Kill a young bull (According to Leviticus 4:13-21):

Kill a young bull and young goat (According to Numbers 15: 24-26)

How can these laws be reconciled?

  • 2
    Perhaps keep reading three more verses in Leviticus 4:22-24? Sep 10, 2021 at 19:55
  • The contrast between the types of offerings(sin offering bullock vs burnt offering bullock + sin offering goat) may imply two different situations, the second where an individual was involved(cf. Num 15:27-29).
    – user21676
    Sep 10, 2021 at 20:04

1 Answer 1


Leviticus 4:13-21 and Numbers 15:24-26 describe two different situations.

A sin of omission is a sin committed because of neglecting to do what is right. They are good works left undone. While a sin of commission is typically observable and often more dramatic (e.g. adultery, stealing).

A burnt offering was both food for the god and a thanksgiving for the god's continued blessing. A sin offering was made to cover up the sin.

Leviticus 4:

13“ ‘If the whole Israelite community sins unintentionally and does what is forbidden in any of the Lord’s commands,

This was a sin of commission.

even though the community is unaware of the matter, when they realize their guilt 14and the sin they committed becomes known, the assembly must bring a young bull as a sin offering and present it before the tent of meeting.

This was a sin offering to cover up the sin of commission.

On the other hand, Numbers 15:

22“ ‘Now if you as a community unintentionally fail to keep any of these commands the Lord gave Moses—

Unlike the case in Leviticus, this was a sin of omission.

24 and if this is done unintentionally without the community being aware of it, then the whole community is to offer a young bull for a burnt offering

Unlike the case in Leviticus, the bull was for a burnt offering.

as an aroma pleasing to the Lord, along with its prescribed grain offering and drink offering, and a male goat for a sin offering.

Add a goat for a sin offering in this case of a sin of omission.

What should a congregation do if it unintentionally sins?

If it was a sin of commission, apply Leviticus 4:13.
If it was a sin of omission, apply Numbers 15:15.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.