Bamidbar (Numbers): Korach > Ch 18

G-d tells Aaron that Kohanim will be responsible for protecting the Sanctuary. The tribe of Levi will help the Kohanim.

  • The Lord said to Aaron: You, your sons and your father's house shall bear the iniquity associated with the Sanctuary, and you and your sons with you shall bear the iniquity associated with your kehunah.
  • Also your brethren, the tribe of Levi, your father's tribe, draw close to you, and they shall join you and minister to you, and you and your sons with you, before the Tent of Testimony. They shall keep your charge and the charge of the Tent, and they shall not approach the holy vessels or the altar, so that neither they nor you will die. They shall join you, and they shall keep the charge of the Tent of Meeting for all the service of the Tent, and no outsider shall come near you. They shall keep the charge of the Sanctuary and the charge of the altar, so that there be no more wrath against the children of Israel. I have therefore taken your brethren, the Levites, from among the children of Israel; they are given to you as a gift, and given over to the Lord to perform the service in the Tent of Meeting. And you and your sons shall keep your kehunah in all matters concerning the altar, and concerning what is within the dividing screen, and you shall serve; the service as a gift I have given your kehunah, and any outsider [non-kohen] who approaches shall die.


G-d tells Aaron what of the offerings brought by the children of Israel will be a gift to the Kohanim

  • The Lord told Aaron: Behold I have given you the charge of My gift [offerings]. I have thus given you all the holy things of the children of Israel for distinction, and as an eternal portion for your sons. These shall be yours from the holiest of holies, from the fire:
  • all their offerings, their meal-offerings, their sin-offerings, their guilt-offerings, [and] what they return to Me; they shall be holy of holies to you and to your sons. You shall eat it in the holiest of places. Any male may eat of it; it shall be holy to you. This shall be yours what is set aside for their gifts from all the wavings of the children of Israel; I have given them to you, and to your sons and to your daughters with you, as an eternal portion. Any [ritually] clean member of your household may eat it.
  • The choice of the oil and the choice of the wine and grain, the first of which they give to the Lord, to you I have given them.
  • The first fruit of all that grows in their land, which they shall bring to the Lord shall be yours; any [ritually] clean member of your household may eat of it.
  • Any devoted thing in Israel shall be yours.
  • Every first issue of the womb of any creature, which they present to the Lord, whether of man or beast, shall be yours. However, you shall redeem the firstborn of man, and the firstborn of unclean animals you shall redeem. Its redemption [shall be performed] from the age of a month, according to the valuation, five shekels of silver, according to the holy shekel, which is twenty gerahs. However, a firstborn ox or a firstborn sheep or a firstborn goat shall not be redeemed, for they are holy; their blood shall be sprinkled on the altar, and their fats shall be burned as a fire-offering, as a pleasing fragrance to the Lord. Their flesh shall be yours; like the breast of the waving and the right thigh, it shall be yours.
  • All the gifts of the holy [offerings] which are set aside by the children of Israel for the Lord I have given to you, and to your sons and daughters with you, as an eternal portion; it is like an eternal covenant of salt before the Lord, for you and your descendants with you.
  • The Lord said to Aaron, You shall not inherit in their land, and you shall have no portion among them. I am your inheritance and portion among the children of Israel.


Levites will also receive a portion of earnings from the people. And Levites must give a portion of that portion to G-d.

  • And to the descendants of Levi, I have given all tithes of Israel as an inheritance, in exchange for their service which they perform-the service of the Tent of Meeting. The children of Israel shall therefore no longer approach the Tent of Meeting, lest they bear sin and die. The Levites shall perform the service of the Tent of Meeting, and they will bear their iniquity; it is an eternal statute for your generations, but among the children of Israel they shall have no inheritance. For the tithes of the children of Israel, which they shall set aside for the Lord as a gift, I have given to the Levites as an inheritance. Thus, I have said to them that they shall have no inheritance among the children of Israel.
  • The Lord spoke to Moses, saying: Speak to the Levites and tell them, "When you take the tithe from the children of Israel which I have given you from them as your inheritance, you shall set aside from it a gift for the Lord, a tithe of the tithe. Your gift shall be considered for you as grain from the threshing-floor and as the produce of the vat. So shall you too set aside a gift for the Lord from all the tithes you take from the children of Israel, and you shall give there from the Lord's gift to Aaron the priest. From all your gifts, you shall set aside every gift of the Lord, from its choicest portion, that part of it which is to be consecrated." Say to them, "When you separate its choicest part, it shall be considered for the Levites as produce from the threshing-floor and as produce from the vat. You and your household may eat it anywhere, for it is your wage for you in exchange for your service in the Tent of Meeting. After you separate the choicest part from it, you shall not bear any sin on account of it, but you shall not profane the sacred [offerings] of the children of Israel, so that you shall not die.


 
Rashi Commentary

  • Shall bear the iniquity associated with the Sanctuary I impose upon you the punishment of the outsiders who sin regarding the sacred objects entrusted to you; the Tent, the ark, the table, and the sacred vessels. You shall sit and warn any unauthorized person who attempts to touch [the sacred objects].


Prev Page
Next Page