Daily Torah Reading
The Lord spoke further to Moses: Speak to Aaron and say: No man of your offspring throughout the ages who has a defect shall be qualified to offer the food of his God. No one at all who has a defect shall be qualified: no man who is blind, or lame, or has a limb too short or too long; no man who has a broken leg or a broken arm; or who is a hunchback, or a dwarf, or who has a growth in his eye, or who has a boil-scar, or scurvy, or crushed testes. No man among the offspring of Aaron the priest who has a defect shall be qualified to offer the Lord's offering by fire; having a defect, he shall not be qualified to offer the food of his God. He may eat of the food of his God, of the most holy as well as of the holy; but he shall not enter behind the curtain or come near the altar, for he has a defect. He shall not profane these places sacred to Me, for I the Lord have sanctified them.
Thus Moses spoke to Aaron and his sons and to all the Israelites.
The Lord spoke to Moses, saying: Instruct Aaron and his sons to be scrupulous about the sacred donations that the Israelite people consecrate to Me, lest they profane My holy name, Mine the Lord's. Say to them:
Throughout the ages, if any man among your offspring, while in a state of uncleanness, partakes of any sacred donation that the Israelite people may consecrate to the Lord, that person shall be cut off from before Me: I am the Lord. No man of Aaron's offspring who has an eruption or a discharge shall eat of the sacred donations until he is clean. If one touches anything made unclean by a corpse, or if a man has an emission of semen, or if a man touches any swarming thing by which he is made unclean or any human being by whom he is made unclean--whatever his uncleanness--the person who touches such shall be unclean until evening and shall not eat of the sacred donations unless he has washed his body in water. As soon as the sun sets, he shall be clean; and afterward he may eat of the sacred donations, for they are his food. He shall not eat anything that died or was torn by beasts, thereby becoming unclean: I am the Lord. They shall keep My charge, lest they incur guilt thereby and die for it, having committed profanation: I the Lord consecrate them.
No lay person shall eat of the sacred donations. No bound or hired laborer of a priest shall eat of the sacred donations; but a person who is a priest's property by purchase may eat of them; and those that are born into his household may eat of his food.
If a priest's daughter marries a layman, she may not eat of the sacred gifts; but if the priest's daughter is widowed or divorced and without offspring, and is back in her father's house as in her youth, she may eat of her father's food. No lay person may eat of it: but if a man eats of a sacred donation unwittingly, he shall pay the priest for the sacred donation, adding one-fifth of its value. But [the priests] must not allow the Israelites to profane the sacred donations that they set aside for the Lord, or to incur guilt requiring a penalty payment, by eating such sacred donations: for it is I the Lord who make them sacred.
From Parshat Emor. From THE TANAKH: The New JPS Translation According to the Traditional Hebrew Text. Copyright 1985 by the Jewish Publication Society. Used by permission.
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