Yours, Etc.: Origins and Uses of 8 Sign-Offs
Heb. terumah, (Ex. 29:27) means simply an offering, a present, including all the offerings made by the Israelites as a present. This Hebrew word is frequently employed. Some of the rabbis attach to the word the meaning of elevation, and refer it to the heave offering, which consisted in presenting the offering by a motion up and down, distinguished from the wave offering, which consisted in a repeated movement in a horizontal direction, a "wave offering to the Lord as ruler of earth, a heave offering to the Lord as ruler of heaven." The right shoulder, which fell to the priests in presenting thank offerings, was called the heave shoulder (Lev. 7:34; Num. 6:20). The first fruits offered in harvest-time (Num. 15:20, 21) were heave offerings.