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Easton's Bible Dictionary

 

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First-born, Redemption of
        From the beginning the office of the priesthood in each family
        belonged to the eldest son. But when the extensive plan of
        sacrificial worship was introduced, requiring a company of men
        to be exclusively devoted to this ministry, the primitive office
        of the first-born was superseded by that of the Levites (Num.
        3:11-13), and it was ordained that the first-born of man and of
        unclean animals should henceforth be redeemed (18:15).
        The laws concerning this redemption of the first-born of man
        are recorded in Ex. 13:12-15; 22:29; 34:20; Num. 3:45; 8:17;
        18:16; Lev. 12:2, 4.
        The first-born male of every clean animal was to be given up
        to the priest for sacrifice (Deut. 12:6; Ex. 13:12; 34:20; Num.
        18:15-17).
        But the first-born of unclean animals was either to be
        redeemed or sold and the price given to the priest (Lev.
        27:11-13, 27). The first-born of an ass, if not redeemed, was to
        be put to death (Ex. 13:13; 34:20).

Bibliography Information
Easton, Matthew George. M.A., D.D., "Biblical Meaning for 'First-born, Redemption of' Eastons Bible Dictionary".
bible-history.com - Eastons; 1897.

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