Numbers 15; Numbers 16; Mark 6:1-29

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Numbers 15

1 The LORD said to Moses,
2 "Speak to the Israelites and tell them: Once you're settled in the land I'm giving you,
3 you may bring offerings by fire to the LORD. They may be burnt offerings or any other kind of sacrifice. They may be offered to fulfill a vow, as a freewill offering, or as one of your festival offerings. They may be cattle, sheep, or goats--offerings that are a soothing aroma to the LORD.
4 Whoever brings the offering must also give the LORD a grain offering of eight cups of flour mixed with one quart of olive oil.
5 With each sheep or goat for the burnt offering or any other sacrifice, also give an offering of one quart of wine.
6 "With a ram, give a grain offering of 16 cups of flour mixed with 1¼ quarts of oil
7 and an offering of 1¼ quarts of wine. Offer them as a soothing aroma to the LORD.
8 "Suppose you sacrifice a young bull as a burnt offering to the LORD or make any other kind of sacrifice--to keep a vow or as a fellowship offering.
9 Offer with the young bull a grain offering of 24 cups of flour mixed with two quarts of olive oil.
10 Also give an offering of two quarts of wine. It is an offering by fire, a soothing aroma to the LORD.
11 Do this for each bull, each ram, and each sheep or goat.
12 Do it for each animal, however many you sacrifice.
13 All native-born Israelites must do it this way when they bring an offering by fire, a soothing aroma to the LORD.
14 "Suppose foreigners are visiting you or living among you in future generations. If they bring an offering by fire, a soothing aroma to the LORD, they must do as you do.
15 There is one law for the whole assembly: for you and foreigners who are living with you. It is a permanent law for future generations. As far as the LORD is concerned, you and foreigners are the same.
16 The instructions and rules are the same for you as well as foreigners who are living with you."
17 The LORD said to Moses,
18 "Speak to the Israelites and tell them: When you enter the land where I'm taking you
19 and eat any of the food from the land, give some of it as a contribution to the LORD.
20 Shape one part of your dough into a ring the same way you do with the contribution you make from the threshing floor.
21 For generations to come, you must give one part of your dough as a contribution to the LORD.
22 "Suppose you unintentionally do something wrong by not obeying all these commands the LORD gave Moses.
23 (Everything the LORD commanded you through Moses holds as true for generations to come as it did the day the LORD gave the commands.)
24 If it was unintentional and no one else knows about it, the whole community must sacrifice a young bull as a burnt offering, a soothing aroma to the LORD, along with the proper grain and wine offerings, and a male goat as an offering for sin.
25 The priest will make peace with the LORD for the whole community of Israel. Then they will be forgiven because the wrongdoing was unintentional and they brought these two offerings to the LORD for their sin: an offering by fire and an offering for sin.
26 So the whole community of Israel will be forgiven, including foreigners who are living among them, since all the people were involved in the unintentional wrongdoing.
27 "If one person unintentionally does something wrong, a one-year-old female goat must be sacrificed as an offering for sin.
28 The priest will offer the sacrifice to make peace with the LORD for that person, and that person will be forgiven.
29 You must give the same instructions to everyone who does something wrong unintentionally, whether they are native-born Israelites or not.
30 "But any native-born Israelite or foreigner who deliberately does something wrong insults the LORD and must be excluded from the people.
31 That person has despised the word of the LORD and broken the LORD's command. He must be excluded completely. He remains guilty."
32 While the Israelites were in the desert, they found a man gathering wood on the day of worship.
33 Those who found him gathering wood brought him to Moses and Aaron and the whole community.
34 They kept him in custody until they decided what to do with him.
35 Then the LORD said to Moses, "This man must be put to death. The whole community must take him outside the camp and stone him."
36 So the whole community took him outside the camp and stoned him to death, as the LORD commanded Moses.
37 The LORD said to Moses,
38 "Speak to the Israelites and tell them: For generations to come they must wear tassels on the corners of their clothes with violet threads in each tassel.
39 Whenever you look at the threads in the tassel, you will remember all the LORD's commands and obey them. Then you won't do whatever you want and go after whatever you see, as if you were chasing after prostitutes.
40 You will remember to obey all my commands, and you will be holy to your God.
41 I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of Egypt to be your God. I am the LORD your God."

