Numbers 18
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Listen to this chapter in Hebrew:

1  And Hashem said unto Aharon: ‘Thou and thy sons and thy fathers’ house with thee shall bear the iniquity of the sanctuary; and thou and thy sons with thee shall bear the iniquity of your priesthood.

א  וַיֹּאמֶר יְהוָה אֶל אַהֲרֹן אַתָּה וּבָנֶיךָ וּבֵית אָבִיךָ אִתָּךְ תִּשְׂאוּ אֶת עֲו ֹן הַמִּקְדָּשׁ וְאַתָּה וּבָנֶיךָ אִתָּךְ תִּשְׂאוּ אֶת עֲו ֹן כְּהֻנַּתְכֶם.

2  And thy brethren also, the tribe of Levi, the tribe of thy father, bring thou near with thee, that they may be joined unto thee, and minister unto thee, thou and thy sons with thee being before the tent of the testimony.

ב  וְגַם אֶת אַחֶיךָ מַטֵּה לֵוִי שֵׁבֶט אָבִיךָ הַקְרֵב אִתָּךְ וְיִלָּווּ עָלֶיךָ וִישָׁרְתוּךָ וְאַתָּה וּבָנֶיךָ אִתָּךְ לִפְנֵי אֹהֶל הָעֵדֻת.

3  And they shall keep thy charge, and the charge of all the Tent; only they shall not come nigh unto the holy furniture and unto the altar, that they die not, neither they, nor ye.

ג  וְשָׁמְרוּ מִשְׁמַרְתְּךָ וּמִשְׁמֶרֶת כָּל הָאֹהֶל אַךְ אֶל כְּלֵי הַקֹּדֶשׁ וְאֶל הַמִּזְבֵּחַ לֹא יִקְרָבוּ וְלֹא יָמֻתוּ גַם הֵם גַּם אַתֶּם.

4  And they shall be joined unto thee, and keep the charge of the Tent of Meeting, whatsoever the service of the Tent may be; but a common man shall not draw nigh unto you.

ד  וְנִלְווּ עָלֶיךָ וְשָׁמְרוּ אֶת מִשְׁמֶרֶת אֹהֶל מוֹעֵד לְכֹל עֲבֹדַת הָאֹהֶל וְזָר לֹא יִקְרַב אֲלֵיכֶם.

5  And ye shall keep the charge of the holy things, and the charge of the altar, that there be wrath no more upon B’nei Yisrael.

ה  וּשְׁמַרְתֶּם אֵת מִשְׁמֶרֶת הַקֹּדֶשׁ וְאֵת מִשְׁמֶרֶת הַמִּזְבֵּחַ וְלֹא יִהְיֶה עוֹד קֶצֶף עַל בְּנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל.

6  And I, behold, I have taken your brethren the Leviim from among B’nei Yisrael; for you they are given as a gift unto Hashem, to do the service of the Tent of Meeting.

ו  וַאֲנִי הִנֵּה לָקַחְתִּי אֶת אֲחֵיכֶם הַלְוִיִּם מִתּוֹךְ בְּנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל לָכֶם מַתָּנָה נְתֻנִים לַיהוָה לַעֲבֹד אֶת עֲבֹדַת אֹהֶל מוֹעֵד.

7  And thou and thy sons with thee shall keep your priesthood in everything that pertaineth to the altar, and to that within the veil; and ye shall serve; I give you the priesthood as a service of gift; and the common man that draweth nigh shall be put to death.’

ז  וְאַתָּה וּבָנֶיךָ אִתְּךָ תִּשְׁמְרוּ אֶת כְּהֻנַּתְכֶם לְכָל דְּבַר הַמִּזְבֵּחַ וּלְמִבֵּית לַפָּרֹכֶת וַעֲבַדְתֶּם עֲבֹדַת מַתָּנָה אֶתֵּן אֶת כְּהֻנַּתְכֶם וְהַזָּר הַקָּרֵב יוּמָת.

