The fifth chapter of Mishna Tractate Zevachim (“Eizehu makoman”) describes precisely where in the Temple each of the Korbanos was offered. Since most of the different sacrifices are mentioned there, these sections of the Mishna were incorporated into the Korbanos.
By saying these words, it is considered to some extent as if one offered that particular sacrifice. On weekdays, some people preface each of the Korbanos with the words, “If I am obligated to bring a Korban ______, this recitation should be considered as if I brought it.” On Shabbos and Yom Tov voluntary sacrifices were not offered, and so this statement is not made (Mishna Berura 1,17).
The offering of a Korban in the Temple was an involved process that required extensive knowledge and training accompanied by pure and lofty intentions. When the average Jew of today merely reads the words of these passages, it may seem like a paltry substitute for the Temple service. In order to bring one’s recitation closer to a true conception of what the Korbanos really mean, halachic authorities recommend that one should learn these sections in depth with the commentaries. Studying the Korbanos in order to achieve a deeper understanding is considered like actually bringing the sacrifices (Biur Halacha 1,5; Mishna Berura 48,1).
Text Copyright © 2008 by Rabbi Daniel Travis and Torah.org