Temple 201-The Daily Tamid Service-Part 3

We are going to pick up this teaching in Tamid 3.7 of the Mishnah.

He reached the northern wicket (door). The great gate (to the Heichal, or Holy Place) had two wickets (doors), one to the north (of the great gate) and another to the south. By that gate to the south none ever entered, whereof it is expressly said by Ezekiel, “And the Lord said unto me, this gate shall be shut, it shall not be opened, neither shall any man enter in by it, for the Lord, the God of Israel, hath entered in by it; therefore it shall be shut (People think that this door is the Golden Gate of the outer wall of the Temple Mount that is shut today and can be seen, but that is the wrong idea. This door is in the Sanctuary building-Ezek 44.1-2). He took the key and opened the wicket (the northern one). He entered into a cell (there were 38 cells in this building that were on the north, south and west side called “ta’im”), and from the cell into the sanctuary until he reached the great gate. When he reached the great gate he drew back the bolt and the locks and opened it. He that slaughtered (the Tamid lamb) never slaughtered until he heard the noise of the opening of the great gate. The Tamid lamb was waiting. A priest was on the east side of the lamb looking west. To the south a priest was waiting to catch the blood. When the sound of the gate was heard, they killed the lamb, and the Tamid service began (The opening of this gate is an idiom for Rosh ha Shannah and “business” with the Lord began).

From Jericho they could hear the noise of the great gate; from Jericho they could hear the sound of the magrefah (this was a musical instrument like a bag-pipe); from Jericho they could hear the noise of the wooden device (the Muchni) which Ben Katin made for the laver (Kior); from Jericho they could hear the voice of Gabini the herald (the Temple Crier or “gever” that is translated “rooster” in the New Testament, what Peter heard at Yeshua’s trial); from Jerich they could hear the sound of the flute; from Jericho they could hear the sound of the cymbal; from Jericho they could hear the sound of the singing; from Jericho they could hear the sound of the shofar; and some say, even the voice of the High Priest when he pronounced the Name (of God, YHVH) on the Day of Atonement; from Jericho they could smell the smell at the compounding of the incense. R. Eleazar ben Diglai said “My father’s house kept goats in the mountain of Machwar (Macherus, east of the Dead Sea) and they used to sneeze from the smell of the compounding of the incense (The term “Jericho” used here is a rabbinic expression, an idiom, meaning “very loud” or “very much” and was an exaggeration).

He to whom it fell to clean the inner Altar of ashes went in and took the ash-bin, set it down before him and scooped up the ashes with both hands and put them into it; what was left at the last he swept into it; there he left it and came away. He to whom it fell (by lot) to trim the Candlestick (Menorah) went in and if he found the two easternmost lamps burning he trimmed the rest, but left them burning as they were (but trimmed the other five). If he found that they had gone out, he trimmed them and kindled them from those that were still alight, and then trimmed the rest. There was a stone before the Candlestick (Menorah) in which there were three steps; on this the priest stood to trim the lamps. He left the oil-jar on the second step and came away.

The lamb was not wholly bound up but only tied (chains with pressure points were used to calm the lamb down. This technique is used today), and they to whom it fell to take the members (of the lamb) laid hold on it. And thus it was tied up, with its head to the south and its face to the west. He that slaughtered it stood to the east with his face to the west (facing the Kodesh ha Kodeshim). The Tamid lamb of the morning was slaughtered at the northwestern corner (of the Altar) at the second ring (there were four rows of six rings, and the second ring is the second ring in from the Altar in the row closest to the Sanctuary building); that of the afternoon was slaughtered at the northeastern corner (of the Altar) at the second ring (this was the second ring in from the Altar in the most eastern row). He whose lot it was to slaughter slaughtered it; and he whose lot it was to receive the (the blood) received the blood and came to the northeastern corner (of the Altar) and sprinkled it to the east and to the north (corner); then he came to the southwestern corner of the Altar and sprinkled it to the east and to the south. The residue of the blood was poured out at the base of the Altar on the south side (the blood was put in particular locations).

He that slaughtered it did not break its hind leg but pierced the knee-joint and so hung it up (on a pillar); he flayed it (rightly dividing) downwards as far as the breast; when he reached the breast he cut off the head and gave it to him whose lot it was to take it. He cut off the shanks and gave them to him whose lot it was to take them. He stripped off all the hide, slit the heart and let out its blood (these priests were standing in line). He cut off the fore-legs and gave them to him whose lot it was to take them. He came up to the right hind-leg, cut it off, and gave it with the two stones (testicles) to him whose lot they fell. He slit (the carcass) so that all the inward parts lay open before him. He removed the fat and put it above where the head was cut off. He removed the inward parts and gave them to him whose lot it was to swill them (wash or rinse them). The stomach was swilled as many times as it needed in the swilling chamber, and the inwards were rinsed at least three times on the marble tables between the pillars (Shekalim 6.4-there were eight of them).

He took the knife and cut asunder the lungs from the liver, and the lobe of the liver from the liver itself, but he did not remove it. He cut open the breast and gave it to him to whose lot it fell. He came up to the right flank and cut downwards as far as the backbone; he did touch the backbone itself he came to the two small ribs; he then cut off the flank and gave it to him to whose lot it fell, with the liver attached thereto. He came up to the neck and left with its two ribs on either side; he cut it off and gave it to him whose lot it fell, with the windpipe, heart and lungs attached thereto. He came to the left flank and left with its two thin ribs above and two below; and in like manner he left them on the other flank; thus with both flanks he left two each above, and two below. Then he cut it off and gave it to whose lot it fell, with the backbone and spleen attached thereto. This was the larger portion, but they used to the right flank larger, since the liver was attached thereto. He came up to the rump and cut it off and gave it to whose lot it fell, with the fat tail (called the “kelev”), the lobe of the liver and the two kidneys attached thereto. He took the left hind-leg and gave it to whose lot it fell. So they all stood in line with the members of the lamb in their hands: the first bore the head and a hind-leg, the head in his right hand, its muzzle along his arm, and its horns in his fingers, and the place where it was slaughtered upwards, with the fat thereon, and the right hind-leg in his left hand with the flayed end outermost; the second bore the two fore-legs, the right leg in his right hand, the left leg in his left hand, with the flayed end outermost; the third (priest) bore the rump and the other hind-leg, the rump in his right hand and the fat tail hanging down between his fingers, and the lobe of the liver together with the two kidneys, while the left-hind leg was in his left hand, with its flayed end outermost; the fourth bore the breast and the neck, the breast in his right hand, and the neck in bhis left, and the ribs thereof between his fingers; the fifth bore the two flanks, the right flank in his right hand and the left in his left, with their flayed end outermost; the sixth bore the inwards in a dish with the shanks set on top; the seventh bore the fine flour; the eighth bore the Baken Cakes; the ninth bore the wine (so we have nine priests doing this, with four going into the Sanctuary for a total of thirteen). They went along and put them on the lower half of the ramp and on the west side of it (closest to the Sanctuary building), salted them; then they came down and betook themselves to the Chamber of Hewn Stone (Lishkat ha Gazit) to recite the Shema (they left them there till Tamid 5.2).

We will pick up here in Tamid 5.1 in Part 4.

Posted in Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, The Temple, Understanding the New Testament

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