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from the altar, and spread a purple cloth
thereon: 1 The age and time of the Levites' service. 4. The
14 And they shall put upon it all the carriage of the Kohathites, when the priests have taken down the tabernacle. 16 The charge of vessels thereof, wherewith 'they minister Eleazur. 17 The office of the priests. 21 The about it, even the censers, the fleshhooks, carriage of the Gershonités. 29 The carriage of and the shovels, and the basons, all the the Merarites. 34 The number of the Kohathites,
vessels of the altar; and they shall spread 38 of the Gershonites, 42 and of the Merarites.
upon it a covering of badgers' skins, and And the LORD spake unto Moses and unto put to the staves of it. Aaron, saying,
15 And when Aaron and his sons have 2 Take the sum of the sons of Kohath made an end of covering the sanctuary, and from among the sons of Levi, after their all the vessels of the sanctuary, as the camp is families, by the house of their fathers, to set forward ; after that, the sons of Kohath
3 From thirty years old and upward even shall come to bear it: but they shall not until fifty years old, all that enter into the touch any holy thing, lest they die. These host, to do the work in the tabernacle of the things are the burden of the sons of Kohath congregation.
in the tabernacle of the congregation. 4 This shall be the service of the sons of 16 And to the office of Eleazar the son Kohath in the tabernacle of the congrega- of Aaron the priest pertaineth the oil for the tion, about the most holy things :
light, and the 'sweet incense, and the daily 5 And when the camp setteth forward, meat offering, and the anointing oil, and Aaron shall come, and his sons, and they the oversight of all the tabernacle, and of all shall take down the covering vail, and cover that therein is, in the sanctuary, and in the the ark of testimony with it:
vessels thereof. 6 And shall put thereon the covering of 17 9 And the LORD spake unto Moses badgers' skins, and shall spread over it a and unto Aaron, saying, cloth wholly of blue, and shall put in the 18 Cut ye not off the tribe of the families staves thereof.
of the Kohathites from among the Levites : 7 And upon the table of 'shewbread they 19 But thus do unto them, that they may shall spread a cloth of blue, and put thereon live, and not die, when they approach unto the dishes, and the spoons, and the bowls, the most holy things: Aaron and his sons and covers to 'cover withal: and the con- shall go in, and appoint them every one to tinual bread shall be thereon :
his service and to his burden: 8 And they shall spread upon them a 20 But they shall not go in to see when cloth of scarlet, and cover the same with a the holy things are covered, lest they die. covering of badgers' skins, and shall put in 21 | And the LORD spake unto Moses, the staves thereof.
saying 9 And they shall take a cloth of blue, and 22 Take also the sum of the sons of Gercover the 'candlestick of the light, and his shon, throughout the houses of their fathers, lamps, and his tongs, and his snuffdishes, by their families ;) and all the oil vessels thereof, wherewith 23 From thirty years old and upward until they minister unto it:
fifty years old shalt thou number them; all 10 And they shall put it and all the ves- that enter in to perform the service, to do sels thereof within a covering of badgers' the work in the tabernacle of the congreskins, and shall put it upon a bar.
gation. 11 And upon the golden altar they shall 24 This is the service of the families of spread a cloth of blue, and cover it with a the Gershonites, to serve, and for 'burdens : covering of badgers' skins, and shall put to 25 And they shall bear the curtains of the staves thereof:
the tabernacle, and the tabernacle of the 12 And they shall take all the instru-congregation, his covering, and the covering ments of ministry, wherewith they minister of the badgers' skins that is above upon it, in the sanctuary, and put them in a cloth of and the hanging for the door of the taberblue, and cover them with a covering of nacle of the congregation, badgers' skins, and shall put them on a bar: 26 And the hangings of the court, and 13 And they shall take away the ashes the hanging for the door of the gate of the ? Or, pour out withal,
5 Or, bowls.
7 Exod. 30. 23.
1 Exod. 25. 30.
8 Exod. 25. 31.
4 Exod. 35, 37, 38.
6 Exod. 30. 34.
court, which is by the tabernacle and by the number according to the commandment of altar round about, and their cords, and all the LORD by the hand of Moses. the instruments of their service, and all that 38 And those that were numbered of the is made for them: so shall they serve. sons of Gershon, throughout their families,
27 At the appointment of Aaron and his and by the house of their fathers, sons shall be all the service of the sons of 39 From thirty years old and upward the Gershonites, in all their burdens, and in even unto fifty years old, every one that all their service: and ye shall appoint unto entereth into the service, for the work in them in charge all their burdens.
