The Three Major Categories of Offerings to Yahweh

Types of offerings 1. Tribute Offerings/
Vassal payments

Ex 13:11-16;
Num 3:45-48; 18:13-19
2. Sanctuary endowments
(voluntary offerings)
Ex 25:1-2; 35:4-5, 29; 36:3; Ezra 7:16; 8:28-30
3. Altar-sacrifices
(voluntary and compulsory)
Lev chapters 1-7; 16; 23
Reason Owed for services rendered by God to His people To support God's Sanctuary Liturgical service and covenant continuation
Gifts / Offerer First fruits of animals, sons, and harvest* presented to God by individuals. Any gift for the Sanctuary presented by the people Offerings to God made by individuals or presented by the priests for the whole community
Purpose For the maintenance of the ministerial priesthood Used by the priests for the Sanctuary and liturgical services
  1. To provide for communal and personal expiation of sins.
  2. To reestablish communion with God through a sacred meal.
Categories A. first produce of the harvest
    1. grains
    2. fruits

B. animals from the herd and flock
    1. clean
    2. unclean

C. first-born sons redeemed by a redemption tax
Bloodless offerings
    1. grain
    2. olive oil
    3. wine
    4. money
    5. anything of value
A. Bleeding sacrifices from 5 kinds of animals:
  1. Daily communal Tamid whole burnt offering (2 male lambs)
  2. Sabbath sacrifice (2 male lambs)
  3. Individual gift whole burnt offerings according to wealth: male from herd or flock, or turtle dove and pigeon, or wheat flour
  4. Individual sin offering (animal designated according to wealth/status)
  5. Individual sin of reparation offering (ram and restoration plus 1/5th of the value)
  6. Communion offering (male or female from flock or herd)
  7. Feast day compulsory and communal offerings (designated according to the feast)
B. Bloodless sacrifices:
  1. five classes of wheat flour / unleavened bread offerings
  2. wine
  3. incense
  4. olive oil
  5. salt
Who received Priests and Levites Priests on behalf of the Sanctuary God or shared with God in a sacred meal
Michal Hunt, Copyright © 2009 Agape Bible Study. Permissions All Rights Reserved.

* First fruits of the grain was not consumed on the altar fire (Lev 2:12).  First born sons were redeemed by a redemption tax (Ex 34:19-20; Num 3:46-47); first born animals were God's property.  The first born clean beasts acceptable for sacrifice went to Sanctuary to be offered for communal sacrifices (Dt 15:19-20), and a portion of the animals went to the priests (Num 18:15-18).  Unclean animals like the donkey could be redeemed or they were to have their necks broken (Ex 13:13; Lev 27:26-27; Num 18:15).