#11: Boiling the Paschal Sacrifice, or, Inner-Biblical Harmonistic Exegesis

Bekah and Benj discuss the apparent tension between the methods of cooking the Passover sacrifice (and the type of sacrifice) prescribed in Exodus 12 and Deuteronomy 16. We address the phenomenon of inner-biblical exegesis, particularly the Chronicler’s harmonistic exegesis of these two passages in 2 Chronicles 35. Along the way, we discuss why “someone is wrong on the internet” and how to solve this problem.

The texts in question:

  • “They shall eat the flesh that same night, roasted with fire (צלי־אשׁ), and they shall eat it with unleavened bread and bitter herbs. Do not eat any of it raw or boiled at all with water (בשׁל מבשׁל במים), but rather roasted with fire (כי אם־צלי אשׁ), both its head and its legs along with its entrails” (Exod 12:8-9).
  • “You shall boil (ובשׁלת) and eat it in the place which the LORD your God chooses” (Deut 16:7a).
  • The Chronicler has harmonized the two traditions by specifying that it was “boiled with fire” (ויבשׁלו הפסח באשׁ כמשׁפט).

Further Reading:

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