the tabernacle of the congregation, 28 This is the service of the families of 40 Even those that were numbered of the sons of Gershon in the tabernacle of the them, throughout their families, by the congregation : and their charge shall be house of their fathers, were two thousand under the hand of Ithamar the son of Aaron and six hundred and thirty. the priest.
41 These are they that were numbered 29 | As for the sons of Merari, thou of the families of the sons of Gershon, of all shalt number them after their families, by that might do service in the tabernacle of the house of their fathers;
the congregation, whom Moses and Aaron 30 From thirty years old and upward even did number according to the commandment unto fifty years old shalt thou number them, of the LORD. every one that entereth into the service, to 42 | And those that were numbered of do the work of the tabernacle of the con- the families of the sons of Merari, throughgregation.
out their families, by the house of their 31 And this is the charge of their bur- fathers, den, according to all their service in the 43 From thirty years old and upward tabernacle of the congregation; ''the boards even unto fifty years old, every one that of the tabernacle, and the bars thereof, and entereth into the service, for the work in the pillars thereof, and sockets thereof, the tabernacle of the congregation,
32 And the pillars of the court round 44 Even those that were numbered of about, and their sockets, and their pins, and them after their families, were three thoutheir cords, with all their instruments, and sand and two hundred. with all their service: and by name ye shall 45 These be those that were numbered of reckon the instruments of the charge of the families of the sons of Merari, whom their burden.
Moses and Aaron numbered according to 33 This is the service of the families of the word of the LORD by the hand of the sons of Merari, according to all their Moses. service, in the tabernacle of the congrega- 46 All those that were numbered of the tion, under the hand of Ithamar the son of Levites, whom Moses and Aaron and the Aaron the priest.
chief of Israel numbered, after their fami34 And Moses and Aaron and the chief lies, and after the house of their fathers, of the congregation numbered the sons of 47 From thirty years old and upward the Kohathites after their families, and after even unto fifty years old, every one that the house of their fathers,
came to do the service of the ministry, and 35 From thirty years old and upward the service of the burden in the tabernacle
one that the congregation entereth into the service, for the work in the tabernacle of the congregation:
them, were eight thousand and five hundred 36 And those that were numbered of and fourscore. them by their families were two thousand 49 According to the commandment of seven hundred and fifty.
the Lord they were numbered by the hand 37 These were they that were numbered of Moses, every one according to his serof the families of the Kohathites, all that vice, and according to his burden: thus were might do service in the tabernacle of the they numbered of him, as the LORD comcongregation, which Moses and Aaron did manded Moses.
11 Heb. warfare. Verse 3. “ From thirty years old and upwards.”_This appears to contradiet chap. viii. 24, where twenty-five years is mentioned as the age at which the service of the Levites commenced. Maimonides and other Jewish writers account for the variation by stating, that, from twenty-five to thirty years of age, the Levites attended in order to be instructed in
10 Heb. mouth.
12 Exod. 26. 15.
their duties, but did not enter upon actual service until they were full thirty years of age. Aben Ezra, and other Rabbins, however, affirm that the Levites did enter on the easier and lighter parts of the service, such as keeping watch and bearing a part in the choir, at twenty-five, but did not, until thirty-five, enter on the more laborious branches of Levitical duty. The Jews, indeed, inform us that the Levites passed through four stages of preparation for their peculiar office. From one month old to their twentieth year, they were instructed in the law of God; from twenty to twenty-five, in the functions of their ministry; and from thence to thirty they served a sort of apprenticeship, beginning to exercise themselves in some of the lower branches of the sacred service; and, lastly, when they had attained their thirtieth year, they were fully instituted in their office. Jennings points out the analogy between this and the usages among the virgin priestesses of Vesta. They were bound to the strictest chastity for thirty years, the first ten of which they spent in learning the mysteries of their profession; the second ten they ministered in holy things; and the last ten they were employed in bringing up young novices. (See Jennings's · Jewish Antiquities.') Darid altered to twenty years the period for the commencement of the Levitical service, and to this he was avowedly influenced by the consideration that their labours had become less onerous, and required less bodily strength than in the times when they had charge of a moveable tabernacle.
