Regulations concerning Priests

21 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Speak to the priests, the sons of Aaron, and say to them:

(A)No one shall defile himself for a dead person among his people, (B)except for his relatives who are nearest to him, his mother and his father and his son and his daughter and his brother, also for his virgin sister, who is near to him [a]because she has had no husband; for her he may defile himself. He shall not defile himself as a [b]relative by marriage among his people, and so profane himself. (C)They shall not make any baldness on their heads, (D)nor shave off the edges of their beards, (E)nor make any cuts in their flesh. They shall be holy to their God and (F)not profane the name of their God, for they present the offerings by fire [c]to the Lord, (G)the food of their God; so they shall be holy. (H)They shall not take a woman who is profaned by harlotry, nor shall they take a woman divorced from her husband; for he is holy to his God. You shall consecrate him, therefore, for he offers (I)the food of your God; he shall be holy to you; for I the Lord, who sanctifies you, am holy. (J)Also the daughter of any priest, if she profanes herself by harlotry, she profanes her father; she shall be burned with fire.

10 ‘The priest who is the highest among his brothers, on whose head the anointing oil has been poured and [d]who has been consecrated to wear the garments, (K)shall not [e]uncover his head nor tear his clothes; 11 (L)nor shall he approach any dead person, nor defile himself even for his father or his mother; 12 (M)nor shall he go out of the sanctuary nor profane the sanctuary of his God, for (N)the consecration of the anointing oil of his God is on him; I am the Lord. 13 He shall take a wife in her virginity. 14 (O)A widow, or a divorced woman, or one who is profaned by harlotry, these he may not take; but rather he is to [f]marry a virgin of his own people, 15 so that he will not profane his [g]offspring among his people; for I am the Lord who sanctifies him.’”

16 Then the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, 17 “Speak to Aaron, saying, ‘No man of your [h]offspring throughout their generations who has a defect shall approach to offer the (P)food of his God. 18 (Q)For no one who has a defect shall approach: a blind man, or a lame man, or he who has a [i](R)disfigured face, or any deformed limb, 19 or a man who has a broken foot or broken hand, 20 or a hunchback or a dwarf, or one who has a [j]defect in his eye or eczema or scabs or (S)crushed testicles. 21 No man among the [k]descendants of Aaron the priest who has a defect is to come near to offer the Lord’s offerings by fire; since he has a defect, he shall not come near to offer (T)the food of his God. 22 He may eat (U)the food of his God, both of the most holy and of the holy, 23 only he shall not go in to the veil or come near the altar because he has a defect, so that he will not profane My sanctuaries. For I am the Lord who sanctifies them.’” 24 So Moses spoke to Aaron and to his sons and to all the sons of Israel.

Footnotes

  1. Leviticus 21:3 Or whom no man has had
  2. Leviticus 21:4 Lit husband among
  3. Leviticus 21:6 Lit of
  4. Leviticus 21:10 Lit whose hand has been filled
  5. Leviticus 21:10 Lit unbind
  6. Leviticus 21:14 Lit take as wife
  7. Leviticus 21:15 Lit seed
  8. Leviticus 21:17 Lit seed
  9. Leviticus 21:18 Lit slit
  10. Leviticus 21:20 Lit obscurity
  11. Leviticus 21:21 Lit seed

Rules for Priests

21 The Lord said to Moses, “Speak to the priests, the sons of Aaron,(A) and say to them: ‘A priest must not make himself ceremonially unclean(B) for any of his people who die,(C) except for a close relative, such as his mother or father,(D) his son or daughter, his brother, or an unmarried sister who is dependent on him since she has no husband—for her he may make himself unclean.(E) He must not make himself unclean for people related to him by marriage,[a] and so defile himself.

“‘Priests must not shave(F) their heads or shave off the edges of their beards(G) or cut their bodies.(H) They must be holy to their God(I) and must not profane the name of their God.(J) Because they present the food offerings to the Lord,(K) the food of their God,(L) they are to be holy.(M)

“‘They must not marry women defiled by prostitution or divorced from their husbands,(N) because priests are holy to their God.(O) Regard them as holy,(P) because they offer up the food of your God.(Q) Consider them holy, because I the Lord am holy—I who make you holy.(R)

“‘If a priest’s daughter defiles herself by becoming a prostitute, she disgraces her father; she must be burned in the fire.(S)

10 “‘The high priest, the one among his brothers who has had the anointing oil poured on his head(T) and who has been ordained to wear the priestly garments,(U) must not let his hair become unkempt[b] or tear his clothes.(V) 11 He must not enter a place where there is a dead body.(W) He must not make himself unclean,(X) even for his father or mother,(Y) 12 nor leave the sanctuary(Z) of his God or desecrate it, because he has been dedicated by the anointing oil(AA) of his God. I am the Lord.

13 “‘The woman he marries must be a virgin.(AB) 14 He must not marry a widow, a divorced woman, or a woman defiled by prostitution, but only a virgin from his own people, 15 so that he will not defile his offspring among his people. I am the Lord, who makes him holy.’”

16 The Lord said to Moses, 17 “Say to Aaron: ‘For the generations to come none of your descendants who has a defect(AC) may come near to offer the food of his God.(AD) 18 No man who has any defect(AE) may come near: no man who is blind(AF) or lame,(AG) disfigured or deformed; 19 no man with a crippled foot or hand, 20 or who is a hunchback or a dwarf, or who has any eye defect, or who has festering or running sores or damaged testicles.(AH) 21 No descendant of Aaron the priest who has any defect(AI) is to come near to present the food offerings to the Lord.(AJ) He has a defect; he must not come near to offer the food of his God.(AK) 22 He may eat the most holy food of his God,(AL) as well as the holy food; 23 yet because of his defect,(AM) he must not go near the curtain or approach the altar, and so desecrate my sanctuary.(AN) I am the Lord, who makes them holy.(AO)’”

24 So Moses told this to Aaron and his sons and to all the Israelites.

Footnotes

  1. Leviticus 21:4 Or unclean as a leader among his people
  2. Leviticus 21:10 Or not uncover his head

Bible Gateway Sponsors