Numbers 16

1 Korah (son of Izhar), Dathan and Abiram (sons of Eliab), and On (son of Peleth) dared to challenge Moses. (Korah was a descendant of Kohath and Levi. Dathan, Abiram, and On were descendants of Reuben.)
2 These four men were joined by 250 Israelite men, well-known leaders of the community, chosen by the assembly.
3 They came together to confront Moses and Aaron and said to them, "You've gone far enough! Everyone in the whole community is holy, and the LORD is among them. Why do you set yourselves above the LORD's assembly?"
4 As soon as Moses heard this, he bowed with his face touching the ground.
5 Then he said to Korah and all his followers, "In the morning the LORD will show who belongs to him, who is holy, and who it is that he will allow to come near him. Only the person the LORD chooses will be allowed to come near him.
6 Korah, you and all your followers must do this tomorrow: Take incense burners,
7 and put burning coals and incense in them in the LORD's presence. Then the LORD will choose the man who is holy. You've gone far enough!"
8 Moses also said to Korah, "Listen, you Levites!
9 Isn't it enough for you that the God of Israel has separated you from the rest of the community of Israel? The LORD has brought you near himself to do the work for his tent and stand in front of the community to serve them.
10 He has brought you and all the other Levites near himself, but now you demand to be priests.
11 So you and all your followers have joined forces against the LORD! Who is Aaron that you should complain about him?"
12 Then Moses sent for Dathan and Abiram, sons of Eliab. But they said, "We won't come!
13 Isn't it enough that you brought us out of a land flowing with milk and honey only to kill us in the desert? Do you also have to order us around?
14 Certainly you haven't brought us into a land flowing with milk and honey or given us any fields and vineyards to own. Do you think you can still pull the wool over our eyes? We won't come."
15 Moses became angry and said to the LORD, "Don't accept their offering. I haven't taken anything from them, not even a donkey. And I haven't mistreated any of them."
16 Moses said to Korah, "Tomorrow you and all your followers must come into the LORD's presence. Aaron will also be there with you.
17 Each man will take his incense burner and put incense in it. They will offer all 250 incense burners to the LORD. Then you and Aaron offer your incense burners."
18 So each man took his incense burner, put burning coals and incense in it, and stood with Moses and Aaron at the entrance to the tent of meeting.
19 When Korah had gathered all his followers--those who opposed Moses and Aaron--at the entrance to the tent of meeting, the glory of the LORD appeared to the whole group.
20 The LORD said to Moses and Aaron,
21 "Move away from these men, and I'll destroy them in an instant."
22 Immediately, they bowed with their faces touching the ground and said, "O God, you are the God who gives the breath of life to everyone! If one man sins, will you be angry with the whole community?"
23 Then the LORD said to Moses,
24 "Tell the community: Move away from the tents of Korah, Dathan, and Abiram."
25 Moses got up and went to Dathan and Abiram, and the leaders of Israel followed him.
26 He said to the community, "Move away from the tents of these wicked men. Don't touch anything that belongs to them, or you'll be swept away because of all their sins."
27 So they moved away from the tents of Korah, Dathan, and Abiram. Dathan and Abiram had come out and were standing at the entrances to their tents with their wives and children.
28 Moses said, "This is how you will know that the LORD sent me to do all these things and that it wasn't my idea:
29 If these men die like all other people--if they die a natural death--then the LORD hasn't sent me.
30 But if the LORD does something totally new--if the ground opens up, swallows them and everything that belongs to them, and they go down alive to their graves--then you'll know that these men have treated the LORD with contempt."
31 As soon as he had finished saying all this, the ground under them split,
32 and the earth opened up to swallow them, their families, the followers of Korah, and all their property.
33 They went down alive to their graves with everything that belonged to them. The ground covered them, and so they disappeared from the assembly.
34 All the Israelites around them ran away when they heard their screams. They thought the ground would swallow them, too.
35 Fire came from the LORD and consumed the 250 men who were offering incense.
36 Then the LORD said to Moses,
37 "Tell Eleazar, son of the priest Aaron, to take the incense burners out of the fire and scatter the coals and incense somewhere else, because the incense burners have become holy.
38 The incense burners of these men who sinned and lost their lives are holy, because they were offered to the LORD. Hammer them into thin metal sheets to cover the altar. This will be a sign to the Israelites."
39 So the priest Eleazar took the bronze incense burners which had been brought by those who had been burned to death. The incense burners were then hammered into thin metal sheets to cover the altar,
40 following the command that the LORD had given through Moses. The bronze-covered altar will remind Israel that no one but a descendant of Aaron can come near to burn incense to the LORD. Everyone else will die like Korah and his followers.
41 The next day the whole community of Israel complained to Moses and Aaron. They said, "You have killed the LORD's people."
42 The community came together to confront Moses and Aaron. When they turned toward the tent of meeting, they saw the smoke covering it, and the glory of the LORD appeared.
43 Then Moses and Aaron went to the front of the tent of meeting.
44 The LORD said to Moses,
45 "Get away from these people, and let me destroy them in an instant!" Immediately, they bowed with their faces touching the ground.
46 Moses said to Aaron, "Take your incense burner, put burning coals from the altar and incense in it, and go quickly into the community to make peace with the LORD for the people. The LORD is showing his anger; a plague has started."
47 Aaron took his incense burner, as Moses told him, and ran into the middle of the assembly, because the plague had already begun among the people. He put incense on the incense burner to make peace with the LORD for the people.
48 He stood between those who had died and those who were still alive, and the plague stopped.
49 Still, 14,700 died from the plague in addition to those who had died because of Korah.
50 By the time Aaron came back to Moses at the entrance to the tent of meeting, the plague had stopped.

