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The Day of Atonement
16Â TheÂ LordÂ spoke to Moses after the death of Aaronâ€™s two sons, who died after they entered theÂ Lordâ€™s presence and burned the wrong kind of fire before him.Â 2Â TheÂ LordÂ said to Moses, â€œWarn your brother, Aaron, not to enter the Most Holy Place behind the inner curtain whenever he chooses; if he does, he will die. For the Arkâ€™s coverâ€”the place of atonementâ€”is there, and I myself am present in the cloud above the atonement cover.
3Â â€œWhen Aaron enters the sanctuary area, he must follow these instructions fully. He must bring a young bull for a sin offering and a ram for a burnt offering.Â 4Â He must put on his linen tunic and the linen undergarments worn next to his body. He must tie the linen sash around his waist and put the linen turban on his head. These are sacred garments, so he must bathe himself in water before he puts them on.Â 5Â Aaron must take from the community of Israel two male goats for a sin offering and a ram for a burnt offering.
6Â â€œAaron will present his own bull as a sin offering to purify himself and his family, making them right with theÂ Lord.Â 7Â Then he must take the two male goats and present them to theÂ LordÂ at the entrance of the Tabernacle.Â 8Â He is to cast sacred lots to determine which goat will be reserved as an offering to theÂ LordÂ and which will carry the sins of the people to the wilderness of Azazel.Â 9Â Aaron will then present as a sin offering the goat chosen by lot for theÂ Lord.Â 10Â The other goat, the scapegoat chosen by lot to be sent away, will be kept alive, standing before theÂ Lord. When it is sent away to Azazel in the wilderness, the people will be purified and made right with theÂ Lord.
11Â â€œAaron will present his own bull as a sin offering to purify himself and his family, making them right with theÂ Lord. After he has slaughtered the bull as a sin offering,Â 12Â he will fill an incense burner with burning coals from the altar that stands before theÂ Lord. Then he will take two handfuls of fragrant powdered incense and will carry the burner and the incense behind the inner curtain.Â 13Â There in theÂ Lordâ€™s presence he will put the incense on the burning coals so that a cloud of incense will rise over the Arkâ€™s coverâ€”the place of atonementâ€”that rests on the Ark of the Covenant.Â If he follows these instructions, he will not die.Â 14Â Then he must take some of the blood of the bull, dip his finger in it, and sprinkle it on the east side of the atonement cover. He must sprinkle blood seven times with his finger in front of the atonement cover.
15Â â€œThen Aaron must slaughter the first goat as a sin offering for the people and carry its blood behind the inner curtain. There he will sprinkle the goatâ€™s blood over the atonement cover and in front of it, just as he did with the bullâ€™s blood.16Â Through this process, he will purifyÂ the Most Holy Place, and he will do the same for the entire Tabernacle, because of the defiling sin and rebellion of the Israelites.Â 17Â No one else is allowed inside the Tabernacle when Aaron enters it for the purification ceremony in the Most Holy Place. No one may enter until he comes out again after purifying himself, his family, and all the congregation of Israel, making them right with theÂ Lord.
18Â â€œThen Aaron will come out to purify the altar that stands before theÂ Lord. He will do this by taking some of the blood from the bull and the goat and putting it on each of the horns of the altar.Â 19Â Then he must sprinkle the blood with his finger seven times over the altar. In this way, he will cleanse it from Israelâ€™s defilement and make it holy.
20Â â€œWhen Aaron has finished purifying the Most Holy Place and the Tabernacle and the altar, he must present the live goat.21Â He will lay both of his hands on the goatâ€™s head and confess over it all the wickedness, rebellion, and sins of the people of Israel. In this way, he will transfer the peopleâ€™s sins to the head of the goat. Then a man specially chosen for the task will drive the goat into the wilderness.Â 22Â As the goat goes into the wilderness, it will carry all the peopleâ€™s sins upon itself into a desolate land.
