The Lord spoke to Moses after the death of the two sons of Aaron who were killed when they offered unholy fire to the Lord.
He said, "Tell your brother Aaron that only at the proper time is he to go behind the curtain into the Most Holy Place, because that is where I appear in a cloud above the lid on the Covenant Box. If he disobeys, he will be killed.
He may enter the Most Holy Place only after he has brought a young bull for a sin offering and a ram for a burnt offering."
Then the Lord gave the following instructions. Before Aaron goes into the Most Holy Place, he must take a bath and put on the priestly garments: the linen robe and shorts, the belt, and the turban.
The community of Israel shall give Aaron two male goats for a sin offering and a ram for a burnt offering.
He shall offer a bull as a sacrifice to take away his own sins and those of his family.
Then he shall take the two goats to the entrance of the Tent of the Lord's presence.
There he shall draw lots, using two stones, one marked "for the Lord" and the other "for Azazel."
Aaron shall sacrifice the goat chosen by lot for the Lord and offer it as a sin offering.
The goat chosen for Azazel shall be presented alive to the Lord and sent off into the desert to Azazel, in order to take away the sins of the people.
When Aaron sacrifices the bull as the sin offering for himself and his family,
he shall take a fire pan full of burning coals from the altar and two handfuls of fine incense and bring them into the Most Holy Place.
There in the Lord's presence he shall put the incense on the fire, and the smoke of the incense will hide the lid of the Covenant Box so that he will not see it and die.
He shall take some of the bull's blood and with his finger sprinkle it on the front of the lid and then sprinkle some of it seven times in front of the Covenant Box.
After that, he shall kill the goat for the sin offering for the people, bring its blood into the Most Holy Place, and sprinkle it on the lid and then in front of the Covenant Box, as he did with the bull's blood.
In this way he will perform the ritual to purify the Most Holy Place from the uncleanness of the people of Israel and from all their sins. He must do this to the Tent, because it stands in the middle of the camp, which is ritually unclean.
From the time Aaron enters the Most Holy Place to perform the ritual of purification until he comes out, there must be no one in the Tent. When he has performed the ritual for himself, his family, and the whole community,
he must then go out to the altar for burnt offerings and purify it. He must take some of the bull's blood and some of the goat's blood and put it all over the projections at the corners of the altar.
With his finger he must sprinkle some of the blood on the altar seven times. In this way he is to purify it from the sins of the people of Israel and make it holy.
When Aaron has finished performing the ritual to purify the Most Holy Place, the rest of the Tent of the Lord's presence, and the altar, he shall present to the Lord the live goat chosen for Azazel.
He shall put both of his hands on the goat's head and confess over it all the evils, sins, and rebellions of the people of Israel, and so transfer them to the goat's head. Then the goat is to be driven off into the desert by someone appointed to do it.
The goat will carry all their sins away with him into some uninhabited land.
Then Aaron shall go into the Tent, take off the priestly garments that he had put on before entering the Most Holy Place, and leave them there.
He must take a bath in a holy place and put on his own clothes. After that, he shall go out and offer the burnt offering to remove his own sins and those of the people.
He shall burn on the altar the fat of the animal for the sin offering.
The man who drove the goat into the desert to Azazel must wash his clothes and take a bath before he comes back into camp.
The bull and the goat used for the sin offering, whose blood was brought into the Most Holy Place to take away sin, shall be carried outside the camp and burned. Skin, meat, and intestines shall all be burned.
The one who burns them must wash his clothes and take a bath before he returns to camp.
The following regulations are to be observed for all time to come. On the tenth day of the seventh month the Israelites and the foreigners living among them must fast and must not do any work.
On that day the ritual is to be performed to purify them from all their sins, so that they will be ritually clean.
That day is to be a very holy day, one on which they fast and do no work at all. These regulations are to be observed for all time to come.
The High Priest, properly ordained and consecrated to succeed his father, is to perform the ritual of purification. He shall put on the priestly garments
and perform the ritual to purify the Most Holy Place, the rest of the Tent of the Lord's presence, the altar, the priests, and all the people of the community.
These regulations are to be observed for all time to come. This ritual must be performed once a year to purify the people of Israel from all their sins. So Moses did as the Lord had commanded.
