by Deuteronomy 16:3 : "Thou shalt eat no leavened bread with it: seven days shalt thou eat unleavened bread therewith." As the word "therewith" cannot possibly refer to anything else than the "Passover" in Deuteronomy 16:2, it is distinctly stated that the slaughtering and eating of the Passover was to last seven days, whereas the Passover lamb was to be slain and consumed in the evening of the fourteenth Abib (Exodus 12:10). Moses called the unleavened bread "the bread of affliction," because the Israelites had to leave Egypt in anxious flight (Exodus 12:11) and were therefore unable to leaven the dough (Exodus 12:39), for the purpose of reminding the congregation of the oppression endured in Egypt, and to stir them up to gratitude towards the Lord their deliverer, that they might remember that day as long as they lived. (On the meaning of the Mazzothy, see at Exodus 12:8 and Exodus 12:15.) - On account of the importance of the unleavened bread as a symbolical shadowing forth of the significance of the Passover, as the feast of the renewal and sanctification of the life of Israel, Moses repeats in Deuteronomy 16:4 two of the points in the law of the feast: first of all the one laid down in Exodus 13:7, that no leaven was to be seen in the land during the seven days; and secondly, the one in Exodus 23:18 and Exodus 34:25, that none of the flesh of the paschal lamb was to be left till the next morning, in order that all corruption might be kept at a distance from the paschal food. Leaven, for example, sets the dough in fermentation, from which putrefaction ensues; and in the East, if flesh is kept, it very quickly decomposes. He then once more fixes the time and place for keeping the Passover (the former according to Exodus 12:6 and Leviticus 23:5, etc.), and adds in Deuteronomy 16:7 the express regulation, that not only the slaughtering and sacrificing, but the roasting (see at Exodus 12:9) and eating of the paschal lamb were to take place at the sanctuary, and that the next morning they could turn and go back home. This rule contains a new feature, which Moses prescribes with reference to the keeping of the Passover in the land of Canaan, and by which he modifies the instructions for the first Passover in Egypt, to suit the altered circumstances. In Egypt, when Israel was not yet raised into the nation of Jehovah, and had as yet no sanctuary and no common altar, the different houses necessarily served as altars. But when this necessity was at an end, the slaying and eating of the Passover in the different houses were to cease, and they were both to take place at the sanctuary before the Lord, as was the case with the feast of Passover at Sinai (Numbers 9:1-5). Thus the smearing of the door-posts with the blood was tacitly abolished, since the blood was to be sprinkled upon the altar as sacrificial blood, as it had already been at Sinai. - The expression "to thy tents," for going "home," points to the time when Israel was till dwelling in tents, and had not as yet secured any fixed abodes and houses in Canaan, although this expression was retained at a still later time (e.g., 1 Samuel 13:2; 2 Samuel 19:9, etc.). The going home in the morning after the paschal meal, is not to be understood as signifying a return to their homes in the different towns of the land, but simply, as even Riehm admits, to their homes or lodgings at the place of the sanctuary. How very far Moses was from intending to release the Israelites from the duty of keeping the feast for seven days, is evident from the fact that in Deuteronomy 16:8 he once more enforces the observance of the seven days' feast. The two clauses, "six days thou shalt eat mazzoth," and "on the seventh day shall be azereth (Eng. Ver. 'a solemn assembly') to the Lord thy God," are not placed in antithesis to each other, so as to imply (in contradiction to Deuteronomy 16:3 and Deuteronomy 16:4; Exodus 12:18-19; Exodus 13:6-7; Leviticus 23:6; Numbers 28:17) that the feast of Mazzoth was to last only six days instead of seven; but the seventh day is brought into especial prominence as the azereth of the feast (see at Leviticus 23:36), simply because, in addition to the eating of mazzoth, there was to be an entire abstinence from work, and this particular feature might easily have fallen into neglect at the close of the feast. But just as the eating of mazzoth for seven days is not abolished by the first clause, so the suspension of work on the first day is not abolished by the second clause, any more than in Exodus 13:6 the first day is represented as a working day by the fact that the seventh day is called "a feast to Jehovah."
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