1) THE RULING OF REBBI CHILKIYAH
OPINIONS: The Mishnah states that when a Metzora who is "Mechusar Zeman" slaughters his Korban Asham (see RASHI, DH Rebbi Chilkiyah, and see previous Insight) outside the Beis ha'Mikdash, he is not liable for transgressing the prohibition of Shechutei Chutz. Rebbi Chilkiyah bar Tovi (114b) says that the exemption of a Mechusar Zeman from the prohibition of Shechutei Chutz applies only when he offers his Korban with proper intent (Lishmah). When a Mechusar Zeman offers his Korban outside the Beis ha'Mikdash with improper intent, such as with intent that it should be a different Korban (she'Lo Lishmah), he is liable for the prohibition of Ma'aleh ba'Chutz.
Rav Huna challenges Rebbi Chilkiyah's statement, and he asserts that a Mechusar Zeman who slaughters a Korban with improper intent outside the Beis ha'Mikdash is not liable. Rav Huna argues that there is no precedent for a Korban that is Pasul when offered Lishmah but is valid when offered she'Lo Lishmah. The Gemara here (115a) discusses the argument but comes to no decisive conclusion.
The RAMBAM (Hilchos Ma'aseh ha'Korbanos 18:10) rules that when one slaughters the Asham of a Metzora outside the Beis ha'Mikdash with intent that it is a different Korban, he is liable, since the Korban would be valid if offered inside the Beis ha'Mikdash. Does the Rambam understand that this is the conclusion of the Gemara here, or does he have some other source for his ruling?
(a) The KESEF MISHNEH writes that the Rambam's ruling is based directly on the statement of Rebbi Chilkiyah.
The KEREN ORAH is in doubt about whether the Gemara here is the Rambam's source, because the Rambam omits the most important fact in the case of the Gemara -- that the Metzora's Korban is brought when the Metzora cannot bring his Asham since he is a Mechusar Zeman. Moreover, there is no indication at all in the words of the Rambam that a Korban brought by a Metzora when he is Mechusar Zeman is valid. The Rambam elsewhere (Hilchos Pesulei ha'Mukdashin 15:20) rules that an ordinary Asham Metzora that is offered she'Lo Lishmah does not fulfill the owner's obligation, but it is a valid Korban and may be eaten. It is possible that the Rambam would rule that if the factor of Mechusar Zeman is added to the case, then the Korban Asham of the Metzora indeed would be Pasul, making it not subject to the Isur of Shechutei Chutz. This question is also asked by the SEFAS EMES in Temurah (19b).
(b) The OR SAME'ACH (Hilchos Ma'aseh ha'Korbanos 18:10) concludes that the Rambam's ruling clearly is not based on the view of Rebbi Chilkiyah. Among other proofs, he cites the omission of Mechusar Zeman (as the Keren Orah and Sefas Emes also point out). He writes that the Rambam purposely omits any mention of Mechusar Zeman because he maintains that the Halachah might follow the view of Rav Huna, who rules that a Korban cannot be more valid when it is slaughtered she'Lo Lishmah than when it is slaughtered Lishmah.