—“ until fifty years.”—This direction, for the cessation of the services of the Levites at the age of fifty, is more fully repeated in chap. viii. 28, but it is there immediately added, that although they were no longer to perform the customary service, they remained still in attendance“ to keep the charge,” &c. From this it seems that they were not dismissed when they reached the age of fifty ; but, while thenceforth exempted from all laborious employment, continued to exercise the easier parts of their ministry, and perhaps instructed the younger Levites in the duties of their office. The exceptions from laborious service probably referred in a particular manner to the toilsome duty of conveying the tabernacle and its various utensils. The Levites also were so numerous, in proportion to the work they had to do, that there was the less occasion to require from individuals a protracted period of active service.
things of the children of Israel, which they 1 The unclean are removed out of the camp. 5 Res. bring unto the priest, shall be his. titution is to be made in trespasses. 11- The trial 10 And every man's hallowed things shall of jealousy.
be his : whatsoever any man giveth the And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying, priest, it shall be "his.
2 Command the children of Israel, that 11 | And the LORD spake unto Moses, they put out of the camp every 'leper, and saying, every one that hath an ?issue, and whoso- 12 Speak unto the children of Israel, and ever is defiled by the dead :
say unto them, If any man's wife go aside, 3 Both male and female shall ye put out, and commit a trespass against him, without the camp shall ye put them; that 13 And a man lie with her carnally, and they defile not their camps, in the midst it be hid from the eyes of her husband, and whereof I dwell.
be kept close, and she be defiled, and there 4 And the children of Israel did so, and be no witness against her, neither she be put em out without the camp: as the LORD
taken with the manner; spake unto Moses, so did the children of 14 And the spirit of jealousy come upon Israel.
him, and he be jealous of his wife, and she 5. And the LORD spake unto Moses, be defiled: or if the spirit of jealousy come saying,
upon him, and he be jealous of his wife, and 6 Speak unto the children of Israel, she be not defiled : "When a man or woman shall commit any 15 Then shall the man bring his wife sin that men commit, to do a trespass against unto the priest, and he shall bring her offerthe LORD, and that person be guilty; ing for her, the tenth part of an ephah of
7 Then they shall confess their sin which barley meal; he shall pour no oil upon it, they have done : and he shall recompense nor put frankincense thereon ; for it is an his trespass 'with the principal thereof
, and offering of jealousy, an offering of memorial, add unto it the fifth part thereof
, and give bringing iniquity to remembrance. it unto him against whom he hath tres- 16 And the priest shall bring her near, passed.
and set her before the LORD: 8 But if the man have no kinsman to 17 And the priest shall take holy water in recompense the trespass unto, let the tres- an earthen vessel; and of the dust that is in pass be recompensed unto the Lord, even the floor of the tabernacle the priest shall to the priest; beside the ram of the atone- take, and put it into the water; ment, whereby an atonement shall be made 18 And the priest shall set the woman for him.
before the LORD, and uncover the woman's 9 And every offering of all the holy | head, and put the offering of memorial in her hands, which is the jealousy offering : 25 Then the priest shall take the jeaand the priest shall have in his hand the lousy offering out of the woman's hand, and bitter water that causeth the curse:
