The LORD said to Moses,
"Speak to the Israelites and say to them: 'After you enter the land I am giving you as a home
and you present to the LORD offerings made by fire, from the herd or the flock, as an aroma pleasing to the LORD--whether burnt offerings or sacrifices, for special vows or freewill offerings or festival offerings--
then the one who brings his offering shall present to the LORD a grain offering of a tenth of an ephah of fine flour mixed with a quarter of a hin of oil.
With each lamb for the burnt offering or the sacrifice, prepare a quarter of a hin of wine as a drink offering.
" 'With a ram prepare a grain offering of two-tenths of an ephah of fine flour mixed with a third of a hin of oil,
and a third of a hin of wine as a drink offering. Offer it as an aroma pleasing to the LORD.
" 'When you prepare a young bull as a burnt offering or sacrifice, for a special vow or a fellowship offering to the LORD,
bring with the bull a grain offering of three-tenths of an ephah of fine flour mixed with half a hin of oil.
Also bring half a hin of wine as a drink offering. It will be an offering made by fire, an aroma pleasing to the LORD.
Each bull or ram, each lamb or young goat, is to be prepared in this manner.
Do this for each one, for as many as you prepare.
" 'Everyone who is native-born must do these things in this way when he brings an offering made by fire as an aroma pleasing to the LORD.
For the generations to come, whenever an alien or anyone else living among you presents an offering made by fire as an aroma pleasing to the LORD, he must do exactly as you do.
The community is to have the same rules for you and for the alien living among you; this is a lasting ordinance for the generations to come. You and the alien shall be the same before the LORD:
The same laws and regulations will apply both to you and to the alien living among you.' "
The LORD said to Moses,
"Speak to the Israelites and say to them: 'When you enter the land to which I am taking you
and you eat the food of the land, present a portion as an offering to the LORD.
Present a cake from the first of your ground meal and present it as an offering from the threshing floor.
Throughout the generations to come you are to give this offering to the LORD from the first of your ground meal.
" 'Now if you unintentionally fail to keep any of these commands the LORD gave Moses--
any of the LORD's commands to you through him, from the day the LORD gave them and continuing through the generations to come--
and if this is done unintentionally without the community being aware of it, then the whole community is to offer a young bull for a burnt offering as an aroma pleasing to the LORD, along with its prescribed grain offering and drink offering, and a male goat for a sin offering.
The priest is to make atonement for the whole Israelite community, and they will be forgiven, for it was not intentional and they have brought to the LORD for their wrong an offering made by fire and a sin offering.
The whole Israelite community and the aliens living among them will be forgiven, because all the people were involved in the unintentional wrong.
" 'But if just one person sins unintentionally, he must bring a year-old female goat for a sin offering.
The priest is to make atonement before the LORD for the one who erred by sinning unintentionally, and when atonement has been made for him, he will be forgiven.
One and the same law applies to everyone who sins unintentionally, whether he is a native-born Israelite or an alien.
" 'But anyone who sins defiantly, whether native-born or alien, blasphemes the LORD, and that person must be cut off from his people.
Because he has despised the LORD's word and broken his commands, that person must surely be cut off; his guilt remains on him.' "
While the Israelites were in the desert, a man was found gathering wood on the Sabbath day.
Those who found him gathering wood brought him to Moses and Aaron and the whole assembly,
and they kept him in custody, because it was not clear what should be done to him.
Then the LORD said to Moses, "The man must die. The whole assembly must stone him outside the camp."
So the assembly took him outside the camp and stoned him to death, as the LORD commanded Moses.
The LORD said to Moses,
"Speak to the Israelites and say to them: 'Throughout the generations to come you are to make tassels on the corners of your garments, with a blue cord on each tassel.
You will have these tassels to look at and so you will remember all the commands of the LORD, that you may obey them and not prostitute yourselves by going after the lusts of your own hearts and eyes.
Then you will remember to obey all my commands and will be consecrated to your God.
I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of Egypt to be your God. I am the LORD your God.' "
Korah son of Izhar, the son of Kohath, the son of Levi, and certain Reubenites--Dathan and Abiram, sons of Eliab, and On son of Peleth--became insolent
and rose up against Moses. With them were 250 Israelite men, well-known community leaders who had been appointed members of the council.
They came as a group to oppose Moses and Aaron and said to them, "You have gone too far! The whole community is holy, every one of them, and the LORD is with them. Why then do you set yourselves above the LORD's assembly?"
When Moses heard this, he fell facedown.
Then he said to Korah and all his followers: "In the morning the LORD will show who belongs to him and who is holy, and he will have that person come near him. The man he chooses he will cause to come near him.
You, Korah, and all your followers are to do this: Take censers
and tomorrow put fire and incense in them before the LORD. The man the LORD chooses will be the one who is holy. You Levites have gone too far!"
Moses also said to Korah, "Now listen, you Levites!
Isn't it enough for you that the God of Israel has separated you from the rest of the Israelite community and brought you near himself to do the work at the LORD's tabernacle and to stand before the community and minister to them?
He has brought you and all your fellow Levites near himself, but now you are trying to get the priesthood too.
It is against the LORD that you and all your followers have banded together. Who is Aaron that you should grumble against him?"
Then Moses summoned Dathan and Abiram, the sons of Eliab. But they said, "We will not come!
Isn't it enough that you have brought us up out of a land flowing with milk and honey to kill us in the desert? And now you also want to lord it over us?
