חמץ תאפינה צוה הכתוב שתהיינה חמץ לפי שהם תודה לשם כי חקות קציר שמר לנו וקרבן תודה יבוא על לחם חמץ ואולי אסור החמץ מפני שירמוז אל מדת דין כי נקרא "חמץ" כאשר יקרא היין אשר יקהה חומץ יין וחומץ שכר (במדבר ו ג) והלשון נגזר מלשון מעול וחומץ (תהלים עא ד) כי נגזל מהם טעמם ולא יאכלו וכן כי יתחמץ לבבי (שם עג כא) יכעוס ויאבד טעמו ממנו ובעבור שהקרבנות לרצון לשם הנכבד לא יובאו מן הדברים אשר להם היד החזקה לשנות הטבעים וכן לא יבאו מן הדברים המתוקים לגמרי כגון הדבש רק מן הדברים המזוגים כאשר אמרו בבריאת העולם (ב"ר יב טו) שיתף מדת רחמים במדת הדין ובראו והנה בחג השבועות שהוא יום מתן תורה יביא הקרבן בדין תודה כי הוא יום העצרת והמשכיל יבין וזה סוד מה שאמרו רבותינו (ויק"ר ט ג) כל הקרבנות בטלין וקרבן תודה אינו בטל לעולם וכו' כי בו מצה וחמץ כענין בעולם הבא: THEY SHALL BE BAKED WITH LEAVEN. Scripture commanded that these two loaves be leavened, because they are a thanks-offering to G-d for having kept for us the appointed time of the harvest,303See Jeremiah 5:24. and a thanks-offering comes with cakes of leavened bread.304Above, 7:13 — It is important to note that neither the two leavened loaves of the Festival of Weeks nor the leavened cakes of a thanks-offering were burnt on the altar, as leaven is forbidden to be burnt on the altar. They were merely brought into the Sanctuary Court as part of the offering, but they were eaten by the priests. Perhaps the [usual] prohibition of bringing leavened things as an offering305Ibid., 2:11. is because leaven alludes to the attribute of justice, for it is called chametz (leaven), just as wine which sours is called ‘chometz yayin v’chometz sheichar’ (vinegar of wine or vinegar of strong drink),306Numbers 6:3. the word [chametz] being derived from the expression: the unrighteous ‘v’chomeitz’ (and ruthless man),307Psalms 71:4. for [vinegar of wine and vinegar of strong drink] are drinks whose original taste has been “robbed” from them, and they are therefore not suitable for [normal] drinking. Similarly, for my heart yithchameitz’308Ibid., 73:21. means that it was “in a ferment, and it lost its composure.” Now since the offerings are brought to be acceptable before the Glorious Name,309Deuteronomy 28:58. See Ramban above, 1:9 (towards the end). they are therefore not to be brought from objects which possess a strong power310Alluding to the attribute of stern justice (Tziyoni). to change natural properties of other things [such as leaven], and similarly they are not to be brought from things which are completely sweet311Alluding to everlasting mercy (ibid.). such as honey. [Instead, they are to come] only from things which are blended of different qualities, just as the Rabbis have said with reference to the creation of the world312Bereshith Rabbah 12:15. The language here is that of Rashi on Genesis 1:1. “He combined the attribute of mercy with the attribute of justice, and created the world.” Now on the Festival of Weeks which is the day of the Giving of the Torah [on Mount Sinai], the offering [i.e., the two leavened loaves and the various burnt-offerings, together with their meal-offering which is of unleavened bread, as stated in Verse 18] comes in accordance with the law of the thanks-offering [which was brought with ten leavened cakes and thirty unleavened cakes],313Above, 7:12-13. See Ramban there on Verse 12. for it is the day of the solemn assembly. The student learned in the mysteries of the Cabala will understand. And this is the secret of which our Rabbis have said:314Vayikra Rabbah 9:3. “All offerings are destined to cease [in the World to Come],315This is generally understood as meaning that since there will be no sin in the World to Come, there will not be an occasion to bring the sin-offering etc. See Ramban above, 1:4 that the burnt-offering, too, atones for sin. But for the thanks-offering there will always be an occasion. Ramban, however, alludes to a mystic interpretation, namely, that since the World to Come represents the life of perfect harmony, it is symbolized by the thanks-offering in which the leavened and the unleavened are combined, whereas in the present world justice and mercy are not always combined (see Ramban further, on Verse 24 towards the end, about the nature of the New Year and the Day of Atonement). but the thanks-offering will never cease etc.,” for in it are both unleavened and leavened [cakes], comparable to the World to Come [in which the Divine attributes of justice and mercy will forever be in perfect harmony].