453. Come Hither: The obligation to bring sacrifices from outside Israel to the Temple

…come to the place that God will designate. (Deuteronomy 12:26)

If a person has become obligated in a sacrifice, be it a sin offering, guilt offering, what have you, it is a mitzvah for him to bring his sacrifice to the Temple, even if he lives in a country besides Israel. Mitzvah #440 was a mitzvah to offer sacrifices only at the Temple; our current mitzvah specifically obligates people to bring them to the Temple even from other lands. Why do we need an extra mitzvah to tell us to bring sacrifices from other lands? Because doing so requires much greater effort than bringing sacrifices to the Temple from within Israel.

The reason for this mitzvah is the same as for Mitzvah #440: if you could offer sacrifices elsewhere, the Temple wouldn’t be unique.

The Ramban (Nachmanides) does not count the obligation to bring sacrifices from outside Israel as an independent mitzvah. Rather, he incorporates it under Mitzvah #440.

This mitzvah applies in all times and places. It is discussed in the Talmud in tractate Temurah on page 17b. It is codified in the Mishneh Torah in the eighteenth chapter of Hilchos Maaseh HaKorbanos. This mitzvah is #85 of the 248 positive mitzvos in the Rambam’s Sefer HaMitzvos; it is not listed in the Sefer HaMitzvos HaKatzar of the Chofetz Chaim.