3So Aaron did it. He set up the lamps so that they faced forward on the lampstand. He did just as the Lord had commanded Moses. 4The lampstand was made out of hammered gold. From its base to its blooms it was made out of hammered gold. The lampstand was made exactly like the pattern the Lord had shown Moses.
5The Lord spoke to Moses. He said, 6“Take the Levites from among the other men of Israel. Make them ‘clean’ in the usual way. 7Here is how to make them pure. Sprinkle the special water on them. Then have them shave their whole bodies. Also have them wash their clothes. That is how they will make themselves pure.
8“Have them get a young bull along with its grain offering. The offering must be made out of fine flour mixed with olive oil. Then you must get a second young bull. You must sacrifice it as a sin offering.
9“Bring the Levites to the front of the Tent of Meeting. Gather the whole community of Israel together. 10You must bring the Levites to me. The men of Israel must place their hands on them. 11Aaron must bring the Levites to me. They are a wave offering from the people of Israel. That is how they will be set apart to do my work.
12“I want the Levites to place their hands on the heads of the bulls. Then they must sacrifice one bull as a sin offering to me. And they must sacrifice the other as a burnt offering. The blood of the bulls will pay for the sin of the Levites.
13“Have the Levites stand in front of Aaron and his sons. Then give them as a wave offering to me. 14That is how I want you to set the Levites apart from the other men of Israel. The Levites will belong to me.
15“Make the Levites pure. Give them to me as a wave offering. Then they must come to do their work at the Tent of Meeting. 16They are the men of Israel who will be given to me completely. I have taken them to be my own. I have taken them in place of every son who is born first in his family in Israel.
17“Every male that is born first in Israel belongs to me. That is true whether it is a man or an animal. I struck down all of the males that were born first to a mother in Egypt. Then I set apart for myself all of the males that were born first in Israel. 18And I have taken the Levites in place of all of the sons who are born first in Israel.
19“I have given the Levites as gifts to Aaron and his sons. I have taken them from all of the men of Israel. I have appointed them to do the work at the Tent of Meeting. They will do it in place of the men of Israel.
“That is how they will keep the men of Israel from being guilty when they go near the sacred tent. Then no plague will strike the people of Israel when they go near the tent.”
20So Moses and Aaron and the whole community of Israel did with the Levites just as the Lord had commanded Moses. 21The Levites made themselves pure. They washed their clothes. Then Aaron gave them to the Lord as a wave offering. That’s how he paid for their sin to make them pure.
22After that, the Levites came to do their work at the Tent of Meeting. They worked under the direction of Aaron and his sons. And so Moses and Aaron and the whole community of Israel did with the Levites just as the Lord had commanded Moses.
25“But when they reach the age of 50, they must not work any longer. They must stop doing their regular work. 26They can help their brothers with their duties at the Tent of Meeting. But they themselves should not do the work. That is how you must direct the Levites to do their work.”
About New International Reader’s Version
The New International Reader’s Version (NIrV) was developed to help early readers understand the Bible. Begun in 1992, the NIrV is a simplification of the New International Version (NIV). The NIrV uses shorter words and sentences so that those with a typical fourth grade reading level can comprehend what they are reading. The chapters have been separated into shorter sections and most have titles that clearly indicate what the section is all about. The NIrV will be a valuable translation to those for whom English is a second language. The NIrV still relies on the best and oldest copies of the Hebrew and Greek manuscripts for its translation, guaranteeing that those who read it are getting the actual Word of God.
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