Leviticus 21

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Leviticus 21

The Holiness of Priests

1And the Lord said to Moses, "Speak to the priests, the sons of Aaron, and say to them that none of them shall defile himself for the dead among his people, 2except for his nearest of kin, his mother, his father, his son, his daughter, his brother, 3or his virgin sister (who is near to him because she has had no husband; for her he may defile himself). 4He shall not defile himself as a husband among his people and so profane himself. 5They shall not make tonsures upon their heads, nor shave off the edges of their beards, nor make any cuttings in their flesh. 6They shall be holy to their God, and not profane the name of their God; for they offer the offerings by fire to the Lord, the bread of their God; therefore they shall be holy. 7They shall not marry a harlot or a woman who has been defiled; neither shall they marry a woman divorced from her husband; for the priest is holy to his God. 8You shall consecrate him, for he offers the bread of your God; he shall be holy to you; for I the Lord, who sanctify you, am holy. 9And the daughter of any priest, if she profanes herself by playing the harlot, profanes her father; she shall be burned with fire.

10"The priest who is chief among his brethren, upon whose head the anointing oil is poured, and who has been consecrated to wear the garments, shall not let the hair of his head hang loose, nor rend his clothes; 11he shall not go in to any dead body, nor defile himself, even for his father or for his mother; 12neither shall he go out of the sanctuary, nor profane the sanctuary of his God; for the consecration of the anointing oil of his God is upon him: I am the Lord. 13And he shall take a wife in her virginity. 14A widow, or one divorced, or a woman who has been defiled, or a harlot, these he shall not marry; but he shall take to wife a virgin of his own people, 15that he may not profane his children among his people; for I am the Lord who sanctify him."

16And the Lord said to Moses, 17"Say to Aaron, None of your descendants throughout their generations who has a blemish may approach to offer the bread of his God. 18For no one who has a blemish shall draw near, a man blind or lame, or one who has a mutilated face or a limb too long, 19or a man who has an injured foot or an injured hand, 20or a hunchback, or a dwarf, or a man with a defect in his sight or an itching disease or scabs or crushed testicles; 21no man of the descendants of Aaron the priest who has a blemish shall come near to offer the Lord's offerings by fire; since he has a blemish, he shall not come near to offer the bread of his God. 22He may eat the bread of his God, both of the most holy and of the holy things, 23but he shall not come near the veil or approach the altar, because he has a blemish, that he may not profane my sanctuaries; for I am the Lord who sanctify them." 24So Moses spoke to Aaron and to his sons and to all the people of Israel.