Note the contradiction
in the following two verses, discussing
the requirement to bring offerings on the Passover Festival:
- Verse Lv23-08 states
- And ye shall bring an offering made by
fire unto HaShem
- Verse Nu28-27 states
- but ye shall bring an offering made by fire,
an elevation-offering unto HaShem:
- two young bullocks,
- one ram,
- seven he-lambs of the first year.
We see the contradiction,
indicated by the presence of an extra bullet in the second
citation providing a list of animals to be brought. Which is it?
Is there an obligation of bringing 2 oxen, 1 ram
and 7 lambs, or is the obligation to simply bring [any] offering?
Rashi resolves this contradiction using
the broad-literal method:
In other words
You must bring an offering under all circumstances
- If possible it is preferred to bring 2 oxen, 1 ram,
and 7 lambs.
So if e.g. you only have 7 lambs and 1 ram but no oxen then
you bring the 7 lambs and 1 ram without the oxen.
- the 2-oxen verse indicates the preferred obligation.
- The Leviticus verse indicates the if-you-don't have obligation.
Rashi literally says as follows:
The 7 lambs, 1 ram and 2 oxen are independent requirements.
If you don't have all you bring whatever you do have.
What I have added to Rashi is the derivation of this exegesis
from the contradiction method. Precisely because
one verse gives details - bring 2 oxen, 1 ram, 7 lambs -
and the other verse gives generality - bring - therefore, I infer that
the details are obligatory and the general bring applies
when all species are not there.
The astute reader should note the added word,
elevation offering in the alignment of
the above two verses:
bring an offering of fire unto Hashem
bring an offering of fire,
an elevation offering, unto Hashem.
I know of no Rashi or Midrashic analysis
explaining this alignment anomaly. Typically,
when studying Rashi the use of proper methodology exposes
other similar stylistic requirements requiring