Numbers 3

1These are the generations of Aaron and Moses at the time when the LORD spoke with Moses on Mount Sinai. 2These are the names of the sons of Aaron: Nadab the firstborn, and Abihu, Eleazar, and Ithamar. 3These are the names of the sons of Aaron, the anointed priests, whom he ordained to serve as priests. 4But Nadab and Abihu died before the LORD when they offered unauthorized fire before the LORD in the wilderness of Sinai, and they had no children. So Eleazar and Ithamar served as priests in the lifetime of Aaron their father. 5And the LORD spoke to Moses, saying, 6“Bring the tribe of Levi near, and set them before Aaron the priest, that they may minister to him. 7They shall keep guard over him and over the whole congregation before the tent of meeting, as they minister at the tabernacle. 8They shall guard all the furnishings of the tent of meeting, and keep guard over the people of Israel as they minister at the tabernacle. 9And you shall give the Levites to Aaron and his sons; they are wholly given to him from among the people of Israel. 10And you shall appoint Aaron and his sons, and they shall guard their priesthood. But if any outsider comes near, he shall be put to death.” 11And the LORD spoke to Moses, saying, 12“Behold, I have taken the Levites from among the people of Israel instead of every firstborn who opens the womb among the people of Israel. The Levites shall be mine, 13for all the firstborn are mine. On the day that I struck down all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, I consecrated for my own all the firstborn in Israel, both of man and of beast. They shall be mine: I am the LORD.” 14And the LORD spoke to Moses in the wilderness of Sinai, saying, 15“List the sons of Levi, by fathers’ houses and by clans; every male from a month old and upward you shall list.” 16So Moses listed them according to the word of the LORD, as he was commanded. 17And these were the sons of Levi by their names: Gershon and Kohath and Merari. 18And these are the names of the sons of Gershon by their clans: Libni and Shimei. 19And the sons of Kohath by their clans: Amram, Izhar, Hebron, and Uzziel. 20And the sons of Merari by their clans: Mahli and Mushi. These are the clans of the Levites, by their fathers’ houses. 21To Gershon belonged the clan of the Libnites and the clan of the Shimeites; these were the clans of the Gershonites. 22Their listing according to the number of all the males from a month old and upward was 7,500. 23The clans of the Gershonites were to camp behind the tabernacle on the west, 24with Eliasaph, the son of Lael as chief of the fathers’ house of the Gershonites. 25And the guard duty of the sons of Gershon in the tent of meeting involved the tabernacle, the tent with its covering, the screen for the entrance of the tent of meeting, 26the hangings of the court, the screen for the door of the court that is around the tabernacle and the altar, and its cords—all the service connected with these. 27To Kohath belonged the clan of the Amramites and the clan of the Izharites and the clan of the Hebronites and the clan of the Uzzielites; these are the clans of the Kohathites. 28According to the number of all the males, from a month old and upward, there were 8,600, keeping guard over the sanctuary. 29The clans of the sons of Kohath were to camp on the south side of the tabernacle, 30with Elizaphan the son of Uzziel as chief of the fathers’ house of the clans of the Kohathites. 31And their guard duty involved the ark, the table, the lampstand, the altars, the vessels of the sanctuary with which the priests minister, and the screen; all the service connected with these. 32And Eleazar the son of Aaron the priest was to be chief over the chiefs of the Levites, and to have oversight of those who kept guard over the sanctuary. 33To Merari belonged the clan of the Mahlites and the clan of the Mushites: these are the clans of Merari. 34Their listing according to the number of all the males from a month old and upward was 6,200. 35And the chief of the fathers’ house of the clans of Merari was Zuriel the son of Abihail. They were to camp on the north side of the tabernacle. 36And the appointed guard duty of the sons of Merari involved the frames of the tabernacle, the bars, the pillars, the bases, and all their accessories; all the service connected with these; 37also the pillars around the court, with their bases and pegs and cords. 38Those who were to camp before the tabernacle on the east, before the tent of meeting toward the sunrise, were Moses and Aaron and his sons, guarding the sanctuary itself, to protect the people of Israel. And any outsider who came near was to be put to death. 39All those listed among the Levites, whom Moses and Aaron listed at the commandment of the LORD, by clans, all the males from a month old and upward, were 22,000. 40And the LORD said to Moses, “List all the firstborn males of the people of Israel, from a month old and upward, taking the number of their names. 41And you shall take the Levites for me—I am the LORD—instead of all the firstborn among the people of Israel, and the cattle of the Levites instead of all the firstborn among the cattle of the people of Israel.” 42So Moses listed all the firstborn among the people of Israel, as the LORD commanded him. 43And all the firstborn males, according to the number of names, from a month old and upward as listed were 22,273. 44And the LORD spoke to Moses, saying, 45“Take the Levites instead of all the firstborn among the people of Israel, and the cattle of the Levites instead of their cattle. The Levites shall be mine: I am the LORD. 46And as the redemption price for the 273 of the firstborn of the people of Israel, over and above the number of the male Levites, 47you shall take five shekels per head; you shall take them according to the shekel of the sanctuary (the shekel of twenty gerahs), 48and give the money to Aaron and his sons as the redemption price for those who are over.” 49So Moses took the redemption money from those who were over and above those redeemed by the Levites. 50From the firstborn of the people of Israel he took the money, 1,365 shekels, by the shekel of the sanctuary. 51And Moses gave the redemption money to Aaron and his sons, according to the word of the LORD, as the LORD commanded Moses.

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