8  And Hashem spoke unto Aharon: ‘And I, behold, I have given thee the charge of My heave-offerings; even of all the hallowed things of B’nei Yisrael unto thee have I given them for a consecrated portion, and to thy sons, as a due for ever.

vai-da-BAYR a-do-NAI el a-ha-RON v-a-NEE hi-NAY na-TA-tee l’-KHA et mish-ME-ret t’-ru-mo-TAI l’-KHOL kod-SHAY v’-NAY yis-ra-AYL l’-KHA n’-ta-TEEM l’-mosh-KHAH u-l’-va-NE-kha l’-KHOK o-LAM

ח  וַיְדַבֵּר יְהוָה אֶל אַהֲרֹן וַאֲנִי הִנֵּה נָתַתִּי לְךָ אֶת מִשְׁמֶרֶת תְּרוּמֹתָי לְכָל קָדְשֵׁי בְנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל לְךָ נְתַתִּים לְמָשְׁחָה וּלְבָנֶיךָ לְחָק עוֹלָם.

18:8  Unto thee have I given them for a consecrated portion

The gifts and tithes presented to the Kohanim and Leviim are additional examples of commandments that apply only in the Land of Israel.  Like khallah (Bamidbar 15:17-21), these are gifts given to the spiritual leaders of Israel to provide physical sustenance in exchange for the spiritual sustenance they offered the people. Since they had no portion of land of their own, the Kohanim and Leviim were dependent on the rest of the nation for their physical nourishment.  Yet the work they did elevated everyone else’s existence in the Land.

Comment

9  This shall be thine of the most holy things, reserved from the fire: every offering of theirs, even every meal-offering of theirs, and every sin-offering of theirs, and every guilt-offering of theirs, which they may render unto Me, shall be most holy for thee and for thy sons.

ט  זֶה יִהְיֶה לְךָ מִקֹּדֶשׁ הַקֳּדָשִׁים מִן הָאֵשׁ כָּל קָרְבָּנָם לְכָל מִנְחָתָם וּלְכָל חַטָּאתָם וּלְכָל אֲשָׁמָם אֲשֶׁר יָשִׁיבוּ לִי קֹדֶשׁ קָדָשִׁים לְךָ הוּא וּלְבָנֶיךָ.

10  In a most holy place shalt thou eat thereof; every male may eat thereof; it shall be holy unto thee.

י  בְּקֹדֶשׁ הַקֳּדָשִׁים תֹּאכְלֶנּוּ כָּל זָכָר יֹאכַל אֹתוֹ קֹדֶשׁ יִהְיֶה לָּךְ.

11  And this is thine: the heave-offering of their gift, even all the wave-offerings of B’nei Yisrael; I have given them unto thee, and to thy sons and to thy daughters with thee, as a due for ever; every one that is clean in thy house may eat thereof.

יא  וְזֶה לְּךָ תְּרוּמַת מַתָּנָם לְכָל תְּנוּפֹת בְּנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל לְךָ נְתַתִּים וּלְבָנֶיךָ וְלִבְנֹתֶיךָ אִתְּךָ לְחָק עוֹלָם כָּל טָהוֹר בְּבֵיתְךָ יֹאכַל אֹתוֹ.

12  All the best of the oil, and all the best of the wine, and of the corn, the first part of them which they give unto Hashem, to thee have I given them.

יב  כֹּל חֵלֶב יִצְהָר וְכָל חֵלֶב תִּירוֹשׁ וְדָגָן רֵאשִׁיתָם אֲשֶׁר יִתְּנוּ לַיהוָה לְךָ נְתַתִּים.

13  The first-ripe fruits of all that is in their land, which they bring unto Hashem, shall be thine; every one that is clean in thy house may eat thereof.

יג  בִּכּוּרֵי כָּל אֲשֶׁר בְּאַרְצָם אֲשֶׁר יָבִיאוּ לַיהוָה לְךָ יִהְיֶה כָּל טָהוֹר בְּבֵיתְךָ יֹאכְלֶנּוּ.

14  Every thing devoted in Yisrael shall be thine.

יד  כָּל חֵרֶם בְּיִשְׂרָאֵל לְךָ יִהְיֶה.

15  Every thing that openeth the womb, of all flesh which they offer unto Hashem, both of man and beast, shall be thine; howbeit the first-born of man shalt thou surely redeem, and the firstling of unclean beasts shalt thou redeem.

טו  כָּל פֶּטֶר רֶחֶם לְכָל בָּשָׂר אֲשֶׁר יַקְרִיבוּ לַיהוָה בָּאָדָם וּבַבְּהֵמָה יִהְיֶה לָּךְ אַךְ פָּדֹה תִפְדֶּה אֵת בְּכוֹר הָאָדָם וְאֵת בְּכוֹר הַבְּהֵמָה הַטְּמֵאָה תִּפְדֶּה.