23Â â€œWhen Aaron goes back into the Tabernacle, he must take off the linen garments he was wearing when he entered the Most Holy Place, and he must leave the garments there.Â 24Â Then he must bathe himself with water in a sacred place, put on his regular garments, and go out to sacrifice a burnt offering for himself and a burnt offering for the people. Through this process, he will purify himself and the people, making them right with theÂ Lord.Â 25Â He must then burn all the fat of the sin offering on the altar.
26Â â€œThe man chosen to drive the scapegoat into the wilderness of Azazel must wash his clothes and bathe himself in water. Then he may return to the camp.
27Â â€œThe bull and the goat presented as sin offerings, whose blood Aaron takes into the Most Holy Place for the purification ceremony, will be carried outside the camp. The animalsâ€™ hides, internal organs, and dung are all to be burned.Â 28Â The man who burns them must wash his clothes and bathe himself in water before returning to the camp.
29Â â€œOn the tenth day of the appointed month in early autumn,Â you must deny yourselves.Â Neither native-born Israelites nor foreigners living among you may do any kind of work. This is a permanent law for you.Â 30Â On that day offerings of purification will be made for you,Â and you will be purified in theÂ Lordâ€™s presence from all your sins.Â 31Â It will be a Sabbath day of complete rest for you, and you must deny yourselves. This is a permanent law for you.Â 32Â In future generations, the purificationceremony will be performed by the priest who has been anointed and ordained to serve as high priest in place of his ancestor Aaron. He will put on the holy linen garmentsÂ 33Â and purify the Most Holy Place, the Tabernacle, the altar, the priests, and the entire congregation.Â 34Â This is a permanent law for you, to purify the people of Israel from their sins, making them right with theÂ LordÂ once each year.â€
Moses followed all these instructions exactly as theÂ LordÂ had commanded him.
Prohibitions against Eating Blood
17Â Then theÂ LordÂ said to Moses,Â 2Â â€œGive the following instructions to Aaron and his sons and all the people of Israel. This is what theÂ LordÂ has commanded.
3Â â€œIf any native Israelite sacrifices a bullÂ or a lamb or a goat anywhere inside or outside the campÂ 4Â instead of bringing it to the entrance of the TabernacleÂ to present it as an offering to theÂ Lord, that person will be as guilty as a murderer.Â Such a person has shed blood and will be cut off from the community.Â 5Â The purpose of this rule is to stop the Israelites from sacrificing animals in the open fields. It will ensure that they bring their sacrifices to the priest at the entrance of the Tabernacle, so he can present them to theÂ LordÂ as peace offerings.Â 6Â Then the priest will be able to splatter the blood against theÂ Lordâ€™s altar at the entrance of the Tabernacle, and he will burn the fat as a pleasing aroma to theÂ Lord.Â 7Â The people must no longer be unfaithful to theÂ LordÂ by offering sacrifices to the goat idols.Â This is a permanent law for them, to be observed from generation to generation.
8Â â€œGive them this command as well. If any native Israelite or foreigner living among you offers a burnt offering or a sacrifice9Â but does not bring it to the entrance of the Tabernacle to offer it to theÂ Lord, that person will be cut off from the community.
10Â â€œAnd if any native Israelite or foreigner living among you eats or drinks blood in any form, I will turn against that person and cut him off from the community of your people,Â 11Â for the life of the body is in its blood. I have given you the blood on the altar to purify you, making you right with theÂ Lord.Â It is the blood, given in exchange for a life, that makes purification possible.Â 12Â That is why I have said to the people of Israel, â€˜You must never eat or drink bloodâ€”neither you nor the foreigners living among you.â€™
13Â â€œAnd if any native Israelite or foreigner living among you goes hunting and kills an animal or bird that is approved for eating, he must drain its blood and cover it with earth.Â 14Â The life of every creature is in its blood. That is why I have said to the people of Israel, â€˜You must never eat or drink blood, for the life of any creature is in its blood.â€™ So whoever consumes blood will be cut off from the community.