Mark 6:1-29

1 Jesus left that place and went to his hometown. His disciples followed him.
2 When the day of worship came, he began to teach in the synagogue. He amazed many who heard him. They asked, "Where did this man get these ideas? Who gave him this kind of wisdom and the ability to do such great miracles?
3 Isn't this the carpenter, the son of Mary, and the brother of James, Joseph, Judas, and Simon? Aren't his sisters here with us?" So they took offense at him.
4 But Jesus told them, "The only place a prophet isn't honored is in his hometown, among his relatives, and in his own house."
5 He couldn't work any miracles there except to lay his hands on a few sick people and cure them.
6 Their unbelief amazed him. Then Jesus went around to the villages and taught.
7 He called the twelve apostles, sent them out two by two, and gave them authority over evil spirits.
8 He instructed them to take nothing along on the trip except a walking stick. They were not to take any food, a traveling bag, or money in their pockets.
9 They could wear sandals but could not take along a change of clothes.
10 He told them, "Whenever you go into a home, stay there until you're ready to leave that place.
11 Wherever people don't welcome you or listen to you, leave and shake the dust from your feet as a warning to them."
12 So the apostles went and told people that they should turn to God and change the way they think and act.
13 They also forced many demons out of people and poured oil on many who were sick to cure them.
14 King Herod heard about Jesus, because Jesus' name had become well-known. Some people were saying, "John the Baptizer has come back to life. That's why he has the power to perform these miracles."
15 Others said, "He is Elijah." Still others said, "He is a prophet like one of the other prophets."
16 But when Herod heard about it, he said, "I had John's head cut off, and he has come back to life!"
17 Herod had sent men who had arrested John, tied him up, and put him in prison. Herod did that for Herodias, whom he had married. (She used to be his brother Philip's wife.)
18 John had been telling Herod, "It's not right for you to be married to your brother's wife."
19 So Herodias held a grudge against John and wanted to kill him. But she wasn't allowed to do it
20 because Herod was afraid of John. Herod knew that John was a fair and holy man, so he protected him. When he listened to John, he would become very disturbed, and yet he liked to listen to him.
21 An opportunity finally came on Herod's birthday. Herod gave a dinner for his top officials, army officers, and the most important people of Galilee.
22 His daughter, that is, Herodias' daughter, came in and danced. Herod and his guests were delighted with her. The king told the girl, "Ask me for anything you want, and I'll give it to you."
23 He swore an oath to her: "I'll give you anything you ask for, up to half of my kingdom."
24 So she went out and asked her mother, "What should I ask for?" Her mother said, "Ask for the head of John the Baptizer."
25 So the girl hurried back to the king with her request. She said, "I want you to give me the head of John the Baptizer on a platter at once."
26 The king deeply regretted his promise. But because of his oath and his guests, he didn't want to refuse her.
27 Immediately, the king sent a guard and ordered him to bring John's head. The guard cut off John's head in prison.
28 Then he brought the head on a platter and gave it to the girl, and the girl gave it to her mother.
29 When John's disciples heard about this, they came for his body and laid it in a tomb.