Numbers - 19:1-22

      1 Yahweh spoke to Moses and to Aaron, saying, 2 "This is the statute of the law which Yahweh has commanded: Speak to the children of Israel, that they bring you a red heifer without spot, in which is no blemish, (and) on which never came yoke. 3 You shall give her to Eleazar the priest, and he shall bring her forth outside of the camp, and one shall kill her before his face: 4 and Eleazar the priest shall take of her blood with his finger, and sprinkle her blood toward the front of the Tent of Meeting seven times. 5 One shall burn the heifer in his sight; her skin, and her flesh, and her blood, with her dung, shall he burn: 6 and the priest shall take cedar wood, and hyssop, and scarlet, and cast it into the midst of the burning of the heifer. 7 Then the priest shall wash his clothes, and he shall bathe his flesh in water, and afterward he shall come into the camp, and the priest shall be unclean until the evening. 8 He who burns her shall wash his clothes in water, and bathe his flesh in water, and shall be unclean until the evening. 9 "A man who is clean shall gather up the ashes of the heifer, and lay them up outside of the camp in a clean place; and it shall be kept for the congregation of the children of Israel for a water for impurity: it is a sin offering. 10 He who gathers the ashes of the heifer shall wash his clothes, and be unclean until the evening: and it shall be to the children of Israel, and to the stranger who lives as a foreigner among them, for a statute forever. 11 "He who touches the dead body of any man shall be unclean seven days: 12 the same shall purify himself with water on the third day, and on the seventh day he shall be clean: but if he doesn't purify himself the third day, then the seventh day he shall not be clean. 13 Whoever touches a dead person, the body of a man who has died, and doesn't purify himself, defiles the tabernacle of Yahweh; and that soul shall be cut off from Israel: because the water for impurity was not sprinkled on him, he shall be unclean; his uncleanness is yet on him. 14 "This is the law when a man dies in a tent: everyone who comes into the tent, and everyone who is in the tent, shall be unclean seven days. 15 Every open vessel, which has no covering bound on it, is unclean. 16 "Whoever in the open field touches one who is slain with a sword, or a dead body, or a bone of a man, or a grave, shall be unclean seven days. 17 "For the unclean they shall take of the ashes of the burning of the sin offering; and running water shall be put thereto in a vessel: 18 and a clean person shall take hyssop, and dip it in the water, and sprinkle it on the tent, and on all the vessels, and on the persons who were there, and on him who touched the bone, or the slain, or the dead, or the grave: 19 and the clean person shall sprinkle on the unclean on the third day, and on the seventh day: and on the seventh day he shall purify him; and he shall wash his clothes, and bathe himself in water, and shall be clean at evening. 20 But the man who shall be unclean, and shall not purify himself, that soul shall be cut off from the midst of the assembly, because he has defiled the sanctuary of Yahweh: the water for impurity has not been sprinkled on him; he is unclean. 21 It shall be a perpetual statute to them: and he who sprinkles the water for impurity shall wash his clothes, and he who touches the water for impurity shall be unclean until evening. 22 "Whatever the unclean person touches shall be unclean; and the soul that touches it shall be unclean until evening."

Chapter In-Depth

Explanation and meaning of Numbers 19.

Historical Commentaries

Scholarly Analysis and Interpretation.

The ordinance of the red heifer, Numbers 19:1, Numbers 19:2. She shall be slain by Eleazar without the camp, and her blood sprinkled before the tabernacle, Numbers 19:3, Numbers 19:4. Her whole body and appurtenance shall be reduced to ashes, and while burning, cedar wood, scarlet, and hyssop, shall be thrown into the fire, Numbers 19:5, Numbers 19:6. The priest, and he that burns her, to bathe themselves, and be reputed unclean till the evening, Numbers 19:7, Numbers 19:8. Her ashes to be laid up for a water of purification, Numbers 19:9. How, and in what cases it is to be applied, Numbers 19:10-13. The law concerning him who dies in a tent, or who is killed in the open field, Numbers 19:14-16. How the persons, tent, and vessels are to be purified by the application of these ashes, Numbers 19:17-19. The unclean person who does not apply them, to be cut off from the congregation, Numbers 19:20. This is to be a perpetual statute, Numbers 19:21, Numbers 19:22.

This chapter contains a law for making a water for purification for sin, the ingredients of which are the ashes of a red heifer burnt, about which many things are observed, Numbers 19:1; the use of the water made of them, to purify such as were unclean by the touch of a dead body, Numbers 19:11; some rules are given, by which it might be known who were unclean on account of a dead body, Numbers 19:14; the manner of purifying such persons, Numbers 19:17; and the punishment of those that should neglect purification, Numbers 19:20.

(Numbers 19:1-10) The ashes of a heifer.
(Numbers 19:11-22) Used to purify the unclean.

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