Several questions. (1) Would you please comment on how and when the Old Testament animal sacrifices ended. (2) What in Jewish worship, replaced the Aaronic priesthood, and the Temple animal sacrifices? (3) Could you also comment on how that transition was experienced or negotiated within the larger Jewish community?

Answer:

1) At the time of the destruction of the Second Temple, the biblical sacrifical order was terminated — until the time when the Temple will be rebuilt.

2) The Talmud (Berachot 26b) states that today, prayer takes the place of the Temple sacrifices. Just as the sacrifices, the idea of prayer is to encompass the world (the animals of the sacrifices), and to somehow ‘give it back’ to God, in stating that all things depend on Him, and only through Him can our needs be met.

3) This question requires a more lengthy forum than this Q & A site to deal with. I suggest you look up some of the research material that has been conducted concerning Jews of the end of the second Temple era. This was a troubled time for Jews in general (and also brought the birth of Christianity), and the transition, as you can imagine, was not light.

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