XL. (220) And there are two days only during which God permits the nation to make use of the sacrifice for preservation, enjoining them to carve nothing of it till the third day, on many accounts, first of all, because all the things which are ever placed on the sacred table, ought to be made use of in due season, while the users take care that they shall suffer no deterioration from the lapse of time; but the nature of meat that has been kept is very apt to become putrid, even though it may have been seasoned in the cooking; (221) secondly, because it is fitting that the sacrifices should not be stored up for food, but should be openly exposed, so as to afford a meal to all who are in need of it, for the sacrifice when once placed on the altar, is no longer the property of the person who has offered it, but belongs to that Being to whom the victim is sacrificed, who, being a beneficent and bounteous God, makes the whole company of those who offer the sacrifice, partakers at the altar and messmates, only admonishing them not to look upon it as their own feast, for they are but stewards of the feast, and not the entertainers; and the entertainer is the man to whom all the preparation belongs, which it is not lawful to conceal while preferring parsimony and illiberal meanness to humanity which is a noble virtue. (222) Lastly, this command was given because it so happens that the sacrifice for preservation is offered up for two things, the soul and the body, to each of which the lawgiver has assigned one day for feasting on the meats, for it was becoming that a number of days should be allotted for this purpose equal to the number of those parts in us which were designed to be sacred; so that in the first day we should, together with our eating of the food, receive a recollection of the salvation of our souls; and on the second day be reminded of the sound health of our bodies. (223) And since there is no third object which is naturally appointed as one that should receive preservation, he has, with all possible strictness, forbidden the use of those meats being reserved to the third day, commanding that if it should so happen that, out of ignorance or forgetfulness, any portion was left, it should be consumed with fire; and he declares that the man who has merely tasted of it is blameable, saying to him, “Though thinking that you were sacrificing, O foolish man, you have not sacrificed; I have not accepted the unholy, unconsecrated, profane, unclean meats which you have roasted, O gluttonous man; never, even in a dream, having a proper idea of sacrifice.”

XLI. (224) To this species of sacrifice for preservation that other sacrifice also belongs, which is called the sacrifice of praise, and which rests on the following Principle.{27}{#le 19:1.} The man who has never fallen into any unexpected disaster whatever, neither as to his body nor as to his external circumstances, but who has passed a tranquil and peaceful life, living in happiness and prosperity, being free from all calamity and all mishap, steering through the long voyage of life in calmness and serenity of circumstances, good fortune always blowing upon the stern of his vessel, is, of necessity, bound to requite God, who has been the pilot of his voyage, who has bestowed upon him untroubled salvation and unalloyed benefits, and, in short, all sorts of blessings unmingled with any evil, with hymns, and songs, an prayers, and also with sacrifices, and all other imaginable tokens of gratitude in a holy manner; all which things taken together have received the one comprehensive name of praise. (225) This sacrifice the lawgiver has not commanded to be spread like the one before mentioned over two days, {28}{#le 7:5.} but he has confined it to one only, in order that these men, who meet with ready benefits freely poured upon them, may offer up their requital freely and without any delay.