The Meaning of Leviticus 3:1 Explained

Leviticus 3:1

KJV: And if his oblation be a sacrifice of peace offering, if he offer it of the herd; whether it be a male or female, he shall offer it without blemish before the LORD.

YLT: And if his offering is a sacrifice of peace-offerings, if out of the herd he is bringing near, whether male or female, a perfect one he doth bring near before Jehovah,

Darby: And if his offering be a sacrifice of peace-offering, if he present it of the herd, whether a male or female, he shall present it without blemish before Jehovah.

ASV: And if his oblation be a sacrifice of peace-offerings; if he offer of the herd, whether male or female, he shall offer it without blemish before Jehovah.

What does Leviticus 3:1 Mean?

Study Notes

The peace-offering. The whole work of Christ in relation to the believer's peace is here in type. He made peace, Colossians 1:20 proclaimed peace, Ephesians 2:17 and is our peace, Ephesians 2:14 .
In Christ God and the sinner meet in peace; God is propitiated, the sinner reconciled-- both alike satisfied with what Christ has done. But all this at the cost of blood and fire. The details speak of fellowship. This brings in prominently the thought of fellowship with God through Christ. Hence the peace-offering is set forth as affording food for the priests Leviticus 7:31-34 . Observe that it is the breast (affections) and shoulders (strength) upon which we as priests 1 Peter 2:9 feed in fellowship with the Father. This it is which makes the peace-offering especially a thank-offering. Leviticus 7:11 ; Leviticus 7:12 .

Context Summary

Leviticus 3:1-17 - Peace-Offerings From The Herd And The Flocks
The Lord Jesus has been set forth in Leviticus 1:1-17 as the burned-offering in relation to God; and in Leviticus 2:1-16, as the meal-offering in relation to man. We are now to regard Him as the peace-offering, to rectify the disturbed relations between God and man. It supplied food for God in the fat devoured by the sacred fire upon the altar, it fed the priests in those parts specially reserved for them, Leviticus 7:33-34; but the worshiper also might participate, Leviticus 7:15. Thus it was a feast that brought into close relations God, priest and people, and it furnished a beautiful typical picture of the truth taught in 1 John 1:3, "Our fellowship is with the Father and with His Son Jesus Christ."
Before sitting at the sacrificial feast the offerer laid his hand on the victim's head, as though to transfer his sins; and we are reminded that we cannot feast on Christ as our Passover unless we have been first pardoned and justified through His death. [source]

Chapter Summary: Leviticus 3

1  The peace offering of the herd
6  whether a sheep
7  whether a lamb
12  or a goat
17  A prohibition to eat fat or blood

What do the individual words in Leviticus 3:1 mean?

And when [is] a sacrifice of a peace offering his offering if of the herd he offers [it] whether male or female without blemish he shall offer it before Yahweh
וְאִם־ זֶ֥בַח שְׁלָמִ֖ים קָרְבָּנ֑וֹ אִ֤ם מִן־ הַבָּקָר֙ ה֣וּא מַקְרִ֔יב אִם־ זָכָר֙ אִם־ נְקֵבָ֔ה תָּמִ֥ים יַקְרִיבֶ֖נּוּ לִפְנֵ֥י יְהוָֽה

וְאִם־  And  when 
Parse: Conjunctive waw, Conjunction
Root: אִם  
Sense: if.
זֶ֥בַח  [is]  a  sacrifice 
Parse: Noun, masculine singular construct
Root: זֶבַח  
Sense: sacrifice.
שְׁלָמִ֖ים  of  a  peace  offering 
Parse: Noun, masculine plural
Root: שֶׁלֶם  
Sense: peace offering, requital, sacrifice for alliance or friendship.
קָרְבָּנ֑וֹ  his  offering 
Parse: Noun, masculine singular construct, third person masculine singular
Root: קָרְבָּן 
Sense: offering, oblation.
הַבָּקָר֙  the  herd 
Parse: Article, Noun, masculine singular
Root: בָּקָר  
Sense: cattle, herd, oxen, ox.
מַקְרִ֔יב  offers  [it] 
Parse: Verb, Hifil, Participle, masculine singular
Root: קָרַב  
Sense: to come near, approach, enter into, draw near.
אִם־  whether 
Parse: Conjunction
Root: אִם  
Sense: if.
זָכָר֙  male 
Parse: Noun, masculine singular
Root: זָכָר  
Sense: male (of humans and animals) adj.
נְקֵבָ֔ה  female 
Parse: Noun, feminine singular
Root: נְקֵבָה  
Sense: female.
תָּמִ֥ים  without  blemish 
Parse: Adjective, masculine singular
Root: תָּמִים  
Sense: complete, whole, entire, sound.
יַקְרִיבֶ֖נּוּ  he  shall  offer  it 
Parse: Verb, Hifil, Imperfect, third person masculine singular, third person masculine singular
Root: קָרַב  
Sense: to come near, approach, enter into, draw near.
לִפְנֵ֥י  before 
Parse: Preposition-l, Noun, common plural construct
Root: לִפְנֵי 
Sense: face.
יְהוָֽה  Yahweh 
Parse: Proper Noun, masculine singular
Root: יהוה 
Sense: the proper name of the one true God.