1The LORD said to Moses,2‘Say to Aaron, “Set up the seven lamps. They will light up the area in front of the lampstand.” ’3So Aaron did it. He set up the lamps so that they faced forward on the lampstand. He did just as the LORD had commanded Moses.4The lampstand was made out of hammered gold. From its base to its blooms it was made out of hammered gold. The lampstand was made exactly like the pattern the LORD had shown Moses.
Moses sets apart the Levites
5The LORD spoke to Moses. He said,6‘Take the Levites from among all the Israelites. Make them “clean” in the usual way.7Here is how to make them pure. Sprinkle the special water on them. Then let them shave their whole bodies. Also let them wash their clothes. That is how they will make themselves pure.8Have them get a young bull along with its grain offering. The offering must be made out of the finest flour mixed with olive oil. Then you must get a second young bull. You must sacrifice it as a sin offering.9Bring the Levites to the front of the tent of meeting. Gather the whole community of Israel together.10You must bring the Levites to me. The Israelites must place their hands on them.11Aaron must bring the Levites to me. They are a wave offering from the Israelites. That is how they will be set apart to do my work.12‘Then I want the Levites to place their hands on the heads of the bulls. They must sacrifice one bull as a sin offering to me. And they must sacrifice the other as a burnt offering. The blood of the bulls will pay for the sin of the Levites.13Have the Levites stand in front of Aaron and his sons. Then give them as a wave offering to me.14That is how I want you to set apart the Levites from the other Israelites. The Levites will belong to me.15‘Make the Levites pure. Give them to me as a wave offering. Then they must come to do their work at the tent of meeting.16They are the Israelites who will be given to me completely. I have taken them to be my own. I have taken them in place of every son born first in his family in Israel.17Every male born first in Israel belongs to me. That is true whether it is a human or an animal. In Egypt I struck down all the males born first to their mothers. Then I set apart for myself all the males born first in Israel.18And I have taken the Levites in place of all the sons born first in Israel.19I have given the Levites as gifts to Aaron and his sons. I have taken them from among all the Israelites. I have appointed them to do the work at the tent of meeting. They will do it in place of the Israelites. That is how they will keep the Israelites from being guilty when they go near the sacred tent. Then no plague will strike the Israelites when they go near the tent.’20So Moses and Aaron and all the Israelites did with the Levites just as the LORD had commanded Moses.21The Levites made themselves pure. They washed their clothes. Then Aaron gave them to the LORD as a wave offering. That’s how he paid for their sin to make them pure.22After that, the Levites came to do their work at the tent of meeting. They worked under the direction of Aaron and his sons. And so Moses and Aaron and the whole community of Israel did with the Levites just as the LORD had commanded Moses.23The LORD said to Moses,24‘Here is what the Levites must do. Men 25 years old or more must come and take part in the work at the tent of meeting.25But when they reach the age of 50, they must not work any longer. They must stop doing their regular work.26They can help their brothers with their duties at the tent of meeting. But they themselves should not do the work. That is how you must direct the Levites to do their work.’
English Standard Version
The Seven Lamps
1Now the Lord spoke to Moses, saying,2“Speak to Aaron and say to him, When you set up the lamps, the seven lamps shall give light in front of the lampstand.”3And Aaron did so: he set up its lamps in front of the lampstand, as the Lord commanded Moses.4And this was the workmanship of the lampstand, hammered work of gold. From its base to its flowers, it was hammered work; according to the pattern that the Lord had shown Moses, so he made the lampstand. (Ex 25:31)
Cleansing of the Levites
5And the Lord spoke to Moses, saying,6“Take the Levites from among the people of Israel and cleanse them.7Thus you shall do to them to cleanse them: sprinkle the water of purification upon them, and let them go with a razor over all their body, and wash their clothes and cleanse themselves. (Le 8:6; Le 14:8; Nu 19:9; Nu 19:17)8Then let them take a bull from the herd and its grain offering of fine flour mixed with oil, and you shall take another bull from the herd for a sin offering. (Ex 29:41; Le 2:1; Nu 8:12)9And you shall bring the Levites before the tent of meeting and assemble the whole congregation of the people of Israel. (Ex 29:4; Ex 40:12; Le 8:3)10When you bring the Levites before the Lord, the people of Israel shall lay their hands on the Levites, (Le 1:4)11and Aaron shall offer the Levites before the Lord as a wave offering from the people of Israel, that they may do the service of the Lord.12Then the Levites shall lay their hands on the heads of the bulls, and you shall offer the one for a sin offering and the other for a burnt offering to the Lord to make atonement for the Levites. (Ex 29:10; Nu 8:8)13And you shall set the Levites before Aaron and his sons, and shall offer them as a wave offering to the Lord. (Nu 8:11; Nu 8:21)14“Thus you shall separate the Levites from among the people of Israel, and the Levites shall be mine. (Nu 3:45; Nu 16:9)15And after that the Levites shall go in to serve at the tent of meeting, when you have cleansed them and offered them as a wave offering. (Nu 8:13)16For they are wholly given to me from among the people of Israel. Instead of all who open the womb, the firstborn of all the people of Israel, I have taken them for myself. (Nu 3:9; Nu 3:12; Nu 3:45)17For all the firstborn among the people of Israel are mine, both of man and of beast. On the day that I struck down all the firstborn in the land of Egypt I consecrated them for myself, (Ex 13:2)18and I have taken the Levites instead of all the firstborn among the people of Israel.19And I have given the Levites as a gift to Aaron and his sons from among the people of Israel, to do the service for the people of Israel at the tent of meeting and to make atonement for the people of Israel, that there may be no plague among the people of Israel when the people of Israel come near the sanctuary.” (Nu 1:53; Nu 8:16; Nu 25:11; Nu 25:13)20Thus did Moses and Aaron and all the congregation of the people of Israel to the Levites. According to all that the Lord commanded Moses concerning the Levites, the people of Israel did to them.21And the Levites purified themselves from sin and washed their clothes, and Aaron offered them as a wave offering before the Lord, and Aaron made atonement for them to cleanse them. (Nu 8:7; Nu 8:11; Nu 8:13; Nu 8:15)22And after that the Levites went in to do their service in the tent of meeting before Aaron and his sons; as the Lord had commanded Moses concerning the Levites, so they did to them.
Retirement of the Levites
23And the Lord spoke to Moses, saying,24“This applies to the Levites: from twenty-five years old and upward they shall come to do duty in the service of the tent of meeting. (Nu 4:3; 1Ch 23:3; 1Ch 23:24; 1Ch 23:27)25And from the age of fifty years they shall withdraw from the duty of the service and serve no more.26They minister to their brothers in the tent of meeting by keeping guard, but they shall do no service. Thus shall you do to the Levites in assigning their duties.” (Nu 1:53)