Aaron Sets Up the Lamps
1The Lord said to Moses, 2“Say to Aaron, ‘Set up the seven lamps. They will light up the area in front of the lampstand.’ ”
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.
Moses Sets Apart the Levites
5The Lord spoke to Moses. He said, 6“Take the Levites from among all the Israelites. 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. 8Have them get a young bull along with its grain offering. The offering must be made out of the finest flour mixed with olive oil. Then you must get a second young bull. You must sacrifice it as a sin offering. 9Bring 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 Israelites must place their hands on them. 11Aaron must bring the Levites to me. They are a wave offering from the Israelites. That is how they will be set apart to do my work.
12“Then I want the Levites to place their hands on the heads of the bulls. 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. 13Have 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 apart the Levites from the other Israelites. 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 Israelites who will be given to me completely. I have taken them to be my own. I have taken them in place of every son born first in his family in Israel. 17Every male born first in Israel belongs to me. That is true whether it is a human or an animal. In Egypt I struck down all the males born first to their mothers. Then I set apart for myself all the males born first in Israel. 18And I have taken the Levites in place of all the sons born first in Israel. 19I have given the Levites as gifts to Aaron and his sons. I have taken them from among all the Israelites. I have appointed them to do the work at the tent of meeting. They will do it in place of the Israelites. That is how they will keep the Israelites from being guilty when they go near the sacred tent. Then no plague will strike the Israelites when they go near the tent.”
20So Moses and Aaron and all the Israelites 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.
23The Lord said to Moses, 24“Here is what the Levites must do. Men 25 years old or more must come and take part in the work at the tent of meeting. 25But 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.”