For some other sacrifices, there was a one day ultimatum e.g

  • the Passover (Exo 12:10)

  • the peace offerings for thanksgiving (Lev 7:15)

Leviticus 19:5-7 (NKJV)

And if you offer a sacrifice of a peace offering to the LORD, you shall offer it of your own free will. 'It shall be eaten the same day you offer it, and on the next day. And if any remains until the third day, it shall be burned in the fire.
'And if it is eaten at all on the third day, it is an abomination. It shall not be accepted.

Why is there a three day ultimatum for the consumption of this particular sacrifice?

5 Answers 5


Perhaps the reason is prevention of food poisoning.

Images are from Scripture4all.org - Interlinear ISA-2 program.

enter image description here

Strong's H6292 pigguwl pig-gool'

or piggul {pig-gool'};

from an unused root meaning to stink; properly, fetid, i.e. (figuratively) unclean (ceremonially).

KJV: abominable(-tion, thing).

enter image description here

The same explanation is given here, except with more detail. Seems the last part of the verse might make more sense, "depravity-of~her you~shall-bear."

As for burning leftovers after one day:

Exo. 12:10 - And ye shall let nothing(3808) of(4480) it remain(3498) until(5704) the morning;(1242) and that which remaineth(3498) of(4480) it until(5704) the morning(1242) ye shall burn(8313) with fire.(784)

Exo. 12:11 - And thus(3602) shall ye eat(398) it; your loins(4975) girded,(2296) your shoes(5275) on your feet,(7272) and your staff(4731) in your hand;(3027) and ye shall eat(398) it in haste:(2649) it(1931) the LORD's(3068) passover.(6453)

They had to be ready to head out of Egypt on a moment's notice, so holy food was to be disposed of properly.

I've read in several places where the Hebrews were the first to establish hygiene practices (physical and spiritual) to prevent disease - God taught them. (And it isn't as if they had refrigeration.)

Not saying that there couldn't be more to the story, but I simply don't feel 'the pull' to look further than the simplest explanation in this case. Maybe someone else will find something deeper.

Note: I do find it interesting that it is 'her depravity' that causes the food to spoil.... For that juicy morsel, I thank you for the question.

  • This is not a satisfactory answer. Some other sacrifices had to be eaten the same day. Any remnants were to be burned with fire. This is the case with the peace offering for Thanksgiving. But if it is a freewill peace offering, it can be eaten the next day but all remnants were to be burnt on the third day. It has little to do with poisoning and more to do with symbolism. The types and shadows that characterize the Law.
    – user20490
    Commented Dec 23, 2017 at 3:02
  • @user20490 maybe this can be true adding to the symbolism. I don't know if your a Christian, but if you are you can apply this to the death and ressurection. Psalm 16 10 said the LORD didn't allow his Holy one to see corruption. And Leviticus 19:6 Can be showing that would be the 3rd day.
    – diego b
    Commented Apr 4, 2018 at 18:29

I can see two possible symbolisms but have no references to back them up.

  1. It foreshadows the 3 days that jesus was in the grave. Jesus is considered the peace offering in that he died to make peace between god and man.
  2. If the peace offering does foreshadow jesus then the communion is interesting in that we are told to continue eating it. This could imply that the law version is limited but the sacrifice of jesus is not. A way of contrasting the two.

Both of my points are speculative.

  • Cool answer bro. We are happy to have you on this site.
    – user20490
    Commented Dec 21, 2018 at 6:50

The third day, On cross Jesus cried with a loud voice and said that Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit: and having said thus, he gave up the ghost. As we Christians accept the TRUTH that we all have body, soul and spirit.
Psalm 16:10 For you will not abandon my soul to Sheol, or let your holy one see corruption. 11 You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.
Jesus body died and His soul (Son Of Man) too died on 2nd day, on 3rd day His spirit too will die if not resurrected by Father God. But as we all believe Jesus was resurrected (His spirit was) on 3rd day, so His spirit not died and got the soul of Son of God. If the spirit of Jesus has not been risen, the one and only reason would have been Jesus is corrupted, but He has risen. That's why if the meat was consumed on 3rd day, we actually not eating the flesh of Jesus but something else which is corrupted.

In the new testament age, how it applies, first two days, our work (repentance) and faith and the third day is Grace of Jesus that can't be taken into our credit that is what consuming the meat on 3rd day, as our work and faith can be taken into our credit, GRACE OF JESUS can't be taken into our credit.
The bottom line is when our peace with God is restored, we shall never forget that because of grace of Jesus only it happened, of course my work(body) and faith(soul) too played a part. Ephesians 2:9 - Not because of works [not the fulfillment of the Law’s demands], lest any man should boast. [It is not the result of what anyone can possibly do, so no one can pride himself in it or take glory to himself.]

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    – agarza
    Commented Jul 15, 2021 at 3:04

My guess is that this is a practical allowance. Remember that this sacrifice is the only one where part is given to God (the fat is burned), part is given to the Priests and their family, and part is eaten by the offerer and his family.

Thus it is truly about fellowship, which means its going to go into the night (when everyone stops working and can spend time together in fellowship) and so if the animal is slaughtered during the daytime, it will be eaten the next day (The border between days is sunset).

This is similar to the other big family meal, passover, where you are supposed to slaughter it right at twilight and then eat on the day that just started, but each family slaughters the passover lamb at home, so you can time it.

But for the peace offering, you need to go to the Temple, slaughter it there in front of the priest, then the priest has to remove the fat and burn it, etc. You are not going to be able to time it to happen right at twilight so it makes sense to do the Temple portion during the day and then have the family meal at night. That requires an allowance of 2 days.


to have peace with God, you must be forgiven,forgiveness of self and of others, if the sacrifice was eaten on the third day, you in essence are saying your Savior is still in the tomb and not risen, therefore you are not forgiven unless He is risen, so this is about your faith and trust, and without faith it is impossible to please God...

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    Commented Aug 19, 2023 at 0:11
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