All the Israelites twenty years old or more who were able to serve in Israel's army were counted according to their families.
The total number was 603,550.
The families of the tribe of Levi, however, were not counted along with the others.
The LORD had said to Moses:
"You must not count the tribe of Levi or include them in the census of the other Israelites.
Instead, appoint the Levites to be in charge of the tabernacle of the Testimony--over all its furnishings and everything belonging to it. They are to carry the tabernacle and all its furnishings; they are to take care of it and encamp around it.
Whenever the tabernacle is to move, the Levites are to take it down, and whenever the tabernacle is to be set up, the Levites shall do it. Anyone else who goes near it shall be put to death.
The Israelites are to set up their tents by divisions, each man in his own camp under his own standard.
The Levites, however, are to set up their tents around the tabernacle of the Testimony so that wrath will not fall on the Israelite community. The Levites are to be responsible for the care of the tabernacle of the Testimony."
The Israelites did all this just as the LORD commanded Moses.
The LORD said to Moses and Aaron:
"The Israelites are to camp around the Tent of Meeting some distance from it, each man under his standard with the banners of his family."
On the east, toward the sunrise, the divisions of the camp of Judah are to encamp under their standard. The leader of the people of Judah is Nahshon son of Amminadab.
His division numbers 74,600.
The tribe of Issachar will camp next to them. The leader of the people of Issachar is Nethanel son of Zuar.
His division numbers 54,400.
The tribe of Zebulun will be next. The leader of the people of Zebulun is Eliab son of Helon.
His division numbers 57,400.
All the men assigned to the camp of Judah, according to their divisions, number 186,400. They will set out first.
On the south will be the divisions of the camp of Reuben under their standard. The leader of the people of Reuben is Elizur son of Shedeur.
His division numbers 46,500.
The tribe of Simeon will camp next to them. The leader of the people of Simeon is Shelumiel son of Zurishaddai.
His division numbers 59,300.
The tribe of Gad will be next. The leader of the people of Gad is Eliasaph son of Deuel.
His division numbers 45,650.
All the men assigned to the camp of Reuben, according to their divisions, number 151,450. They will set out second.
Then the Tent of Meeting and the camp of the Levites will set out in the middle of the camps. They will set out in the same order as they encamp, each in his own place under his standard.
On the west will be the divisions of the camp of Ephraim under their standard. The leader of the people of Ephraim is Elishama son of Ammihud.
His division numbers 40,500.
The tribe of Manasseh will be next to them. The leader of the people of Manasseh is Gamaliel son of Pedahzur.
His division numbers 32,200.
The tribe of Benjamin will be next. The leader of the people of Benjamin is Abidan son of Gideoni.
His division numbers 35,400.
All the men assigned to the camp of Ephraim, according to their divisions, number 108,100. They will set out third.
On the north will be the divisions of the camp of Dan, under their standard. The leader of the people of Dan is Ahiezer son of Ammishaddai.
His division numbers 62,700.
The tribe of Asher will camp next to them. The leader of the people of Asher is Pagiel son of Ocran.
His division numbers 41,500.
The tribe of Naphtali will be next. The leader of the people of Naphtali is Ahira son of Enan.
His division numbers 53,400.
All the men assigned to the camp of Dan number 157,600. They will set out last, under their standards.
These are the Israelites, counted according to their families. All those in the camps, by their divisions, number 603,550.
The Levites, however, were not counted along with the other Israelites, as the LORD commanded Moses.
So the Israelites did everything the LORD commanded Moses; that is the way they encamped under their standards, and that is the way they set out, each with his clan and family.
This is the account of the family of Aaron and Moses at the time the LORD talked with Moses on Mount Sinai.
The names of the sons of Aaron were Nadab the firstborn and Abihu, Eleazar and Ithamar.
Those were the names of Aaron's sons, the anointed priests, who were ordained to serve as priests.
Nadab and Abihu, however, fell dead before the LORD when they made an offering with unauthorized fire before him in the Desert of Sinai. They had no sons; so only Eleazar and Ithamar served as priests during the lifetime of their father Aaron.
The LORD said to Moses,
"Bring the tribe of Levi and present them to Aaron the priest to assist him.
They are to perform duties for him and for the whole community at the Tent of Meeting by doing the work of the tabernacle.
They are to take care of all the furnishings of the Tent of Meeting, fulfilling the obligations of the Israelites by doing the work of the tabernacle.
Give the Levites to Aaron and his sons; they are the Israelites who are to be given wholly to him.
Appoint Aaron and his sons to serve as priests; anyone else who approaches the sanctuary must be put to death."
The LORD also said to Moses,
"I have taken the Levites from among the Israelites in place of the first male offspring of every Israelite woman. The Levites are mine,