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Exodus 28 Easy-to-Read Version (ERV)

Clothes for the Priests

28 “Tell your brother Aaron and his sons, Nadab, Abihu, Eleazar, and Ithamar, to come to you from the Israelites. These men will serve me as priests.

“Make special clothes for your brother Aaron. These clothes will give him honor and respect. I have given special wisdom to some of the skilled men. Tell them to make the clothes for Aaron. These clothes will show that he serves me in a special way. Then he can serve me as a priest. These are the clothes the men should make: the judgment pouch, the ephod, a blue robe, a white woven robe, a turban, and a cloth belt. They must make these special clothes for your brother Aaron and his sons. Then Aaron and his sons can serve me as priests. Tell the men to use gold thread, fine linen, and blue, purple, and red yarn.

The Ephod and the Cloth Belt

“Use gold thread, fine linen, and blue, purple, and red yarn to make the ephod. This must be the work of a very skilled person. At each shoulder of the ephod, there should be a shoulder piece. These shoulder pieces should be tied to the two corners of the ephod.

“The men will very carefully weave a cloth belt for the ephod. This belt must be made the same way as the ephod—use gold threads, fine linen, and blue, purple, and red yarn.

“Take two onyx stones. Write the names of the twelve sons of Israel on these jewels. 10 Write six names on one jewel and six names on the other jewel. Write the names in order, from the oldest son to the youngest. 11 Cut the names of the sons of Israel into these stones. Do this the way a worker makes a seal. Put the jewels in gold settings. 12 Then put these two jewels on the shoulder pieces of the ephod. Aaron will wear this special coat when he stands before the Lord. And the two stones with the names of the sons of Israel will be on the ephod. These jewels will cause the Lord to remember the Israelites. 13 Use fine gold to hold the stones on the ephod. 14 Twist chains of pure gold together like a rope. Make two of these gold chains and fasten them to the gold settings.

The Judgment Pouch

15 “Make the judgment pouch for the high priest. Skilled workers should make this pouch just as they made the ephod. They must use gold threads, fine linen, and blue, purple, and red yarn. 16 The judgment pouch should be folded double to make a square pocket. It should be 1 span[a] long and 1 span wide. 17 Put four rows of beautiful jewels on the judgment pouch. The first row of jewels should have a ruby, a topaz, and a beryl. 18 The second row should have a turquoise, a sapphire, and an emerald. 19 The third row should have a jacinth, an agate, and an amethyst. 20 The fourth row should have a chrysolite, an onyx, and a jasper. Set all these jewels in gold. 21 There will be twelve jewels on the judgment pouch—one stone for each of the sons of Israel. Each stone will be like a seal with the name of one of the twelve tribes cut into it.

22 “Make chains of pure gold for the judgment pouch. These chains must be braided like a rope. 23 Make two gold rings and put them on two corners of the judgment pouch. 24 Put the two golden chains through the two rings at the corners of the judgment pouch. 25 Fasten the other ends of the gold chains to the two settings. This will fasten them to the two shoulder pieces of the ephod on the front. 26 Make two more gold rings and put them on the other two corners of the judgment pouch. This will be on the inside edge of the judgment pouch next to the ephod. 27 Make two more gold rings and put them on the bottom of the shoulder pieces on the front of the ephod. Put the gold rings above the cloth belt of the ephod. 28 Use blue ribbon to tie the rings of the judgment pouch to the rings of the ephod. In this way the judgment pouch will rest close to the cloth belt and will be held against the ephod.

29 “When Aaron enters the Holy Place, he must wear the judgment pouch. In this way he will wear the names of the twelve sons of Israel over his heart. And the Lord will always be reminded of them. 30 Put the Urim and Thummim inside the judgment pouch. They will be over Aaron’s heart when he goes before the Lord. So Aaron will always carry with him a way of judging for the Israelites when he is before the Lord.

Other Clothes for the Priests

31 “Make a blue robe for the ephod. 32 Make a hole in the center for the head. And sew a piece of cloth around the edge of this hole. This cloth will be like a collar that keeps the hole from tearing. 33 Use blue, purple, and red yarn to make cloth pomegranates. Hang these pomegranates around the bottom edge of the robe, and hang gold bells between the pomegranates. 34 So around the bottom edge of the robe there should be bells and pomegranates. There should be a bell following each pomegranate. 35 Aaron will wear this robe when he serves as a priest. The bells will ring as Aaron goes into the Holy Place to stand before the Lord, and the bells will ring as he leaves the Holy Place. This way Aaron will not die.

36 “Make a strip of pure gold and carve these words into the gold like the writing on a seal: holy to the lord.[b] 37 Fasten the gold strip to a blue ribbon. Tie the blue ribbon around the turban. The gold strip should be on the front of the turban. 38 Aaron will wear this on his head. In this way he will remove the guilt if anything is wrong with the gifts that the Israelites[c] give to God. Aaron will always wear this on his head so that the Lord will accept the gifts of the people.

39 “Use fine linen to make the white woven robe and the turban. The cloth belt should have designs sewn into it. 40 Also make coats, belts, and cloth caps for Aaron’s sons. This will give them honor and respect. 41 Put the clothes on your brother Aaron and his sons. Then pour the special oil on them to make them priests. This will make them holy, and they will serve me as priests.

42 “Use linen to make underclothes for the priests. These underclothes will cover them from the waist to the thighs. 43 Aaron and his sons must wear these clothes whenever they enter the Meeting Tent. They must wear these clothes when they come near to the altar to serve as priests in the Holy Place. If they don’t wear these clothes, they will be guilty of wrong and will have to die. All this should be a law that continues forever for Aaron and all his family after him.


  1. Exodus 28:16 1 span The distance from the tip of the thumb to the tip of the little finger, about 9" (23 cm).
  2. Exodus 28:36 Holy to the Lord These words were written on everything that was used in the Temple. This showed that these things belonged to the Lord and that they could be used only for special purposes. Dishes with this label could be used only by the priests in a holy place.
  3. Exodus 28:38 In this way … Israelites Literally, “It will keep him holy when he bears the guilt from the gifts of the Israelites.”
Easy-to-Read Version (ERV)

Copyright © 2006 by Bible League International


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