3. Double Parasha 28 Tazria & 29 Metzora

  • TAZRIAH - G-d told Moses to explain to the people that women who had given birth were to be regarded as ritually impure for a certain period of time. Those who suffered from certain skin diseases were similarly impure. G-d instructed Moses in the laws concerning diagnosing and purifying such individuals.The Lord spoke to Moses saying, “Speak to the Children of Israel regarding the rituals concerning childbirth of a boy.The mother shall be in the state of uncleanness for seven days. Upon the eighth day the flesh of a male baby’s foreskin is to be circumcised. For thirty-three days, the mother shall be in a state of purification and may not be in contact with any holy thing or area. "If a girl is born, the mother remains unclean for two weeks, and for sixty-six days she will be in a state of purification. At the end of this time, she is to make offerings at the Tent of Appointed Meeting.” God then spoke to Moses and to Aaron, saying, “When a person has a swelling, rash, burn, scaly eruption discoloration, or any other kind of distortion of the skin, it shall be reported to Aaron the priest or to one of his sons. The priest shall examine the skin for the contagious disease of leprosy and pronounce the person clean or unclean. “As for the person with leprosy, the person’s clothes shall be torn, his head shall be disheveled and he shall cover over his upper lip and shall call out, 'Unclean, Unclean!' The person shall be unclean as long as the disease is on him. Being unclean, he shall dwell apart. The leper’s dwelling shall be outside the camp.” “The clothes touched by leprosy must also be examined by the priest and declared clean or unclean. The clothes which are capable of being made clean may be washed until they are fully clean, but that which is unclean must be burned in fire." 
  • METZORAH - G-d gave Moses additional instructions about treating skin afflictions, and further explained to him how to cleanse buildings that had been tainted by impurities. G-d then prescribed rituals of sacrifice to purify the body from discharges, particularly menstrual flow and nocturnal emissions.God spoke to Moses, saying, “This is the instruction on how to purify a leper who is healed.When the time is right, a priest shall go outside the camp to the leper's area and confirm if the leper is healed. The priest then shall make a sacrifice with two clean, living birds. One bird is to be killed with ritual while the other is to be set free in open country. “The healed leper must wash his clothes, shave off all his hair and bathe in water. Then he shall be clean enough to enter the camp, but he must remain outside his tent for seven days. On the seventh day, after he shaves off all the hair on his body, scrubs his clothes and washes his body, then he shall be clean. “On the eighth day, the healed leper, two lambs without blemish, and a flour and oil offering shall be presented before the Lord at the entrance to the Tent of Meeting. The priest shall ritually slaughter the lambs and use their blood and the flour and oil to make wave offerings, sin offerings, burnt offerings and guilt offerings for the leper who is to be cleansed. With ritual and ceremony, the priest shall make expiation for him before the Lord. Then he shall be clean.” Then God spoke to Moses and Aaron saying, “When you enter the land of Canaan and I inflict leprosy upon a house there, the owner shall come and tell the priest of the affliction. The priest must examine the house and pronounce the home clean or unclean. The unclean parts must be removed and replaced with clean materials. If the whole house is unclean, the house shall be torn down and its materials shall be taken to an unclean place outside the city. The house is to be rebuilt with clean materials. “The priest will inspect the house again. If the priest pronounces the house clean of leprosy, then the priest is to perform a cleansing ritual for the house. He shall make offerings before the Lord with two clean birds. One is to be slaughtered and the other is to be set free in the open country. The priest thus effects purification for the house and it is clean.” The Lord then spoke to Moses and Aaron and instructed them to tell the people about the laws concerning the emission of bodily fluids. There are times when a man or a woman is "clean" [in a spiritual, not physical sense] and a time when a man or a woman is "unclean." There are specific rituals to transform a man or woman from unclean to clean.

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