Perek Eizehu Mekoman, the fifth perek (=chapter) of Masechet Zevahim, begins on today’s daf (=page). This perek offers an overview of all of the different sacrifices that were brought in the Temple, with the exception of korbanot ha-of – sacrifices brought from fowl – which are discussed in the following chapters, and menahot – meal offerings – that have their own tractates dedicated to those laws.
The sacrifices appear in this perek according to their levels of holiness. First we find the sacrifices that are kodashei kodashim – the holiest of holies – which are prepared in the northern part of the Temple courtyard; this is followed bykodashim kalim – ordinary holy sacrifices – which can be prepared anywhere in the courtyard. The next issue relates to the blood of the sacrifices, where and how they are sprinkled. The closeness of the sprinkling of the blood to the Holy of Holies in the Temple indicates the level of holiness of the sacrifice, and the Mishnah lists those that have a greater number of sprinklings first. Another detail that affects the level of holiness is the amount of time given for the korban to be eaten. The shorter the amount of time is, the holier the korban is. Each of the Mishnayot in the perek follow the same format – first where the sacrifice is slaughtered and prepared, where its blood is sprinkled, what is done with its meat and innards and finally where the remnants of the blood will be poured off.
The entire chapter of Perek Eizehu Mekoman has been inserted into the siddur as an introduction to the daily morning prayer service. The Beit Yosef quotes the Re’ah in offering a number of reasons for this. First of all, it contains a review of virtually all of the sacrifices, and our prayers serve as replacements for the korbanot that can no longer be brought. Furthermore he points to the fact that we do not find any differences of opinion in the entire chapter, which can be understood as indicating that this is a chapter of oral tradition that has come down to us in the same language that it was received by Moshe on Mount Sinai.