15Â â€œAnd if any native-born Israelites or foreigners eat the meat of an animal that died naturally or was torn up by wild animals, they must wash their clothes and bathe themselves in water. They will remain ceremonially unclean until evening, but then they will be clean.Â 16Â But if they do not wash their clothes and bathe themselves, they will be punished for their sin.â€
Forbidden Sexual Practices
18Â Then theÂ LordÂ said to Moses,Â 2Â â€œGive the following instructions to the people of Israel. I am theÂ LordÂ your God.Â 3Â So do not act like the people in Egypt, where you used to live, or like the people of Canaan, where I am taking you. You must not imitate their way of life.Â 4Â You must obey all my regulations and be careful to obey my decrees, for I am theÂ LordÂ your God.5Â If you obey my decrees and my regulations, you will find life through them. I am theÂ Lord.
6Â â€œYou must never have sexual relations with a close relative, for I am theÂ Lord.
7Â â€œDo not violate your father by having sexual relations with your mother. She is your mother; you must not have sexual relations with her.
8Â â€œDo not have sexual relations with any of your fatherâ€™s wives, for this would violate your father.
9Â â€œDo not have sexual relations with your sister or half sister, whether she is your fatherâ€™s daughter or your motherâ€™s daughter, whether she was born into your household or someone elseâ€™s.
10Â â€œDo not have sexual relations with your granddaughter, whether she is your sonâ€™s daughter or your daughterâ€™s daughter, for this would violate yourself.
11Â â€œDo not have sexual relations with your stepsister, the daughter of any of your fatherâ€™s wives, for she is your sister.
12Â â€œDo not have sexual relations with your fatherâ€™s sister, for she is your fatherâ€™s close relative.
13Â â€œDo not have sexual relations with your motherâ€™s sister, for she is your motherâ€™s close relative.
14Â â€œDo not violate your uncle, your fatherâ€™s brother, by having sexual relations with his wife, for she is your aunt.
15Â â€œDo not have sexual relations with your daughter-in-law; she is your sonâ€™s wife, so you must not have sexual relations with her.
16Â â€œDo not have sexual relations with your brotherâ€™s wife, for this would violate your brother.
17Â â€œDo not have sexual relations with both a woman and her daughter. And do not takeÂ her granddaughter, whether her sonâ€™s daughter or her daughterâ€™s daughter, and have sexual relations with her. They are close relatives, and this would be a wicked act.
18Â â€œWhile your wife is living, do not marry her sister and have sexual relations with her, for they would be rivals.
19Â â€œDo not have sexual relations with a woman during her period of menstrual impurity.
20Â â€œDo not defile yourself by having sexual intercourse with your neighborâ€™s wife.
21Â â€œDo not permit any of your children to be offered as a sacrifice to Molech, for you must not bring shame on the name of your God. I am theÂ Lord.
22Â â€œDo not practice homosexuality, having sex with another man as with a woman. It is a detestable sin.
23Â â€œA man must not defile himself by having sex with an animal. And a woman must not offer herself to a male animal to have intercourse with it. This is a perverse act.
24Â â€œDo not defile yourselves in any of these ways, for the people I am driving out before you have defiled themselves in all these ways.Â 25Â Because the entire land has become defiled, I am punishing the people who live there. I will cause the land to vomit them out.Â 26Â You must obey all my decrees and regulations. You must not commit any of these detestable sins. This applies both to native-born Israelites and to the foreigners living among you.
27Â â€œAll these detestable activities are practiced by the people of the land where I am taking you, and this is how the land has become defiled.Â 28Â So do not defile the land and give it a reason to vomit you out, as it will vomit out the people who live there now.Â 29Â Whoever commits any of these detestable sins will be cut off from the community of Israel.Â 30Â So obey my instructions, and do not defile yourselves by committing any of these detestable practices that were committed by the people who lived in the land before you. I am theÂ LordÂ your God.â€
32Â Along the way, they came across a man named Simon, who was from Cyrene,Â and the soldiers forced him to carry Jesusâ€™ cross.Â 33Â And they went out to a place called Golgotha (which means â€œPlace of the Skullâ€).Â 34Â The soldiers gave him wine mixed with bitter gall, but when he had tasted it, he refused to drink it.
