Leviticus 21-22 New King James Version (NKJV)
Regulations for Conduct of Priests
21 And the Lord said to Moses, “Speak to the priests, the sons of Aaron, and say to them: ‘None shall defile himself for the dead among his people, 2 except for his relatives who are nearest to him: his mother, his father, his son, his daughter, and his brother; 3 also his virgin sister who is near to him, who has had no husband, for her he may defile himself. 4 Otherwise he shall not defile himself, being a [a]chief man among his people, to profane himself.
5 ‘They shall not make any bald place on their heads, nor shall they shave the edges of their beards nor make any cuttings in their flesh. 6 They shall be holy to their God and not profane the name of their God, for they offer the offerings of the Lord made by fire, and the bread of their God; therefore they shall be holy. 7 They shall not take a wife who is a harlot or a defiled woman, nor shall they take a woman divorced from her husband; for [b]the priest is holy to his God. 8 Therefore you shall [c]consecrate him, for he offers the bread of your God. He shall be holy to you, for I the Lord, who sanctify you, am holy. 9 The daughter of any priest, if she profanes herself by playing the harlot, she profanes her father. She shall be burned with fire.
10 ‘He who is the high priest among his brethren, on whose head the anointing oil was poured and who is consecrated to wear the garments, shall not uncover[d] his head nor tear his clothes; 11 nor shall he go near any dead body, nor defile himself for his father or his mother; 12 nor shall he go out of the sanctuary, nor profane the sanctuary of his God; for the consecration of the anointing oil of his God is upon him: I am the Lord. 13 And he shall take a wife in her virginity. 14 A widow or a divorced woman or a defiled woman or a harlot—these he shall not marry; but he shall take a virgin of his own people as wife. 15 Nor shall he profane his posterity among his people, for I the Lord sanctify him.’ ”
16 And the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, 17 “Speak to Aaron, saying: ‘No man of your descendants in succeeding generations, who has any defect, may approach to offer the bread of his God. 18 For any man who has a defect shall not approach: a man blind or lame, who has a marred face or any limb too long, 19 a man who has a broken foot or broken hand, 20 or is a hunchback or a dwarf, or a man who has a defect in his eye, or eczema or scab, or is a eunuch. 21 No man of the descendants of Aaron the priest, who has a defect, shall come near to offer the offerings made by fire to the Lord. He has a defect; he shall not come near to offer the bread of his God. 22 He may eat the bread of his God, both the most holy and the holy; 23 only he shall not go near the veil or approach the altar, because he has a defect, lest he profane My sanctuaries; for I the Lord sanctify them.’ ”
24 And Moses told it to Aaron and his sons, and to all the children of Israel.
The Holiness of the Offerings
22 Then the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, 2 “Speak to Aaron and his sons, that they separate[e] themselves from the holy things of the children of Israel, and that they do not profane My holy name by what they dedicate to Me: I am the Lord. 3 Say to them: ‘Whoever of all your descendants throughout your generations, who goes near the holy things which the children of Israel dedicate to the Lord, while he has [f]uncleanness upon him, that person shall be cut off from My presence: I am the Lord.
4 ‘Whatever man of the descendants of Aaron, who is a leper or has a discharge, shall not eat the holy offerings until he is clean. And whoever touches anything made unclean by a corpse, or a man who has had an emission of semen, 5 or whoever touches any creeping thing by which he would be made unclean, or any person by whom he would become unclean, whatever his uncleanness may be— 6 the person who has touched any such thing shall be unclean until evening, and shall not eat the holy offerings unless he washes his body with water. 7 And when the sun goes down he shall be clean; and afterward he may eat the holy offerings, because it is his food. 8 Whatever dies naturally or is torn by beasts he shall not eat, to defile himself with it: I am the Lord.
9 ‘They shall therefore keep My [g]ordinance, lest they bear sin for it and die thereby, if they profane it: I the Lord sanctify them.
10 ‘No outsider shall eat the holy offering; one who [h]dwells with the priest, or a hired servant, shall not eat the holy thing. 11 But if the priest buys a person with his money, he may eat it; and one who is born in his house may eat his food. 12 If the priest’s daughter is married to an outsider, she may not eat of the holy offerings. 13 But if the priest’s daughter is a widow or divorced, and has no child, and has returned to her father’s house as in her youth, she may eat her father’s food; but no outsider shall eat it.
14 ‘And if a man eats the holy offering unintentionally, then he shall restore a holy offering to the priest, and add one-fifth to it. 15 They shall not profane the holy offerings of the children of Israel, which they offer to the Lord, 16 or allow them to bear the guilt of trespass when they eat their holy offerings; for I the Lord sanctify them.’ ”
Offerings Accepted and Not Accepted
17 And the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, 18 “Speak to Aaron and his sons, and to all the children of Israel, and say to them: ‘Whatever man of the house of Israel, or of the strangers in Israel, who [i]offers his sacrifice for any of his vows or for any of his freewill offerings, which they offer to the Lord as a burnt offering— 19 you shall offer of your own free will a male without blemish from the cattle, from the sheep, or from the goats. 20 Whatever has a defect, you shall not offer, for it shall not be acceptable on your behalf. 21 And whoever offers a sacrifice of a peace offering to the Lord, to fulfill his vow, or a freewill offering from the cattle or the sheep, it must be perfect to be accepted; there shall be no defect in it. 22 Those that are blind or broken or maimed, or have an [j]ulcer or eczema or scabs, you shall not offer to the Lord, nor make an offering by fire of them on the altar to the Lord. 23 Either a bull or a lamb that has any limb too long or too short you may offer as a freewill offering, but for a vow it shall not be accepted.
24 ‘You shall not offer to the Lord what is bruised or crushed, or torn or cut; nor shall you make any offering of them in your land. 25 Nor from a foreigner’s hand shall you offer any of these as the bread of your God, because their corruption is in them, and defects are in them. They shall not be accepted on your behalf.’ ”
26 And the Lord spoke to Moses, saying: 27 “When a bull or a sheep or a goat is born, it shall be seven days with its mother; and from the eighth day and thereafter it shall be accepted as an offering made by fire to the Lord. 28 Whether it is a cow or ewe, do not kill both her and her young on the same day. 29 And when you offer a sacrifice of thanksgiving to the Lord, offer it of your own free will. 30 On the same day it shall be eaten; you shall leave none of it until morning: I am the Lord.
31 “Therefore you shall keep My commandments, and perform them: I am the Lord. 32 You shall not profane My holy name, but I will be [k]hallowed among the children of Israel. I am the Lord who sanctifies you, 33 who brought you out of the land of Egypt, to be your God: I am the Lord.”
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.
For the best Bible Gateway experience, upgrade to Bible Gateway Plus. For less than the cost of a latte each month, you'll gain access to a vast digital Bible study library and reduced banner ads to minimize distractions from God's Word. Try it free for 30 days!
Three easy steps to start your free trial subscription to Bible Gateway Plus.