Keritot 5 - Anointing Oil

The anointing oil was made from a combination of olive oil and spices. It was used to consecrate the Kohanim and the articles used in Temple service. The Torah said, " Take the finest fragrances: 500 shekels of distilled myrrh, … one who blends a similar formula, or places it on an unauthorized person, he shall be cut off spiritually from his people ." However, if one prepared the anointing oil to learn how it is to be done, or to present it to the community for their use, he is exempt. Likely it is even allowed in the first place.

Moses made the anointing oil by boiling cinnamon roots in a "hin" of olive oil, then adding spices. Other say that the roots were soaked in water, to preserve the oil. Regardless of the order, all agree that multiple miracles happened with this oil. The amount of oil was only twelve lugin (between one and two gallons), and it sufficed to anoint the Tabernacle, all of its vessels, Aaron and his sons, all the high priests and kings after that, and it still remains intact for the future.

How do we know all this? The Torah said, " This will be for Me an oil of sacred anointment for all your generations ." The word "This" (Zeh, ), has the gematria of 7+5=12, and when God says "for Me," it always means that it will endure forever.

Art: William Brassey Hole - Samuel anointing David in the midst of his brethren