35Â After they had nailed him to the cross, the soldiers gambled for his clothes by throwing dice.Â 36Â Then they sat around and kept guard as he hung there.Â 37Â A sign was fastened above Jesusâ€™ head, announcing the charge against him. It read: â€œThis is Jesus, the King of the Jews.â€Â 38Â Two revolutionariesÂ were crucified with him, one on his right and one on his left.
39Â The people passing by shouted abuse, shaking their heads in mockery.Â 40Â â€œLook at you now!â€ they yelled at him. â€œYou said you were going to destroy the Temple and rebuild it in three days. Well then, if you are the Son of God, save yourself and come down from the cross!â€
41Â The leading priests, the teachers of religious law, and the elders also mocked Jesus.Â 42Â â€œHe saved others,â€ they scoffed, â€œbut he canâ€™t save himself! So he is the King of Israel, is he? Let him come down from the cross right now, and we will believe in him!Â 43Â He trusted God, so let God rescue him now if he wants him! For he said, â€˜I am the Son of God.â€™â€Â 44Â Even the revolutionaries who were crucified with him ridiculed him in the same way.
The Death of Jesus
45Â At noon, darkness fell across the whole land until three oâ€™clock.Â 46Â At about three oâ€™clock, Jesus called out with a loud voice,Â â€œEli, Eli,Â lema sabachthani?â€Â which meansÂ â€œMy God, my God, why have you abandoned me?â€
47Â Some of the bystanders misunderstood and thought he was calling for the prophet Elijah.Â 48Â One of them ran and filled a sponge with sour wine, holding it up to him on a reed stick so he could drink.Â 49Â But the rest said, â€œWait! Letâ€™s see whether Elijah comes to save him.â€
50Â Then Jesus shouted out again, and he released his spirit.Â 51Â At that moment the curtain in the sanctuary of the Temple was torn in two, from top to bottom. The earth shook, rocks split apart,Â 52Â and tombs opened. The bodies of many godly men and women who had died were raised from the dead.Â 53Â They left the cemetery after Jesusâ€™ resurrection, went into the holy city of Jerusalem, and appeared to many people.
54Â The Roman officerÂ and the other soldiers at the crucifixion were terrified by the earthquake and all that had happened. They said, â€œThis man truly was the Son of God!â€
55Â And many women who had come from Galilee with Jesus to care for him were watching from a distance.Â 56Â Among them were Mary Magdalene, Mary (the mother of James and Joseph), and the mother of James and John, the sons of Zebedee.
The Burial of Jesus
57Â As evening approached, Joseph, a rich man from Arimathea who had become a follower of Jesus,Â 58Â went to Pilate and asked for Jesusâ€™ body. And Pilate issued an order to release it to him.Â 59Â Joseph took the body and wrapped it in a long sheet of clean linen cloth.Â 60Â He placed it in his own new tomb, which had been carved out of the rock. Then he rolled a great stone across the entrance and left.Â 61Â Both Mary Magdalene and the other Mary were sitting across from the tomb and watching.
The Guard at the Tomb
62Â The next day, on the Sabbath,Â the leading priests and Pharisees went to see Pilate.Â 63Â They told him, â€œSir, we remember what that deceiver once said while he was still alive: â€˜After three days I will rise from the dead.â€™Â 64Â So we request that you seal the tomb until the third day. This will prevent his disciples from coming and stealing his body and then telling everyone he was raised from the dead! If that happens, weâ€™ll be worse off than we were at first.â€
65Â Pilate replied, â€œTake guards and secure it the best you can.â€Â 66Â So they sealed the tomb and posted guards to protect it.