The Fourth Book of Moses, Called Numbers

Chapter 18

The charge of the priests and Levites, 1-7. The priests' portion, 8-20. The Levites' portion, 21-24. The heave offering to the priests out of the Levites' portion, 25-32.

1 And the LORD said to Aaron, "You and your sons and your father's house with you shall bear the iniquity of the sanctuary. And you and your sons with you shall bear the iniquity of your priesthood. 2 And also your brothers of the tribe of Levi, the tribe of your father, bring with you so that they may be joined to you and minister to you, but you and your sons with you shall minister before the tabernacle of witness. 3 And they shall keep your charge and the charge of all the tabernacle. Only they shall not come near the vessels of the sanctuary and the altar so that neither they, nor you also, die. 4 And they shall be joined to you and keep the charge of the Tabernacle of the Congregation for all the service of the tabernacle. And a stranger shall not come near you. 5 And you shall keep the charge of the sanctuary and the charge of the altar so that there is no wrath anymore upon the children of Israel. 6 And I, behold, I have taken your brothers the Levites from among the children of Israel. To you they are given as a gift for the LORD to do the service of the Tabernacle of the Congregation. 7 Therefore, you and your sons with you shall keep your priest's office for everything of the altar and within the veil, and you shall serve. I have given your priest's office to you as a service of gift. And the stranger who comes near shall be put to death."

8 And the LORD spoke to Aaron, "Behold, I also have given you the charge of my heave-offerings of all the hallowed things of the children of Israel. To you I have given them by reason of the anointing and to your sons by an ordinance forever. 9 This shall be yours of the most holy things reserved from the fire. Every oblation of theirs, every food-offering of theirs, every sin-offering of theirs, and every trespass-offering of theirs which they shall render to me shall be most holy for you and for your sons. 10 In the most holy place you shall eat it. Every male shall eat it. It shall be holy to you. 11 And this is yours: the heave-offering of their gift with all the wave-offerings of the children of Israel. I have given them to you, to your sons, and to your daughters with you by a statute forever. Everyone who is clean in your house shall eat of it. 12 All the best of the oil, all the best of the wine, and of the wheat, the first-fruits of them which they offer to the LORD, I have given them to you. 13 And whatever is first ripe in the land, which they bring to the LORD, shall be yours. Everyone who is clean in your house shall eat of it. 14 Everything devoted in Israel shall be yours. 15 Everything that opens the womb in all flesh, which they bring to the LORD, whether of men or beast, shall be yours. Nevertheless, the first born of man you shall surely redeem and the first-born of unclean beasts you shall redeem. 16 And those who are to be redeemed from a month old you shall redeem, according to your estimation, for the money of five shekels, after the shekel of the sanctuary, which is twenty gerahs. 17 But the first-born of a cow, the first-born of a sheep, or the first-born of a goat, you shall not redeem. They are holy. You shall sprinkle their blood upon the altar and burn their fat for an offering made by fire for a sweet savor to the LORD. 18 And their flesh shall be yours, as the wave-breast and as the right shoulder are yours. 19 All the heave-offerings of the holy things which the children of Israel offer to the LORD, I have given to you, to your sons, and your daughters with you by a statute forever. It is a covenant of salt forever before the LORD to you and to your seed with you." 20 And the LORD spoke to Aaron, "You shall have no inheritance in their land, neither shall you have any part among them. I am your part and your inheritance among the children of Israel.

21 "And behold, I have given the children of Levi all the tenth in Israel for an inheritance for their service which they serve, even the service of the Tabernacle of the Congregation, 22 Neither must the children of Israel from now on come near the Tabernacle of the Congregation, lest they bear sin and die. 23 But the Levites shall do the service of the Tabernacle of the Congregation and they shall bear their iniquity. It shall be a statute forever throughout your generations, that among the children of Israel they have no inheritance. 24 But the tithes of the children of Israel which they offer as a heave-offering to the LORD, I have given to the Levites to inherit. Therefore, I have said to them, 'Among the children of Israel they shall have no inheritance.'"

25 And the LORD spoke to Moses, saying, 26 "Thus speak to the Levites and say to them, 'When you take from the children of Israel the tithes which I have given you from them for your inheritance, you shall offer up a heave-offering of it for the LORD, even a tenth part of the tithe. 27 And this your heave-offering shall be reckoned to you, as though it were the corn of the threshing-floor and as the fullness of the wine-press. 28 Thus you also shall offer a heave-offering to the LORD of all your tithes which you receive of the children of Israel. And from them you shall give the LORD'S heave-offering to Aaron the priest. 29 Out of all your gifts you shall offer every heave-offering of the LORD, of all the best of it, even its hallowed part out of it.' 30 Therefore, you shall say to them, 'When you have heaved from it its best, it shall be counted to the Levites as the increase of the threshing-floor and as the increase of the wine-press. 31 And you shall eat it in every place—you and your households—for it is your reward for your service in the Tabernacle of the Congregation. 32 And you shall bear no sin by reason of it when you have heaved from it its best, neither shall you pollute the holy things of the children of Israel, lest you die.'"

Commentary

Matthew Henry Commentary - Numbers, Chapter 18

Notes

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