The CHAZON ISH (Likutim #5) writes additional proofs that the Rambam does not rule like Rebbi Chilkiyah. One of these proofs is that in the preceding Halachah (18:9), the Rambam rules that a Chatas or Asham of a Metzora that is slaughtered outside the Beis ha'Mikdash is not subject to the Isur of Shechutei Chutz, and the Rambam makes no mention of Rebbi Chilkiyah's qualifying statement that this applies only when the Korban is slaughtered Lishmah. If the Rambam rules like Rebbi Chilkiyah, he certainly should mention this condition. The Chazon Ish concludes that the statement of the Kesef Mishneh needs further clarification ("Tzarich Iyun"). (Y. MONTROSE)
2) THE KORBANOS OFFERED BY THE "NA'AREI BNEI YISRAEL"
OPINIONS: The Gemara relates that Rav Chisda was once reading the verse, "va'Yishlach Es Na'arei Bnei Yisrael" -- "and he sent young men of the people of Yisrael" (Shemos 24:5). Rav Huna interrupted him and told him that Rav Asi had said, "And [then] they stopped." RASHI (DH Amar Lei) says that Rav Asi was referring to the fact that the Bechorim, the firstborn sons, stopped doing the Avodah of the Korbanos, and the responsibility of the Avodah was transferred to the Kohanim. Rashi presents another explanation (DH Hachi Amar) that Rav Asi said, "And stop," meaning that the verse should be read with a pause before the next words, "va'Ya'alu Olos" -- "and they offered Olos." If one were to read the verse continuously, without pausing, then the verse would imply that the Bechorim were the ones who offered the Korbanos, when it was actually the Kohanim who offered the Korbanos. According to this explanation, Rav Asi told Rav Chisda that to read the sentence correctly, he should stop at the word "Yisrael," pause, and then continue with the words "va'Ya'alu Olos," which would imply that the Kohanim (and not the Bechorim) offered the Korbanos.
When were these young men sent and these Korbanos offered? Did this take place before or after Matan Torah?
(a) RASHI (DH Olah she'Hikrivu) explains that these Korbanos were offered before Matan Torah. Rashi on the verse (Shemos 24:4, DH va'Yashkem ba'Boker) writes that this occurred on the fifth of Sivan.
According to Rashi's understanding of the Gemara (especially according to this first explanation, in DH Amar Lei), this Parshah implies that the transfer of responsibility from the Bechorim to the Kohanim occurred even before Matan Torah. This is slightly problematic, because the Torah makes no explicit mention of any such transfer of responsibility before Matan Torah.
(b) The RAMBAN (Shemos 24:3) writes that these Korbanos were brought after Matan Torah.
The wording of the Gemara seems more consistent with the explanation of Rashi. The Gemara later quotes a Beraisa that cites two opinions for the meaning of the verse, "v'Gam ha'Kohanim ha'Nigashim El Hash-m Yiskadashu" -- "and also the Kohanim who approach Hash-m shall separate themselves" (Shemos 19:22). This verse discusses the preparation for Matan Torah. According to Rebbi Yehoshua ben Korchah, this verse refers to the separation of the Bechorim. According to Rebbi, it refers to the separation of Nadav and Avihu. According to Rashi, Rebbi's interpretation of the verse is clear; Rebbi is referring to the fact that Nadav and Avihu already served in the capacity of Kohanim and brought Korbanos before Matan Torah, and therefore they should prepare themselves further for Matan Torah. This is why the verse addresses them as "Kohanim." However, according to the Ramban, who says that the incident of bringing Korbanos did not take place yet, nowhere did any Kohanim perform an Avodah such that this verse should call them "Kohanim." According to the Ramban, what does Rebbi mean when he says that the verse refers to Nadav and Avihu as "Kohanim"? (See also CHAZON ISH, Bava Kama 41:11.)
The HA'EMEK DAVAR has additional difficulty with the Ramban's opinion. The Gemara in Shabbos (88a) says that the Mizbe'ach that was used for these Korbanos was built on the fifth of Sivan, before Matan Torah, as Rashi says. This implies that the Korbanos were offered at that time as well.
The YAD BINYAMIN concludes that according to the Ramban, there indeed is a dispute about whether these Korbanos were brought before or after Matan Torah, and only Rebbi Yehoshua ben Korchah expresses the opinion stated by the Ramban, that this Mizbe'ach was built after Matan Torah. The Ramban himself mentions (in Shemos 24:1) that there is an argument in the Mechilta about when this took place. The Ramban maintains that Rebbi Yehoshua ben Korchah's opinion is the correct one, and therefore he mentions it in his commentary on Chumash. (Y. MONTROSE)