This is a hugely significant piece of legislation. It claims sovereign authority for slaughtering animals to the sacrificial ceremony; no man may kill any animal, unless by proper sacrifice. This outlaws hunting as well as private butchers' shambles and abattoirs; and to emphasise its importance, breach is counted as equivalent to the murder of a human, and the punishment is exile, which in the case of the Mosaic desert meant almost certain death. The problem of the absence of a Temple today has been resolved by insisting that a trained Shechitah Rabbi (called a "shochet" for that reason) be present at the slaughterhouse to ensure conditions as close to those in the Temple as achievable can be obtained.
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