Moreover, you haven't brought us into a land flowing with milk and honey or given us an inheritance of fields and vineyards. Will you gouge out the eyes of these men? No, we will not come!"
Then Moses became very angry and said to the LORD, "Do not accept their offering. I have not taken so much as a donkey from them, nor have I wronged any of them."
Moses said to Korah, "You and all your followers are to appear before the LORD tomorrow--you and they and Aaron.
Each man is to take his censer and put incense in it--250 censers in all--and present it before the LORD. You and Aaron are to present your censers also."
So each man took his censer, put fire and incense in it, and stood with Moses and Aaron at the entrance to the Tent of Meeting.
When Korah had gathered all his followers in opposition to them at the entrance to the Tent of Meeting, the glory of the LORD appeared to the entire assembly.
The LORD said to Moses and Aaron,
"Separate yourselves from this assembly so I can put an end to them at once."
But Moses and Aaron fell facedown and cried out, "O God, God of the spirits of all mankind, will you be angry with the entire assembly when only one man sins?"
Then the LORD said to Moses,
"Say to the assembly, 'Move away from the tents of Korah, Dathan and Abiram.' "
Moses got up and went to Dathan and Abiram, and the elders of Israel followed him.
He warned the assembly, "Move back from the tents of these wicked men! Do not touch anything belonging to them, or you will be swept away because of all their sins."
So they moved away from the tents of Korah, Dathan and Abiram. Dathan and Abiram had come out and were standing with their wives, children and little ones at the entrances to their tents.
Then Moses said, "This is how you will know that the LORD has sent me to do all these things and that it was not my idea:
If these men die a natural death and experience only what usually happens to men, then the LORD has not sent me.
But if the LORD brings about something totally new, and the earth opens its mouth and swallows them, with everything that belongs to them, and they go down alive into the grave, then you will know that these men have treated the LORD with contempt."
As soon as he finished saying all this, the ground under them split apart
and the earth opened its mouth and swallowed them, with their households and all Korah's men and all their possessions.
They went down alive into the grave, with everything they owned; the earth closed over them, and they perished and were gone from the community.
At their cries, all the Israelites around them fled, shouting, "The earth is going to swallow us too!"
And fire came out from the LORD and consumed the 250 men who were offering the incense.
The LORD said to Moses,
"Tell Eleazar son of Aaron, the priest, to take the censers out of the smoldering remains and scatter the coals some distance away, for the censers are holy--
the censers of the men who sinned at the cost of their lives. Hammer the censers into sheets to overlay the altar, for they were presented before the LORD and have become holy. Let them be a sign to the Israelites."
So Eleazar the priest collected the bronze censers brought by those who had been burned up, and he had them hammered out to overlay the altar,
as the LORD directed him through Moses. This was to remind the Israelites that no one except a descendant of Aaron should come to burn incense before the LORD, or he would become like Korah and his followers.
The next day the whole Israelite community grumbled against Moses and Aaron. "You have killed the LORD's people," they said.
But when the assembly gathered in opposition to Moses and Aaron and turned toward the Tent of Meeting, suddenly the cloud covered it and the glory of the LORD appeared.
Then Moses and Aaron went to the front of the Tent of Meeting,
and the LORD said to Moses,
"Get away from this assembly so I can put an end to them at once." And they fell facedown.
Then Moses said to Aaron, "Take your censer and put incense in it, along with fire from the altar, and hurry to the assembly to make atonement for them. Wrath has come out from the LORD; the plague has started."
So Aaron did as Moses said, and ran into the midst of the assembly. The plague had already started among the people, but Aaron offered the incense and made atonement for them.
He stood between the living and the dead, and the plague stopped.
But 14,700 people died from the plague, in addition to those who had died because of Korah.
Then Aaron returned to Moses at the entrance to the Tent of Meeting, for the plague had stopped.
In the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who will judge the living and the dead, and in view of his appearing and his kingdom, I give you this charge:
Preach the Word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage--with great patience and careful instruction.
For the time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear.
They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths.
But you, keep your head in all situations, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, discharge all the duties of your ministry.
For I am already being poured out like a drink offering, and the time has come for my departure.
I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.
Now there is in store for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day--and not only to me, but also to all who have longed for his appearing.
Do your best to come to me quickly,
for Demas, because he loved this world, has deserted me and has gone to Thessalonica. Crescens has gone to Galatia, and Titus to Dalmatia.
Only Luke is with me. Get Mark and bring him with you, because he is helpful to me in my ministry.
I sent Tychicus to Ephesus.
When you come, bring the cloak that I left with Carpus at Troas, and my scrolls, especially the parchments.
Alexander the metalworker did me a great deal of harm. The Lord will repay him for what he has done.
You too should be on your guard against him, because he strongly opposed our message.
At my first defense, no one came to my support, but everyone deserted me. May it not be held against them.
But the Lord stood at my side and gave me strength, so that through me the message might be fully proclaimed and all the Gentiles might hear it. And I was delivered from the lion's mouth.
The Lord will rescue me from every evil attack and will bring me safely to his heavenly kingdom. To him be glory for ever and ever. Amen.
Greet Priscilla and Aquila and the household of Onesiphorus.
Erastus stayed in Corinth, and I left Trophimus sick in Miletus.
Do your best to get here before winter. Eubulus greets you, and so do Pudens, Linus, Claudia and all the brothers.
The Lord be with your spirit. Grace be with you.