He next salts [the handful of flour] and sets it upon the fire'; for it is written: And every oblation of thy meal-offering shalt thou season with salt.2 'When the handful has been offered, the remainder may be eaten'. Whence is this? — For it is written: And the priest shall burn the memorial of it etc.,3 and it is written: And that which is left of the meal-offering shall be Aaron's and his sons'.4 'When the handful has been offered etc.' — this5 is differently explained by two teachers; for it has been reported: From what time does the taking of the 'handful' render the eating of the remainder permissible? R. Hanina says: When the fire takes hold of it; R. Johanan said: When the fire burns the greater part of it. 'And the priests are allowed to mix it with wine, oil and honey' — for what reason? The text states: By reason of the anointing,6 i.e., as a mark of eminence, in the same manner as kings take their food. 'And are only forbidden to make it leaven'; for it is written: It shall not be baked with leaven, their portion7 — R. Simeon b. Lakish says: [It means] that even their portion must not be baked with leaven.
WITH ALL OTHER MEAL-OFFERINGS etc. But do all other meal-offerings8 require oil and frankincense? Behold, there is the meal-offering of the sinner concerning which the All-Merciful said: He shall put no oil upon it, neither shall he put any frankincense thereon!9 — This is what he intends: All other meal-offerings require oil and frankincense, and consist of wheat in the form of fine flour; but the meal-offering of the sinner, although it does not require oil and frankincense, consists of wheat in the form of fine-flour; the meal-offering of the 'omer, although it consists of barley, requires oil and frankincense and is in the form of groats; but this one [of the suspected woman] does not require oil and frankincense, and consists of barley in the form of coarse flour.
It has been taught: R. Simeon said: It is right that the meal-offering of a sinner should require oil and frankincense, so that a sinner should not gain;10 why, then, are they not required? That his offering should not be luxurious. It is also right that an ordinary sin-offering11 should require drink-offerings, so that a sinner should not gain; why, then, are they not required? That his offering should not be luxurious. The sin-offering of a leper, however, and his trespass-offering do require drink-offerings because they are not due to sin. But that is not so; for, behold R. Samuel b. Nahmani said in the name of R. Jonathan: On account of seven faults does the plague of leprosy occur etc.!12 — In this case he received atonement [of his sin] by the plague13 he suffered; and when he brings an offering, it is only to allow him to participate in what is holy.14 According to this conclusion, the sin-offering of a Nazirite should require drink-offerings, since it is not due to a sin! He holds with R. Eliezer ha-Kappar who said: A Nazirite is also a sinner.15
Sotah 15bHe had heard R. Meir say: She fed him with the dainties of the world; therefore her offering is animal's fodder.1 Then said he to him, You may be right about a rich woman, but what of a poor woman! But [the reason is], As her actions were the action of an animal, so her offering [consisted of] animal's fodder.
MISHNAH. [THE PRIEST] TAKES AN EARTHENWARE BOWL AND POURS HALF A LOG OF WATER INTO IT FROM THE LAVER. R. JUDAH SAYS: A QUARTER [OF A LOG]. JUST AS [R. JUDAH] REDUCES THE AMOUNT OF WRITING,2 SO HE REDUCES THE QUANTITY OF WATER. [THE PRIEST] ENTERS THE TEMPLE AND TURNS RIGHT. THERE WAS A PLACE THERE A CUBIT SQUARE IN EXTENT WITH A MARBLE TABLET, TO WHICH A RING WAS ATTACHED. HE LIFTS THIS OUT, TAKES SOME DUST FROM BENEATH IT WHICH HE PUTS [INTO THE BOWL] JUST SUFFICIENT TO BE VISIBLE ABOVE THE WATER; AS IT IS SAID, AND OF THE DUST THAT IS ON THE FLOOR OF THE TABERNACLE THE PRIEST SHALL TAKE, AND PUT IT INTO THE WATER.3
GEMARA. A Tanna taught: [The priest takes] a new earthenware bowl — such is the opinion of R. Ishmael. What is R. Ishmael's reason?4 — He derives it from the common use of the word 'vessel' [here and in the law] of a leper. As with the latter new earthenware was required, so here likewise was new earthenware required. Whence is it that there [with a leper it must be new]? — For it is written: And the priest shall command to kill one of the birds in an earthen vessel over running water5 — as it must be running water which has not been previously used, so also it must be a vessel which has not been previously used. According to this argument, as there [with a leper] it had to be running water, so also here [with a suspected woman] it had to be running water! — In the view of R. Ishmael that is indeed so; for R. Johanan said the water from the laver6 was according to R. Ishmael spring-water, and the Sages declare that it can be ordinary water. It may, however, be objected [to this argument] that as with a leper it is necessary to have cedar wood, hyssop and scarlet,7 [so are these required with the water of bitterness]!8 — Rabbah said: The text mentions in an earthen vessel,9 i.e., a vessel to which I referred previously.10
Raba said: [The Rabbis in our Mishnah] did not teach [that a used vessel may be employed] except when its exterior is not blackened [by smoke]; but if its exterior is blackened it is unfit for use. What is their reason? — It is analogous to the water: just as the water must not be changed in appearance,11 so also the vessel must not be changed in appearance. Raba asked: How is it if the earthenware had been blackened and re-whitened by being passed through the furnace again? Do we say that since it has once been rejected, it remains rejected; or perhaps, since it has been restored, it is suitable? — Come and hear: 'R. Eleazar says: If a man twisted cedar wood, scarlet and hyssop into a cord for the purpose of carrying his bundle on his back, they are unfit [to be used in the ceremony of purification];' and yet they are here again smoothed out!12 But in that case we suppose that [some of the material] has been peeled off.13
[THE PRIEST] ENTERS THE TEMPLE AND TURNS RIGHT etc. For what reason? Because a Master has declared: All the turns which thou dost make must only be to the right.
THERE WAS A PLACE THERE A CUBIT etc. Our Rabbis have taught: 'And of the dust that is etc.' — it is possible to think that [the priest] may prepare [dust] from outside and bring it in; therefore there is a text to state, 'On the floor of the tabernacle'. If 'on the floor of the tabernacle', it is possible to think that he may dig for it with an axe; therefore there is a text to state 'that is'. How was it done? If [dust] is there, take of it; if none is there, put some there [and take of it]. Another [Baraitha] taught: 'And of the dust that is' — this teaches that he prepares some from outside and brings it in. 'On the floor of the tabernacle' — Issi b. Judah says: It includes the floor
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