Through My Bible Yr 01 – February 11
Leviticus 21 – 22
Protecting the Holiness of the Priests
1 The Lord told Moses to speak to the priests, the sons of Aaron, and tell them this:
No one shall make himself unclean for a dead person among his people, 2 except for his closest relatives. He may do it for his mother, his father, his son, his daughter, or his brother, 3 and also for his virgin sister, who is close to him because she does not have a husband—for her he may make himself unclean. 4 But he shall not make himself unclean for his relatives by marriage and so defile himself.
5 The priests shall not cut a bald patch on to their heads or cut off the edges of their beards or gash their bodies. 6 They shall be holy to their God, and they shall not defile the name of their God. Because they present offerings made by fire,  the food of their God, they are to be set apart as holy.
7 They shall not marry a woman who has been a prostitute or is defiled. Neither shall they marry a woman divorced from her husband, for each priest is holy to his God. 8 So you shall treat him as holy. Since he presents the food of your God, he shall be holy to you, for I, the Lord, who sets you apart as holy, am holy.
9 When the daughter of a man who is a priest defiles herself through prostitution, she is defiling her father. She shall be burned in fire.
10 The high priest, who is greater than his brothers, on whose head the anointing oil has been poured and who has been ordained to wear the holy garments, shall not dishevel his hair nor tear his garments. 11 He shall not enter any place where there is a dead person. He shall not make himself unclean even for his father or his mother. 12 He shall not leave the sanctuary, so that he will not defile the sanctuary of his God, for the mark of consecration with the anointing oil of his God is upon him. I am the Lord.
13 The high priest shall marry a woman who is a virgin. 14 A widow or a divorcée or a woman defiled because of prostitution—these he shall not marry. Instead, he shall take a virgin from his own people as a wife, 15 so that he does not defile his offspring among his people, for I am the Lord, who sets him apart as holy.
Disqualification From Priestly Service
16 The Lord told Moses 17 to tell Aaron this:
Any man from your offspring throughout their generations who has a defect may not approach to present the food of his God. 18 Indeed, any man who has a defect shall not approach—a man who is blind or lame, or who has a limb that is too short or too long, 19 or a man who has a crippled foot or a crippled hand, 20 or who is deformed or abnormally small, or who has a growth in his eye, or a festering boil, or some other disfiguring skin condition,  or a damaged testicle. 21 Any man among the offspring of Aaron the priest who has a defect shall not draw near to present the gifts of the Lord. He has a defect, so he shall not draw near to present the food of his God.
22 But he may eat the food of his God from the most holy things and from the holy things. 23 Nevertheless, he shall not go in front of the veil and shall not approach the altar because he has a defect, so that he does not defile my holy things, for I am the Lord, who sets them apart as holy.
24 So Moses spoke to Aaron and his sons and to all the Israelites.
Eating Holy Food
1 The Lord spoke to Moses: 2 “Tell Aaron and his sons to be very careful with the holy things of the people of Israel, which they consecrate to me, so that they may not defile my holy name. I am the Lord. 3 Tell them these things.”
In future generations, if any man among all your descendants, while he is in a state of uncleanness, approaches the holy things, which the Israelites consecrate to the Lord, that person is to be cut off from my presence. I am the Lord.
4 Any man of Aaron’s descendants who has an impure skin disease or a bodily discharge shall not eat any of the holy things until he is clean.
Any man who touches anything made unclean by a dead person, or any man from whom an emission of semen goes out, 5 or any man who touches any swarming creature that makes him unclean, or who touches any human being who makes him unclean, whatever his uncleanness might be— 6 that person who touches any of these things will be unclean until sunset and shall not eat any of the holy things unless he has washed his body with water. 7 When the sun has gone down, he will be clean. After that he may eat from the holy things, for it is his food. 8 But he shall not eat anything that has died naturally or been torn by wild animals, and so become unclean by it. I am the Lord.
9 Aaron’s descendants shall therefore keep watch for me, so that they do not become responsible for sin on account of uncleanness and die for it because they have defiled something holy. I am the Lord, who sets them apart as holy.
10 No person who is not a member of a priest’s family may eat anything holy. No guest or employee of a priest may eat anything holy. 11 But if a priest purchases anyone with his money, that person may eat from it, and those who are born into his household may eat from his food. 12 If a priest’s daughter has a husband who is not a priest, she may not eat any of the holy things that have been donated as an elevated offering. 13 But if a priest’s daughter is widowed or divorced and she has no children and returns to her father’s house as in her youth, she may eat of her father’s food. No person who is not a member of a priest’s family may eat of it.
14 If anyone eats a holy thing unintentionally, he shall add one fifth of its value to it and give the holy thing to the priest.
15 The priests shall not defile the holy things that the Israelites donate as an elevated offering to the Lord 16 by letting other people eat them and so make that person incur the penalty of a restitution offering for the holy things, because I am the Lord, who sets them apart as holy.
Acceptable Offerings for the Israelites
17 The Lord told Moses 18 to speak to Aaron and his sons and the whole people of Israel and tell them this:
Whenever anyone of the house of Israel or any of the aliens residing in Israel presents their offerings—whether it is any kind of offering to fulfill a vow or any kind of voluntary  offering, which may be presented to the Lord as a burnt offering— 19 in order for the offering to be accepted it must be a male without blemish, from the cattle or the sheep or the goats. 20 You shall not present any animal with a defect, because it will not be accepted on your behalf.
21 If anyone presents a sacrifice as a fellowship offering to the Lord from the herd or the flock to fulfill a vow or as a voluntary offering, it must be without blemish for it to be accepted on your behalf. There must not be any defect in it. 22 Any animal that is blind, injured, or maimed, with a growth in the eye, a festering boil, or sores—these you shall not present to the Lord. You shall not put any of these on the altar as an offering made by fire to the Lord. 23 You may, however, make a voluntary offering with a head of cattle or with a sheep or goat that has a long or short leg, but it will not be accepted as an offering to fulfill a vow. 24 You shall not present to the Lord any animal that has its testicles bruised or crushed or torn out or cut off. You shall not do this in your land. 25 You shall not present any of these animals from a foreigner as the food of your God. Because they are flawed, with a defect in them, they will not be accepted on your behalf.
26 Then the Lord told Moses this:
27 When a calf or a sheep or a goat is born, it shall remain with its mother for seven days. From the eighth day on, it will be acceptable as an offering that is a gift made by fire to the Lord. 28 But you shall not slaughter a cow or a ewe with her young on the same day.
29 When you offer a sacrifice of thanksgiving to the Lord, you shall sacrifice it so that you will be accepted. 30 It must be eaten on the same day. You shall not leave any of it over until the morning. I am the Lord.
31 So you shall keep my commandments by doing them. I am the Lord. 32 Therefore you shall not defile my holy name, so that I may be honored as holy among the Israelites. I am the Lord, who sets you apart as holy, 33 who brought you out of the land of Egypt to be your God. I am the Lord.
- Leviticus 21:6 Or food offerings. Here the Hebrew text has an additional word that specifies that this is a food offering.
- Leviticus 21:20 The meaning of this and some of the other terms in this section is uncertain.
- Leviticus 22:18 Or freewill
The Holy Bible, Evangelical Heritage Version®, EHV®, © 2019 Wartburg Project, Inc. All rights reserved.