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Watson's Biblical & Theological Dictionary


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God forbade the Hebrews to eat the fat of beasts: "All the fat is the Lord's. It shall be a perpetual statute for your generations, throughout all your dwellings, that ye eat neither fat nor blood," Leviticus 3:17 . Some interpreters understand these words literally, and suppose fat as well as blood to be forbidden. Josephus says, Moses forbids only the fat of oxen, goats, sheep, and their species. This agrees with Leviticus 7:23 : "Ye shall eat no manner of fat, of ox, or of sheep, or of goat." This is observed by the modern Jews, who think that the fat of other sorts of clean creatures is allowed them, even that of beasts which have died of themselves, conformably to

Leviticus 7:24 : "And the fat of the beast that dieth of itself, and the fat of that which is torn with beasts, may be used in any other use; but ye shall in nowise eat of it." Others maintain that the law which forbids the use of fat, should be restrained to fat separated from the flesh, such as that which covers the kidneys and the intestines: and this only in the case of its being offered in sacrifice. This is confirmed by Leviticus 7:25 : "Whosoever eateth of the fat of the beast of which men offer an offering made by fire unto the Lord, even the soul that eateth it shall be cut off from his people." In the Hebrew style, fat signifies not only that of beasts, but also the richer or prime part of other things: "He should have fed them with the finest" (in Hebrew the fat) "of the wheat." Fat denotes abundance of good things: "I will satiate the souls of the priests with fatness," Jeremiah 31:14 . "My soul shall be satisfied with marrow and fatness," Psalms 63:5 . The fat of the earth implies its fruitfulness: "God give thee of the dew of heaven, and the fatness of the earth, and plenty of corn and wine," Genesis 27:28 .

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Bibliography Information
Watson, Richard. Entry for 'Fat'. Richard Watson's Biblical & Theological Dictionary. 1831-2.

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Saturday, June 6th, 2020
the Week of Proper 4 / Ordinary 9
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