(ויקרא ד, כ) כאשר עשה לפר זה פר כהן משיח החטאת אלו שעירי עבודת כוכבים יכול שאני מרבה אף שעירי הרגלים ושעירי ראשי חדשים תלמוד לומר לו “As he did with the bull” (Leviticus 4:20); this is a reference to the bull for an unwitting sin of the anointed priest, teaching that all of the sprinklings of the blood of this bull are also indispensable. “A sin offering”; these are the goats for an unwitting communal sin of idol worship, teaching that they are offered in the same manner as the bull for an unwitting communal sin, their blood being sprinkled in the Sanctuary and their flesh burned. One might have thought that I should include also the goats of the Festivals and the goats sacrificed on the New Moons, which are communal offerings as well, i.e., that their service should be performed inside the Sanctuary like that of the bull for an unwitting communal sin. Therefore, the verse states: “So shall he do with this” (Leviticus 4:20), which indicates that this service is performed only with this animal and not with the goats of the Festivals or the goats of the New Moons.
ומה ראית לרבות את אלו ולהוציא את אלו אחר שריבה הכתוב ומיעט מרבה אני את אלו שמכפרין על עבירת מצוה ידועה ומוציא אני אלו שאין מכפרין על עבירת מצוה ידועה The Gemara asks: And what did you see to include these goats for an unwitting communal sin of idol worship and to exclude those goats sacrificed on the Festivals and the New Moons? The Gemara answers: After noting that the verse included some offerings and excluded others, one can say: I include these goats for an unwitting communal sin of idol worship, as they atone for the known transgression of a mitzva, i.e., idol worship, and therefore they are similar to the bull for an unwitting communal sin, which is brought for an erroneous ruling of the Sanhedrin with regard to a specific mitzva. And I exclude those goats sacrificed on the Festivals and the New Moons, as they do not atone for the known transgression of a mitzva, but rather they atone for the unwitting defilement of the Temple or its sacrificial foods.
וכפר אף על פי שלא סמך ונסלח אף על פי שלא נתן שירים The baraita resumes its interpretation of the verse. “And the priest shall make atonement”; this teaches that atonement is achieved even if the Elders did not place their hands on the head of the bull as they are commanded to do (see Leviticus 4:15). “And they shall be forgiven”; this teaches that atonement is achieved even if the priest did not place the remainder of the blood on the base of the altar, as is required (see Leviticus 4:7).
ומה ראית לפסול בהזאות ולהכשיר בסמיכה ושירים The Gemara again asks: And as the verse does not specify which aspects of the service are included and which are excluded, what did you see to disqualify the offering in the case of the seven sprinklings; how did you derive that the phrase “And he shall do…as he did” teaches that the seven sprinklings are indispensable? And what did you see to render the offering fit in the absence of placing hands on the head of the offering and pouring out the remainder of the blood on the base of the altar, based on the words “And the priest shall make atonement…and they shall be forgiven”?
אמרת פוסל בהזאות שמעכבות בכל מקום ומכשיר אני בסמיכה ושירים שאין מעכבות בכל מקום The Gemara answers: You should say the following logical argument: I disqualify the offering in the absence of the seven sprinklings, as these seven sprinklings are indispensable in all cases, as will be explained (40a), and I render the offering fit in the absence of placing hands on the head of the offering and in the absence of the pouring of the remainder of the blood onto the base of the altar, as these are not indispensable in all cases, and therefore it is reasonable to conclude that they are not indispensable here either.