“Then the Priests, the sons of Levi, shall approach” (Dt.21:5).
inferring from what is stated—
“And he shall serve in the name of HASHEM his God” (Dt.18:7)—
I only know that
unblemished [Priests] may conduct the rite.
How do I know that
disfigured Priests are qualified as well?2
The Teaching states:
“The sons of Levi” (Dt.21:5)—
[whether unblemished or disfigured].
“For HASHEM your God has chosen from among them to serve Him
and to give blessing in His Name” (Dt.21:5)—
the conjoining of to serve and to bless implies that
the blessing of the Priest is invalid if he is disfigured.
“To serve Him and to give blessing in His Name” (Dt.21:5)—
Let us draw out the comparative implications:
Just as serving requires standing,
blessing also requires standing.
“And their instructions (`al pihem) shall resolve every dispute and the status of every plague-sign (Dt.21:5)—
the verse suggests a comparison
between civil disputes and plague-signs:
Just as plague-signs are examined during the day,
so, too, civil disputes are judged during the day;
just as civil disputes are not
judged by relatives,
so, too, plague-signs are not
examined by relatives.
Or [may we argue that]:
Just as civil disputes are
judged by courts of three,
so, too, the status of plague-signs is
examined by three Priests?
Now, this is only reasonable!
If a matter affecting one’s wealth
is judged by three [judges],
shouldn’t a matter affecting one’s body
be judged by three [Priests]?
[Nevertheless,] the Teaching states:
“Now, when there appears, on the skin of his flesh. . . something akin to an unclean eruption, then he should be brought before Aaron the Priest,
or one of his priestly sons” (Lv.13:2)—
This teaches you that only one Priest need examine plague-signs.