"Read Aloud Yourself"

The elders would declare: "Master! High Priest! Please read aloud likewise yourself; perhaps there is something you have forgotten, or some detail you have not learned." This is because one who reads aloud himself is less prone to forget than someone who has merely heard the words from another's lips, and the purpose of this entire process was for the High Priest to be absolutely familiar with these details.

Additionally, the exhortation to "read aloud yourself" was necessary during part of the Second Temple era. For whereas the High Priests of the First Temple were chosen for their wisdom and good standing, this was not always the case during the days of the Second Temple. Many High Priests of that period were corrupt individuals who bought their positions through wealth and influence with the foreign government; some of these men were far from being proper scholars. Thus the elders had grounds to suspect that they were less than adequately familiar with the holy texts and principles of worship.

 

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