The Lord commanded Moses
to give Aaron and his sons and all the people of Israel the following regulations.
Any Israelites who kill a cow or a sheep or a goat as an offering to the Lord anywhere except at the entrance of the Tent of the Lord's presence have broken the Law. They have shed blood and shall no longer be considered God's people.
The meaning of this command is that the people of Israel shall now bring to the Lord the animals which they used to kill in the open country. They shall now bring them to the priest at the entrance of the Tent and kill them as fellowship offerings.
The priest shall throw the blood against the sides of the altar at the entrance of the Tent and burn the fat to produce an odor that is pleasing to the Lord.
The people of Israel must no longer be unfaithful to the Lord by killing their animals in the fields as sacrifices to the goat demons. The people of Israel must keep this regulation for all time to come.
Any Israelites or any foreigners living in the community who offer a burnt offering or any other sacrifice
as an offering to the Lord anywhere except at the entrance of the Tent shall no longer be considered God's people.
If any Israelites or any foreigners living in the community eat meat with blood still in it, the Lord will turn against them and no longer consider them his people.
The life of every living thing is in the blood, and that is why the Lord has commanded that all blood be poured out on the altar to take away the people's sins. Blood, which is life, takes away sins.
That is why the Lord has told the people of Israel that neither they nor any foreigner living among them shall eat any meat with blood still in it.
If any Israelites or any foreigners living in the community catch an animal or a bird which is ritually clean, they must pour its blood out on the ground and cover it with dirt.
The life of every living thing is in the blood, and that is why the Lord has told the people of Israel that they shall not eat any meat with blood still in it and that anyone who does so will no longer be considered one of his people.
Any people, Israelites or foreigners, who eat meat from an animal that has died a natural death or has been killed by wild animals must wash their clothes, take a bath, and wait until evening before they are ritually clean.
If they do not, they must suffer the consequences.
The Lord told Moses
to say to the people of Israel, "I am the Lord your God.
Do not follow the practices of the people of Egypt, where you once lived, or of the people in the land of Canaan, where I am now taking you.
Obey my laws and do what I command. I am the Lord your God.
Follow the practices and the laws that I give you; you will save your life by doing so. I am the Lord."
The Lord gave the following regulations. Do not have sexual intercourse with any of your relatives.
Do not disgrace your father by having intercourse with your mother. You must not disgrace your own mother.
Do not disgrace your father by having intercourse with any of his other wives.
Do not have intercourse with your sister or your stepsister, whether or not she was brought up in the same house with you.
Do not have intercourse with your granddaughter; that would be a disgrace to you.
Do not have intercourse with a half sister; she, too, is your sister.
Do not have intercourse with an aunt, whether she is your father's sister or your mother's sister.
Do not have intercourse with your uncle's wife; she, too, is your aunt.
Do not have intercourse with your daughter-in-law
or with your brother's wife.
Do not have intercourse with the daughter or granddaughter of a woman with whom you have had intercourse; they may be related to you, and that would be incest.
Do not take your wife's sister as one of your wives, as long as your wife is living.
Do not have intercourse with a woman during her monthly period, because she is ritually unclean.
Do not have intercourse with another man's wife; that would make you ritually unclean.
Do not hand over any of your children to be used in the worship of the god Molech, because that would bring disgrace on the name of God, the Lord.
No man is to have sexual relations with another man; God hates that.
No man or woman is to have sexual relations with an animal; that perversion makes you ritually unclean.
Do not make yourselves unclean by any of these acts, for that is how the pagans made themselves unclean, those pagans who lived in the land before you and whom the Lord is driving out so that you can go in.
Their actions made the land unclean, and so the Lord is punishing the land and making it reject the people who lived there.
They did all these disgusting things and made the land unclean, but you must not do them. All of you, whether Israelites or foreigners living with you, must keep the Lord's laws and commands,
and then the land will not reject you, as it rejected the pagans who lived there before you.
You know that whoever does any of these disgusting things will no longer be considered one of God's people.
And the Lord said, "Obey the commands I give and do not follow the practices of the people who lived in the land before you, and do not make yourselves unclean by doing any of these things. I am the Lord your God."