6. The three principal parts of the same: I. Laws concerning sacrifices, and the types and rites of the same (Leviticus 1-7). II. The consecration of Aaron and his sons (Leviticus 8-10). III. Diverse laws, concerning the sanctification of the entire people and of individuals (Leviticus 11-27). A Synoptic Table, and the Interpreters of the book, ancient, Reformed, Lutheran, Roman Catholic, and Hebrew.
According to the Hebrews the book is divided into nine Parashot. Among us a tripartite division according to the laws is approved, which are there described to be of a threefold sort, concerning Sacrifices First (chapters 1-7), Priests Second (chapters 8-10), faithful people of diverse sorts (chapters 11-27).
I. Laws concerning sacrifices, and the types and rites of the same, Chapters 1-7.
1. Laws concerning the types of sacrifices, chapters 1-5. Now, the sacrifices are those that are defined by certain laws, or
a. Voluntary, which were able to be offered freely and willingly, as often as one was pleased to do so. And they are,
α. The Law of the עוֹלָה, burnt offering, of an animate sacrifice ascending, whereby the entire animal, with only the hide excepted, was going up onto the altar; of cattle (verses 1-9), sheep, goats (verses 10-13), and of turtle-doves (verses 14-17): chapter 1.
β. The Law of the מִנְחָה, minchah, tribute or gift, of an inanimate sacrifice, consisting of flour, oil, and frankincense, a part of which the Priest was taking (verses 1-12), where also salt is set forth as necessary in sacrifices (verse 13), and the law of firstfruits (verses 14-16): chapter 2.
γ. The Law of the שְׁלָמִים, peace offering, of which sort were the thank offering, the votive offering, the freewill offering, of which also it was lawful for private individuals to eat, so that thus they might come unto the communion of the altar; and they were consisting of oxen (verses 1-5), of sheep and goats (verses 6-17): chapter 3.
b. Necessary, and those of two sorts,
α. The Sacrifice עַל חַטָּאת, for sin through error, in doing anything forbidden by God, admitted, and to be expiated; which was obliged to be offered either for the anointed priest (verses 1-12), or for the congregation (verses 13-21), or for the Prince (verses 22-26), or for individual believers (verses 27-35): chapter 4.
β. The Sacrifice אָשָׁם, for guilt, or a satisfaction, required on account of some sins, suppose, cursing, perjury, error (verses 1-13), ignorance, etc. (verses 14-19): chapter 5.
2. Laws concerning the rites of the sacrifices, as,
a. Concerning offering the guilt offering for one that did not restore another’s property (verses 1-7); concerning the rite of the burnt offering, that it might be offered upon the altar all night until morning, and unto this end a perpetual fire might burn on the altar (verses 8-13); and also concerning the right of the minchah (verses 14-18), the sacrifice of the Priest, on the day in which he is anointed (verses 19-23), and for sin (verses 24-30): chapter 6.
b. Concerning the rite of sacrifice for guilt (verses 1-10), and also of peace offerings (verses 11-21); concerning fat, blood, and priestly anointing (verses 22-38): chapter 7.
II. The consecration of Aaron and his sons, and what things happened concerning that, Chapters 8-10. See:
1. The inauguration of those, washed with water and clothed (verses 1-9), to the Priestly office (verses 10-36): chapter 8.
2. The administration of the Priestly Office (verses 1-21), and the appearance of the glory of God, namely, a fire appearing from Heaven, and consuming the first offering of Aaron (verses 22-24): chapter 9.
3. The punishment imposed upon Nadab and Abihu, the sons of Aaron, by their own invention placing fire in their censers, and θυμιάματα/incense on the fire, and offering it before the Lord (verses 1-7), where also to the Priests both the drinking of wine is prohibited (verses 8-11), and a portion of the sacrifices is assigned (verses 12-15), and Moses rebukes the sons of Aaron burning (verses 16-20): chapter 10.
