Shemot 30:32

לבעַל־בְּשַׂ֤ר אָדָם֙ לֹ֣א יִיסָ֔ךְ וּבְמַ֨תְכֻּנְתּ֔וֹ לֹ֥א תַֽעֲשׂ֖וּ כָּמֹ֑הוּ קֹ֣דֶשׁ ה֔וּא קֹ֖דֶשׁ יִֽהְיֶ֥ה לָכֶֽם

"It shall not be poured upon human flesh, and according to its formula you shall not make anything like it. It is holy; it shall be holy to you."

What is the meaning of the beginning of that verse? The specific purpose of the anointment oil is to be smeared on human flesh. The rest of the verse is clear in the commandment not to duplicate it but why does it say "not to be poured on human flesh?"


1 Answer 1


Sefer Hachinuch

שלא יסוך זר בשמן המשחה - שלא למשח בשמן המשחה שעשה משה אלא כהנים לבד. שנאמר (שמות ל לב) על בשר אדם לא ייסך. ונתבאר בכתוב שמי שמשח (שנמשח) בו במזיד, חיב כרת, שנאמר (שם לג) ואשר יתן ממנו על זר ונכרת. ואם נמשח בו בשוגג, חיב חטאת קבועה. כלומר, שאין חלוק בו בין הדל והעשיר אלא דבר קבוע הוא לכל.

To not rub a foreigner (layman) with anointing oil: To not anoint [anyone] with the anointing oil that Moshe made, except for priests alone - as it is stated (Exodus 30:32), "It must not be rubbed on any person’s flesh." And it is elucidated in the Scripture that one who anoints (is anointed) with it volitionally is liable for excision, as it is stated (Exodus 30:33), "and one who puts any of it on a foreigner, shall be cut off." And if he is anointed by accident, he is liable for a fixed sin-offering - meaning to say that there is no difference between the poor and the wealthy, but rather it is a set thing for all.

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