Leviticus 4:13-18 NASB

[13]'Now if the whole congregation of Israel commits error and the matter escapes the notice of the assembly, and they commit any of the things which the Lord has commanded not to be done, and they become guilty; [14]when the sin which they have committed becomes known, then the assembly shall offer a bull of the herd for a sin offering and bring it before the tent of meeting. [15]Then the elders of the congregation shall lay their hands on the head of the bull before the Lord, and the bull shall be slain before the Lord. [16]Then the anointed priest is to bring some of the blood of the bull to the tent of meeting; [17]and the priest shall dip his finger in the blood and sprinkle it seven times before the Lord, in front of the veil. [18]He shall put some of the blood on the horns of the altar which is before the Lord in the tent of meeting; and all the blood he shall pour out at the base of the altar of burnt offering which is at the doorway of the tent of meeting.

Leviticus 4:27-30 NASB

[27]'Now if anyone of the common people sins unintentionally in doing any of the things which the Lord has commanded not to be done, and becomes guilty, [28]if his sin which he has committed is made known to him, then he shall bring for his offering a goat, a female without defect, for his sin which he has committed. [29]He shall lay his hand on the head of the sin offering and slay the sin offering at the place of the burnt offering. [30]The priest shall take some of its blood with his finger and put it on the horns of the altar of burnt offering; and all the rest of its blood he shall pour out at the base of the altar.

Emphasis added

What could have been the underlying differences in the SIN OFFERINGS in the above texts where in one instance in the case of whole congregation the blood is taken into the tent of the meeting & in the other instance in case of a common man the blood is poured at the base of the altar,yet both are for atonement of sin committed unintentional?

1 Answer 1


Lev 4 specifies sin offerings for

  1. annointed (high) priest (vv3-12)
  2. the whole congregation (vv13-21)
  3. a leader (vv22-26)
  4. an individual (vv27-35)

The sin offerings for the high priest and for the whole congregation are the same: bullock, blood brought into holy place, body burned outside the camp

The sin offerings for the leader and for an individual are almost the same. The only difference is that the leader offers a male goat and the individual offers a female goat or female sheep. The blood is not brought into the holy place and the body is not burned outside the camp.

The high priest needed to make propitiation for the sins of the whole congregation, so if he had offense between himself and God, the people could not be made right with God, so it was the same severity as if the whole congregation had sinned.

If a leader sinned in a way that made all the people sin, then in would be the preceding case of the whole congregation sinning.
But if he sinned affecting only himself, he is just about the same as any other individual.

  • 1
    Try to give the good answers you have been, with a citation(s) to support them, (i.e. vs what's more of an opinion). Thanks. Apr 20, 2019 at 11:09
  • Thanks John, I took your advice and expanded my answer. Apr 20, 2019 at 18:41

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