III. Diverse laws concerning the sanctification of the whole people and of individuals: Chapters 11-27. See:
1. Ceremonial laws, concerning purifications, especially of various (chapters 11-17), as,
a. Concerning the distinction of clean and unclean animals (verses 1-42), and the purification of those things that were touched by the unclean (verses 43-47): chapter 11.
b. Concerning the purification of a woman after childbirth (verses 1-8): chapter 12.
c. Concerning leprosy (verses 1-44), and the purification of lepers (verses 45-59): chapter 13.
d. Concerning the cleansing of a healed leper (verses 1-32), and concerning the investigation of a house infected with leprosy, and the destruction of a house not healed, or the cleansing of one healed (verses 33-57): chapter 14.
e. Concerning the purification of one that is sick with gonorrhea, from whom semen discharged (verses 1-18), of a menstruous woman; concerning every emission of man and woman, and a man lying with an unclean woman (verses 19-33): chapter 15.
f. Concerning the time and rite of the Priest entering the sanctuary once yearly to cleanse the children of Israel from all sins (verses 1-19), and also concerning the two goats and the fast of the seventh month (verses 20-34): chapter 16.
g. Concerning not shedding the blood of a domestic animal in the camp, or outside the camp, but shedding it before the altar, so that the altar might be sprinkled with it (verses 1-6): concerning not offering sacrifices except to God, and before the tent of meeting (verses 7-9), and not eating blood, a corpse, or a thing dead of itself (verses 10-16): chapter 17.
2. Moral and judicial laws, serviceable to both tables of the Decalogue (chapters 18-21). See:
a. The laws concerning incest (verses 1-19), adultery (verse 20), Molech (verse 21), sins against nature (verses 22-30): chapter 18.
b. Concerning imitating the holiness of God (verses 1, 2), where there are miscellaneous precepts pertaining to the way of uprightness, and the formation of manners, as concerning parents, the Sabbath (verse 3), idols (verse 4), eating the flesh of sacrifices on the first and second day (verses 5-8), reaping (verses 9, 10), theft (verse 11), lying, perjury (verse 12), injuries (verses 13-15), calumnies (verse 16), hatred (verses 17, 18), not mixing diverse kinds (verse 19), the punishment of one that spoils a bondmaid (verses 20-22), the firstfruits (verses 23-25), magic (verse 26), beards (verse 27), cutting (verse 28), soothsayers (verses 29-31), foreigners (verses 32-34), judgments (verses 35-37): chapter 19.
c. Concerning the punishments of the scandals that were hitherto prohibited (verses 1-21), and religiously preserving holiness (verses 22-27): chapter 20.
3. Laws concerning the Priests (chapters 21, 22), as:
a. Concerning the purity, in which Priests, the overseers of religion, ought to lead by example; that they might not be defiled because of the dead; that they, by plucking out their hair, clipping their beard, etc., might not put forth signs of excessive sadness; that they might not marry a prostitute, or one put away (verses 1-9): so that the High Priest might not uncover his head, nor tear his clothes, etc. (verses 10-15); that one from the stock of Priests deformed with a defect of body might not offer (verses 16-24): chapter 21.
b. Of what sort the Priests ought to be, who were going to eat of the offerings of the Israelites; of what sort their family (verses 1-16): and concerning the wholeness of the sacrifices, even of the oblations for vows, and freewill offerings (verses 17-33): chapter 22.
4. Laws concerning the Sabbath (verses 1-3), and the feasts, or standing holy days (verses 4-44): chapter 23.
5. Laws concerning the oil for the lamps (verses 1-4), the showbread (verses 5-9), the punishment of certain crimes, where also punishment is exacted for blasphemy (verses 10-23): chapter 24.
6. Concerning the appointment of the Sabbath of the land every seven years (verses 1-7), and also concerning the liberty of the year of Jubilee (verses 8-55): chapter 25.
7. Repetition of certain Laws (verses 1, 2), the great happiness promised to those observing the law (verses 3-13), and most grievous punishments established for transgressors (verses 14-46): chapter 26.
8. Laws concerning the estimation or redemption both of man, consecrating himself or his value by vow (verses 1-8), and of an unclean animal dedicated to God as a sacrifice (verses 9-13), and of houses and fields (verses 14-25); concerning not consecrating the firstborn of animals, and redeeming it, if it be impure (verses 26, 27): concerning not redeeming the חֵרֶם, or any devoted thing (verse 28); finally, concerning redeeming the tithes of produce, but not exchanging nor redeeming oxen and sheep (verses 29-34): chapter 27.