Kenneth Cohen

Prayers and Sacrifices

There is a strong connection between the sacrifices and the Halachot connected with prayers. The Talmud in Brachot simply says that תפילה במקום קרבן, that prayers take the place of sacrifices.

We also learn from the Korbanot that we are to pray in the morning and evening, similar to when the daily sacrifices were offered. There is an additional sacrifice called, “Musaf” that corresponds to the additional prayer called “Musaf,” recited on Rosh Chodesh and holidays.

There is another term related to sacrifices, that applies to prayers. The rule is, עבר יומו בטל קרבנו, that if the day passes, the sacrifice is nullified. This refers to the specific details connected to a time limit of when the sacrifice must be eaten or burned on the altar. Once the day passes, it is too late to have fulfilled our obligation with that sacrifice.

The Rabbis devised a similar system with what is referred to as תשלומים, or make up time. If someone forgets to pray a certain prayer, he can make it up with the next prayer. For example, if one did not recite the Ma’ariv prayer, he can make it up with two Shmone Esrei’s in Shacharit. However, if he did not make it up in Shacharit, his time has passed, and he cannot make it up at Mincha.

It is interesting that the verse in Kohelet that says, מעות לא יוכל לתקון, “that which is crooked cannot be made straight,” is interpreted to this idea of Tashlumim. If you didn’t do the make up in the following prayer, you can no longer make it straight.

There is a very close connection between the rules of prayers and sacrifices.

About the Author
Rabbi Cohen has been a Torah instructor at Machon Meir, Jerusalem, for over twenty years while also teaching a Talmud class in the Shtieblach of Old Katamon. Before coming to Israel, he was the founding rabbi of Young Israel of Century City, Los Angeles. He recently published a series of Hebrew language-learning apps, which are available at
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