Shalom! In parashat Emor, both the Kohen and the sacrifice are disqualified based on physical deformities. What is the connection between the two? (Answers on different levels Pshat, Drash, Sod would be appreciated) :)

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They both are part of the service of G-d, and as such it is not befitting G-d's service for people or sacrifices with physical deformities to take part. See Rashi to Leviticus 21:18 in regards to why a kohein with a blemish cannot serve. He compares it to a verse in Malachi 1:8 that explains that offering a lame animal to a government dignitary is disrespectful, all the more so when in the service of G-d:

כי כל איש אשר בו מום לא יקרב FOR ANY MAN THAT HATH A BLEMISH SHALL NOT APPROACH — This means: it is not right that he should approach; It expresses the same idea as (Malachi 1:8) “[And if ye offer the blind for sacrifice, is it not evil? and if ye offer the lame or sick, is it not evil?] offer it now unto thy governor! [will he be pleased with thee?]”.

  • A thought occured to me while counting the omer tonight, that's not too clear yet. Yitzchak was the firstborn of Avraham Aveinu, and he was the sacrifice on the altar made my Avraham. Originally the priesthood was the pervue of the firstborn. The kohanim were a replacement for the firstborn after the sin of the golden calf, right? I can't quite connect the ideas but there seems to be some further historical precedence connecting the idea of the animals and the priesthood yesterday
  • Yitzchak was not the firstborn; Yishmael was.
    – N.T.
  • Yes you are right. Yishmael was the firstborn physically to Hagar to Avraham, but spiritually (with regards to the legacy of the Jewish faith), Yitzchak was the firstborn, isn't that why Hagar was sent away because Sarah sensed that he was unfit to be the progenitor of the Jewish faith? yesterday
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    We don't find that Yitzchak was considered firstborn. You might be thinking of Yaakov and Eisav, where that is very clear.
    – N.T.

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