16  And their redemption-money from a month old shalt thou redeem them shall be, according to thy valuation, five shekels of silver, after the shekel of the sanctuary the same is twenty gerahs.

טז  וּפְדוּיָו מִבֶּן חֹדֶשׁ תִּפְדֶּה בְּעֶרְכְּךָ כֶּסֶף חֲמֵשֶׁת שְׁקָלִים בְּשֶׁקֶל הַקֹּדֶשׁ עֶשְׂרִים גֵּרָה הוּא.

17  But the firstling of an ox, or the firstling of a sheep, or the firstling of a goat, thou shalt not redeem; they are holy: thou shalt dash their blood against the altar, and shalt make their fat smoke for an offering made by fire, for a sweet savour unto Hashem.

יז  אַךְ בְּכוֹר שׁוֹר אוֹ בְכוֹר כֶּשֶׂב אוֹ בְכוֹר עֵז לֹא תִפְדֶּה קֹדֶשׁ הֵם אֶת דָּמָם תִּזְרֹק עַל הַמִּזְבֵּחַ וְאֶת חֶלְבָּם תַּקְטִיר אִשֶּׁה לְרֵיחַ נִיחֹחַ לַיהוָה.

18  And the flesh of them shall be thine, as the wave-breast and as the right thigh, it shall be thine.

יח  וּבְשָׂרָם יִהְיֶה לָּךְ כַּחֲזֵה הַתְּנוּפָה וּכְשׁוֹק הַיָּמִין לְךָ יִהְיֶה.

19  All the heave-offerings of the holy things, which B’nei Yisrael offer unto Hashem, have I given thee, and thy sons and thy daughters with thee, as a due for ever; it is an everlasting covenant of salt before Hashem unto thee and to thy seed with thee.’

יט  כֹּל תְּרוּמֹת הַקֳּדָשִׁים אֲשֶׁר יָרִימוּ בְנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל לַיהוָה נָתַתִּי לְךָ וּלְבָנֶיךָ וְלִבְנֹתֶיךָ אִתְּךָ לְחָק עוֹלָם בְּרִית מֶלַח עוֹלָם הִוא לִפְנֵי יְהוָה לְךָ וּלְזַרְעֲךָ אִתָּךְ.

20  And Hashem said unto Aharon: ‘Thou shalt have no inheritance in their land, neither shalt thou have any portion among them; I am thy portion and thine inheritance among B’nei Yisrael.

כ  וַיֹּאמֶר יְהוָה אֶל אַהֲרֹן בְּאַרְצָם לֹא תִנְחָל וְחֵלֶק לֹא יִהְיֶה לְךָ בְּתוֹכָם אֲנִי חֶלְקְךָ וְנַחֲלָתְךָ בְּתוֹךְ בְּנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל.

21  And unto the children of Levi, behold, I have given all the tithe in Yisrael for an inheritance, in return for their service which they serve, even the service of the Tent of Meeting.

כא  וְלִבְנֵי לֵוִי הִנֵּה נָתַתִּי כָּל מַעֲשֵׂר בְּיִשְׂרָאֵל לְנַחֲלָה חֵלֶף עֲבֹדָתָם אֲשֶׁר הֵם עֹבְדִים אֶת עֲבֹדַת אֹהֶל מוֹעֵד.

22  And henceforth B’nei Yisrael shall not come nigh the Tent of Meeting, lest they bear sin, and die.

כב  וְלֹא יִקְרְבוּ עוֹד בְּנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל אֶל אֹהֶל מוֹעֵד לָשֵׂאת חֵטְא לָמוּת.

23  But the Leviim alone shall do the service of the Tent of Meeting, and they shall bear their iniquity; it shall be a statute for ever throughout your generations, and among B’nei Yisrael they shall have no inheritance.

כג  וְעָבַד הַלֵּוִי הוּא אֶת עֲבֹדַת אֹהֶל מוֹעֵד וְהֵם יִשְׂאוּ עֲו ֹנָם חֻקַּת עוֹלָם לְדֹרֹתֵיכֶם וּבְתוֹךְ בְּנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל לֹא יִנְחֲלוּ נַחֲלָה.

