Leviticus 16International Standard Version (ISV)
The Day of Atonement
16 The Lord spoke to Moses after the death of Aaron’s two sons when they had approached the Lord and died. 2 The Lord told Moses, “Remind[a] your brother Aaron that at no time is he to enter the sacred place from the room that contains the curtain into the presence of the Mercy Seat[b] on top of the ark. Otherwise, he’ll die, because I will appear in a cloud at the Mercy Seat. 3 Aaron is to enter the sacred place with a young bull for a sin offering and a ram for a whole burnt offering. 4 He is to wear a sacred linen tunic and linen undergarments that will cover his genitals. He is to clothe himself with a sash and wrap his head with a linen turban. Because they are sacred garments, he is to wash himself with water before putting them on.”
The Atonement and Scapegoat Lots
5 “He is to take two male goats for a sin offering and one ram for a whole burnt offering from the assembly of the Israelis. 6 Then Aaron is to bring the bull as a sin offering for himself and make atonement for himself and his household. 7 Then he is to take the two male goats and present them in the Lord’s presence at the entrance to the Tent of Meeting. 8 Aaron is to cast lots over the two male goats—one lot for the Lord and the other one for the scapegoat.[c] 9 Aaron is then to bring the male goat on which the lot fell for the Lord and offer it as a sin offering. 10 The male goat on which the lot fell for the scapegoat is to be brought alive into the Lord’s presence to make atonement for himself. Then he is to send it into the wilderness.”
The Sin Offering
11 “Aaron is then to bring the bull for a sin offering for himself, thus making atonement for himself and his household. He is to slaughter the ox for himself. 12 Then he is to take a censer and fill it with coals from the fire on the altar in the Lord’s presence. With his hands full of spiced and refined incense, he is to bring it beyond the curtain.
13 “Then he is to place the incense over the fire in the Lord’s presence, ensuring that the smoke[d] from the incense covers the Mercy Seat, according to regulation, so he won’t die. 14 He is to take blood from the ox and sprinkle it with his forefinger toward the surface of the Mercy Seat. Then he is to sprinkle the blood on the surface of the Mercy Seat with his forefinger seven times.
15 “He is to slaughter the male goat as a sin offering for the people and bring its blood beyond the curtain and do with its blood as he did with the blood of the bull: He is to sprinkle it on the Mercy Seat—that is, over the surface of the Mercy Seat. 16 Then he is to make atonement on the sacred[e] place on account of the uncleanness of the Israelis, their transgressions, and all their sins. This is how he is to act in the Tent of Meeting, which will remain with them in the middle of their uncleanness.
17 “No person[f] is to be there when he enters the Tent of Meeting to make atonement in the sacred place, until he comes out and has made atonement on account of himself, his household, and the entire assembly of Israel. 18 When he goes to the altar in the Lord’s presence to make atonement for himself, he is to take some of the blood from the bull and the male goat, place it around the horns of the altar, 19 and sprinkle it with the blood on his forefinger seven times, cleansing and sanctifying it from Israel’s sins.”
The Scapegoat Offering
20 “When he has completed making atonement at the sacred place, the Tent of Meeting, and the altar, then he is to present the live male goat. 21 Aaron is to lay his two hands upon the head of the male goat and confess over it the sins of Israel, all their transgressions, and all their sins, thus placing them on the head of the male goat that he’ll then send out to the wilderness by the hand of a man capable of carrying out this task.[g] 22 The male goat will bear on itself all their sins to a solitary land as Aaron sends the goat out to the wilderness.
23 “Then Aaron is to enter the Tent of Meeting, take off his white linen clothes that he had put on when he entered the sacred place, and leave them there. 24 He is to wash his body with water at the sacred place and put on his clothes. Then he is to go out and offer a whole burnt offering for himself and a whole burnt offering for the people, thereby making atonement on account of himself and on account of the people.
25 “As to the fat from the burnt offering, he is to incinerate it on the altar. 26 The one who sent away the male goat as a scapegoat[h] is to wash his clothes and bathe his body with water. After doing so, he may enter the camp.
27 “The bull for the sin offering and the male goat for the sin offering, whose blood was brought into the sacred place, are to be taken outside the camp. Their skin, meat, and offal are to be incinerated. 28 The one who burns them is to wash his clothes and bathe his body with water. After doing so, he may enter the camp.”
The Perpetual Statute
29 “This is to be a perpetual statute for you: On the tenth day of the seventh month, you (including both the native born and the resident alien) are to humble yourselves by not doing any work, 30 because on that day, atonement will be made[i] for you to cleanse you from all your sins. You are to be clean in the Lord’s presence. 31 It’s the Sabbath of all Sabbaths for you, so humble yourselves. This is to be a perpetual statute. 32 The priest who has been anointed and consecrated to be priest after his father is to make the atonement. He is to put on the sacred linen clothing 33 and make atonement for the sacred sanctuary, the Tent of Meeting, and the altar where atonement is carried out. He is also to make atonement for the priests and the people of the entire assembly. 34 This will be a perpetual statute for you as you make atonement once a year for the Israelis on account of all their sins.”
So Moses did just as the Lord had commanded him.
Starting your free trial of Bible Gateway Plus is easy. You’re already logged in with your Bible Gateway account. The next step is to enter your payment information. Your credit card won’t be charged until the trial period is over. You can cancel anytime during the trial period.
Click the button below to continue.
You’ve already claimed your free trial of Bible Gateway Plus. To subscribe at our regular subscription rate of $3.99/month, click the button below.
It looks like you’re already subscribed to Bible Gateway Plus! To manage your subscription, visit your Bible Gateway account settings.
You've successfully created your account! For the ultimate Bible Gateway experience, consider upgrading Bible Gateway Plus to get the most out of your new account. For just a few dollars each month, a Bible Gateway Plus upgrade gives you:
• A complete digital Bible study library integrated with your Bible Gateway account, with no expensive software to install.
• Access to 40+ study & reference books including the NIV Study Bible, the Zondervan Illustrated Bible Backgrounds Commentary, and the MacArthur Study Bible.
• Special during April only: full access to the NIV Cultural Backgrounds Study Bible
• An ad-free Bible Gateway experience.
• A risk-free, 30-day trial—you can cancel any time.
Three easy steps to start your free trial subscription to Bible Gateway Plus.