Menahot, Chapter Four, Mishnah Four


Mishnah Four

1)      The [absence of the] daily offerings (tamidin) does not invalidate the additional offerings (musafin), neither does [the absence of] the additional offerings invalidate the daily offerings, neither does the absence of [one of the] additional offerings invalidate the other additional offerings.

2)      Even though they did not offer the [tamid] lamb in the morning they must offer [the lamb] towards evening.

3)      Rabbi Shimon said: When is this so? Only when they had acted under constraint or in error, but if they acted deliberately and did not offer the lamb in the morning they may not offer [the lamb] towards evening.

4)      If they did not burn the incense in the morning they burn it towards evening.

5)      Rabbi Shimon said: all of it was burned towards evening.

6)      For the golden altar was dedicated only by the incense of spices.

a)      And the altar for the olah by the daily offering of the morning,

b)      And the table only by the showbread on Shabbat,

c)      And the menorah only by [the kindling of] seven lamps towards evening.



Section one: Every day there are two daily offerings, called the “tamidin”—one in the morning and one towards evening. On holidays and Shabbat there are additional offerings, called “musafin” (this is where the word musaf of the musaf service comes from). These sacrifices do not affect one another, so if one of them is not offered for whatever reason, the others can still be offered validly.

Section two: The mishnah now deals with the two tamid offerings, and whether the absence of the first of them invalidates the other. According to the first opinion, it does not, and therefore if they don’t offer the lamb of the tamid in the morning, they can still offer the lamb towards evening.

Section three: Rabbi Shimon qualifies the previous opinion. If they didn’t offer the tamid in the morning because they could not, or due to some error, then they can offer the tamid in the evening. However, if they intentionally don’t offer it in the morning, then they are penalized and they can’t offer the other lamb in the evening.

Section four: Incense was burned on the golden altar twice a day, once in the morning and once in the evening (see Exodus 30:7-8). If they did not burn it in the morning, they may still offer burn the evening incense. This opinion is a continuation of the opinion found in section two above.

Section five: Rabbi Shimon says that if they didn’t burn the incense in the morning, in the evening they should burn all of the incense, both the evening incense and the incense that should have been burned in the morning.

Section six: This section is actually the explanation for the opinion of the sages found in section four. The reason that the evening incense must be offered even if the morning incense was not offered is that the dedication of the altar was done by burning the evening incense.

When it comes to the altar for the olah, meaning the altar that stood in the courtyard, it was dedicated by the morning tamid offering. Thus, if the altar had not yet been dedicated, and the morning tamid was not offered on it, they could not offer on it the evening tamid.

The mishnah also notes that the dedication of the table that stood in the courtyard was done by placing on it the Sabbath showbread.

The menorah was dedicated when it was lit in the evening.