Sacrifice is the offering of food, objects or the lives of animals to a higher purpose, in particular divine beings, as an act of propitiation or worship. While sacrifice often implies ritual killing, the term offering (Latin oblatio) can be used for bloodless sacrifices of cereal food or artifacts. For offerings of liquids (beverages) by pouring, the term libation is used.
The centrality of sacrifices in Ancient Israel is clear, with much of the Bible, particularly the opening chapters of the book Leviticus, detailing the exact method of bringing sacrifices. Sacrifices were either blood sacrifices (animals) or bloodless offerings (grain and wine). Blood sacrifices were divided into the burnt offerings (Hebrew: עלה קרבנות) in which the whole animal was burnt, guilt offerings (in which part was burnt and part left for the priest) and peace offerings (in which similarly only part of the animal was burnt and the rest eaten in ritually pure conditions). The prophets point out that prayer and sacrifices are only a part of serving God and need to be accompanied by inner morality and goodness.