24  For the tithe of B’nei Yisrael, which they set apart as a gift unto Hashem, I have given to the Leviim for an inheritance; therefore I have said unto them: Among B’nei Yisrael they shall have no inheritance.’

כד  כִּי אֶת מַעְשַׂר בְּנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל אֲשֶׁר יָרִימוּ לַיהוָה תְּרוּמָה נָתַתִּי לַלְוִיִּם לְנַחֲלָה עַל כֵּן אָמַרְתִּי לָהֶם בְּתוֹךְ בְּנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל לֹא יִנְחֲלוּ נַחֲלָה.

25  And Hashem spoke unto Moshe, saying:

כה  וַיְדַבֵּר יְהוָה אֶל מֹשֶׁה לֵּאמֹר.

26  ‘Moreover thou shalt speak unto the Leviim, and say unto them: When ye take of B’nei Yisrael the tithe which I have given you from them for your inheritance, then ye shall set apart of it a gift for Hashem, even a tithe of the tithe.

כו  וְאֶל הַלְוִיִּם תְּדַבֵּר וְאָמַרְתָּ אֲלֵהֶם כִּי תִקְחוּ מֵאֵת בְּנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל אֶת הַמַּעֲשֵׂר אֲשֶׁר נָתַתִּי לָכֶם מֵאִתָּם בְּנַחֲלַתְכֶם וַהֲרֵמֹתֶם מִמֶּנּוּ תְּרוּמַת יְהוָה מַעֲשֵׂר מִן הַמַּעֲשֵׂר.

27  And the gift which ye set apart shall be reckoned unto you, as though it were the corn of the threshing-floor, and as the fulness of the wine-press.

כז  וְנֶחְשַׁב לָכֶם תְּרוּמַתְכֶם כַּדָּגָן מִן הַגֹּרֶן וְכַמְלֵאָה מִן הַיָּקֶב.

28  Thus ye also shall set apart a gift unto Hashem of all your tithes, which ye receive of B’nei Yisrael; and thereof ye shall give the gift which is set apart unto Hashem to Aharon the Kohen.

כח  כֵּן תָּרִימוּ גַם אַתֶּם תְּרוּמַת יְהוָה מִכֹּל מַעְשְׂרֹתֵיכֶם אֲשֶׁר תִּקְחוּ מֵאֵת בְּנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל וּנְתַתֶּם מִמֶּנּוּ אֶת תְּרוּמַת יְהוָה לְאַהֲרֹן הַכֹּהֵן.

29  Out of all that is given you ye shall set apart all of that which is due unto Hashem, of all the best thereof, even the hallowed part thereof out of it.

כט  מִכֹּל מַתְּנֹתֵיכֶם תָּרִימוּ אֵת כָּל תְּרוּמַת יְהוָה מִכָּל חֶלְבּוֹ אֶת מִקְדְּשׁוֹ מִמֶּנּוּ.

30  Therefore thou shalt say unto them: When ye set apart the best thereof from it, then it shall be counted unto the Leviim as the increase of the threshing-floor, and as the increase of the wine-press.

ל  וְאָמַרְתָּ אֲלֵהֶם בַּהֲרִימְכֶם אֶת חֶלְבּוֹ מִמֶּנּוּ וְנֶחְשַׁב לַלְוִיִּם כִּתְבוּאַת גֹּרֶן וְכִתְבוּאַת יָקֶב.

31  And ye may eat it in every place, ye and your households; for it is your reward in return for your service in the Tent of Meeting.

לא  וַאֲכַלְתֶּם אֹתוֹ בְּכָל מָקוֹם אַתֶּם וּבֵיתְכֶם כִּי שָׂכָר הוּא לָכֶם חֵלֶף עֲבֹדַתְכֶם בְּאֹהֶל מוֹעֵד.

32  And ye shall bear no sin by reason of it, seeing that ye have set apart from it the best thereof; and ye shall not profane the holy things of B’nei Yisrael, that ye die not.’

לב  וְלֹא תִשְׂאוּ עָלָיו חֵטְא בַּהֲרִימְכֶם אֶת חֶלְבּוֹ מִמֶּנּוּ וְאֶת קָדְשֵׁי בְנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל לֹא תְחַלְּלוּ וְלֹא תָמוּתוּ.

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Numbers 18