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Instructions for Making Garments for Priests

28 “And bring near to you Aaron, your brother, and his sons with him from the midst of the Israelites[a] to serve as priests for me—Aaron, Nadab and Abihu, Eleazar and Ithamar, the sons of Aaron. And you will make holy garments[b] for Aaron, your brother, for glory and for splendor.[c] And you will speak to all the skilled of heart, whom I have given a gift of skill,[d] and they will make the garments of Aaron to consecrate him for his serving as my priest. And these are the garments that they will make: A breast piece and an ephod and a robe and a tunic of specially woven fabric,[e] a turban and a sash. And they will make holy garments[f] for Aaron your brother, and for his sons to serve as priests for me.

“And they will take the gold and the blue and the purple and the crimson yarns and the fine linen, and they will make the ephod of gold, blue and purple, and crimson yarns, and finely twisted linen, the work of a skilled craftsman. It will have two joining shoulder pieces at its two edges, so that it can be fastened. And the waistband of his ephod, which is on it, will be of like work to it—gold, blue, and purple and crimson yarns and finely twisted linen.

“And you will take two onyx stones and engrave on them the names of the Israelites,[g] 10 with six of their names on the one stone and the remaining six on the second, according to their genealogies.[h] 11 As the work of a skilled stone craftsman, with seal engravings you will engrave on the two stones the names of the Israelites;[i] you will make them mounted in gold filigree settings. 12 And you will set the two stones on the ephod’s shoulder pieces as stones of remembrance for the Israelites,[j] and Aaron will bear their names before Yahweh on his two shoulder pieces for remembrance.

13 “And you will make gold filigree settings. 14 And you will make two braided chains of pure gold ornamental cord work, and you will put the chains of the ornamental cords on the filigree settings. 15 And you will make a breast piece of judgment, a work of a skilled craftsman; you will make it like the work of the ephod; you will make it of gold, blue and purple and crimson yarns, and finely twisted linen. 16 It will be squared, doubled, a span its length and a span its width. 17 And you will fill it with stone mounting, four rows of stone, a row of carnelian, topaz, and emerald is the first row; 18 and the second row is a malachite, a sapphire, and a moonstone; 19 and the third row is a jacinth, an agate, and an amethyst; 20 and the fourth row is a turquoise and an onyx and a jasper. Their settings will be woven with gold. 21 The stones will be according to the names of the Israelites,[k] twelve according to their names, with seal engravings, each according to its name they will be for the twelve tribes.

22 “And you will make on the breast piece braided chains, a work of pure gold ornamental cord. 23 And you will make on the breast piece two gold rings, and you will put the two rings on the two edges of the breast piece. 24 And you will put the two gold ornamental cords on the two rings on the edges of the breast piece. 25 And you will put the two ends of the two ornamental cords on the two filigree settings, and you will put them on the shoulder pieces of the ephod at the front of it. 26 And you will make two gold rings, and you will place them on the two ends of the breast piece, on its edge that is on the other side[l] of the ephod, to the inside.[m] 27 And you will make two rings and put them on the two shoulder pieces of the ephod below at its front near its seam above the waistband of the ephod. 28 And they will tie the breast piece by its rings to the rings of the ephod with a blue cord to be on the waistband of the ephod, and the breast piece will not come loose from the ephod. 29 And Aaron will bear the names of the Israelites[n] in the breast piece of judgment on his heart, when he comes to the sanctuary, for a remembrance before Yahweh continually. 30 And you will put the Urim and the Thummim on the breast piece of judgment, and they will be on the heart of Aaron when he comes before Yahweh, and Aaron will bear the judgment of the Israelites[o] on his heart before Yahweh continually.

31 “And you will make the robe of the ephod totally of blue yarn. 32 And the opening for his head will be in the middle of it; its opening will have an edge all around, the work of a weaver; it will be like the opening of a sturdy garment for it, so that it will not be torn. 33 And you will make on its hem pomegranates of blue and purple and crimson yarns on its hem all around and bells of gold in the midst of them all around, 34 a gold bell and a pomegranate, a gold bell and a pomegranate, on the hem of the robe all around. 35 And it will be on Aaron for serving, and its sound will be heard at his coming into the sanctuary before Yahweh and at his going out, so that he will not die.

36 “And you will make a pure gold rosette,[p] and you will engrave on it with seal engravings: “A holy object for Yahweh.” 37 And you will place it on a blue cord, and it will be on the turban, at the front of the turban it will be. 38 And it will be on the forehead of Aaron, and Aaron will bear the guilt of the holy objects that the Israelites[q] will consecrate for all their holy gifts, and it will be on his forehead continually for acceptance for them before Yahweh.

39 “And you will weave the tunic of fine linen, and you will make a turban of fine linen, and you will make a sash, the work of an embroiderer. 40 And for the sons of Aaron you will make tunics, and you will make for them sashes and headdresses; you will make them for glory and for splendor.[r] 41 And you will clothe them—Aaron, your brother, and his sons with him—and you will anoint them and ordain them[s] and consecrate them, and they will serve as priests for me. 42 And make for them undergarments of linen to cover naked flesh; they will be from loins to thigh. 43 And they will be on Aaron and on his sons when they come to the tent of assembly or when they approach the altar to serve in the sanctuary, so that they will not bear guilt and die. It is a lasting statute for him and for his offspring after him.


  1. Exodus 28:1 Literally “sons/children of Israel”
  2. Exodus 28:2 Or “garments of holiness”
  3. Exodus 28:2 Or “beauty”
  4. Exodus 28:3 Literally “a spirit of wisdom”
  5. Exodus 28:4 Precisely what kind of fabric this was is debated
  6. Exodus 28:4 Or “garments of holiness”
  7. Exodus 28:9 Literally “sons/children of Israel”
  8. Exodus 28:10 In other words, “according to their birth order”
  9. Exodus 28:11 Literally “sons/children of Israel”
  10. Exodus 28:12 Literally “sons/children of Israel”
  11. Exodus 28:21 Literally “sons/children of Israel”
  12. Exodus 28:26 Literally “beyond”
  13. Exodus 28:26 Literally “houseward,” “to house,” meaning “inward”
  14. Exodus 28:29 Literally “sons/children of Israel”
  15. Exodus 28:30 Literally “sons/children of Israel”
  16. Exodus 28:36 Or “medallion”
  17. Exodus 28:38 Literally “sons/children of Israel”
  18. Exodus 28:40 Or “beauty”
  19. Exodus 28:41 Literally “fill their hand”