1 Levit. 13. 3.
% Levit. 15. 2,
8 Levit. 31. 1.
4 Levit. 6.3.
5 Levit. 6.5.
6 Or, heave-effering.
7 Levit. 10. 13.
shall wave the offering before the LORD, and 19 And the priest shall charge her by an offer it upon the altar : oath, and say unto the woman, If no man 26 And the priest shall take an handful have lain with thee, and if thou hast not of the offering, even the memorial thereof, gone aside to uncleanness & 'with another in- and burn it upon the altar, and afterward stead of thy husband be thou free from this shall cause the woman to drink the water. bitter water that causeth the curse :
27 And when he hath made her to drink 20 But if thou hasi gone aside to another the water, then it shall come to pass, that, if instead of thy husband, and if thou be de- she be defiled, and have done trespass filed, and some man have lain with thee against her husband, that the water that beside thine husband :
causeth the curse shall enter into her, and 21 Then the priest shall charge the wo- become bitter, and her belly shall swell, and man with an oath of cursing, and the priest her thigh shall rot: and the woman shall be shall
say unto the woman, The Lord make a curse among her people. thee a curse and an oath among thy people, 28 And if the woman be not defiled, but when the Lord doth make thy thigh to 'rot, be clean ; then she shall be free, and shall and thy belly to swell;
conceive seed. 22 Ănd this water that causeth the curse 29 This is the law of jealousies, when a shall go into thy bowels, to make thy belly wife goeth aside to another instead of her to swell, and thy thigh to rot: And the wo- husband, and is defiled ; man shall, say Amen, amen.
30 Or when the spirit of jealousy cometh 23 And the priest shall write these curses upon him, and he be jealous over his wife, in a book, and he shall blot them out with and shall set the woman before the LORD, the bitter water:
and the priest shall execute upon her all 24 And he shall cause the woman to drink this law. the bitter water that causeth the curse: and 31 Then shall the man be guiltless from the water that causeth the curse shall enter iniquity, and this woman shall bear her into her, and become bitter.
iniquity. 8 Or, being in the power of thy husband. 9 Heb. under thy husband. Heb. fall. Verse 2. “Put out of the camp erery leper.”—This exclusion of lepers from society has been acted upon in nearly every country; and it affords almost the only instance in which any kind of attention is paid in the East to the prevention of contagion. Europe seems to have taken from the East not only the disease, but the manner of treating the leper. It seems that the leprosy was introduced into Europe by the crusaders and pilgrims, on their return from the East; although some French writers say it was introduced, at least into their country, by trade with Egypt, Palestine, and Syria. At first, until lazarettoes were established, the lepers were treated with greater severity than their condition warranted; very much as the Orientals at present treat them, and perhaps as the Jews did. Indeed the idea of the usages on this point which we find in other nations, seems to have been suggested, generally, by the course which Moses was directed to take. In Normandy, for instance, lepers could not inherit any property while their malady continued ; they could not be witnesses in any case; and they were expelled from all intercourse with men, banished to small huts by the way-side, and furnished with a grey cloak, a cap, and a wallet. They were obliged to give the approaching stranger warning of their proximity by striking the clapper-dish with which they were furnished. At last hospitals were built for their reception. Almost every town had one such hospital; and we find Louis the Seventh, of France, bequeathing legacies to no less than two thousand such establishments. In the twelfth century an order of knighthood, dedicated to St. Lazarus, was instituted, the members of which were entrusted with the charge of lepers, and the control of the hospitals, which were then first called “ lazar-houses,” or “ lazarettoes.” When the disorder ceased to be strange, the lepers were allowed to live in more comfort than before. This we gather from the decree of the General Council of Lateran, in 1179, which censures certain of the clergy for preventing lepers from erecting churches for themselves, notwithstanding they were prohibited from entering other churches, and it was decreed, that whenever a sufficient number of lepers were living together, they should be allo: ed a church, a cemetery, and a priest ; and should be exempted from paying tithes upon the fruits of their gardens, or on the cattle which they fed. The leprous virus seems to have weakened in the course of time, so that since the sixteenth century leprosy has ceased, in Europe, to be a common disease, or remarkable for its malignancy. The manner in which lepers were formerly treated in Europe is most touchingly described in an old metrical romance, published in Weber's Collection. It relates how a certain knight, called Amiloun, of great wealth and power, became a leper, and was without pity cast forth, forlorn and poor, to beg his bread through the world. During three years of his calamity he lived upon casual charity, occupying a lodge by the highway, at no greater distance than five miles from the splendid halls of which he had once been lord, and where all eyes had looked up to him. The exclusion of the leper from society was not, even in ancient Asia, a practice peculiar to the Jews: a similar usage among the Persians attracted the attention of Herodotus. He says, that a leper was furbidden to enter a town, or to hold intercourse with other Persians; and if a foreigner appeared to be infected with this disease the mob expelled him from the country (Clio. 138). Such usages still, more or less, prevail in Asia and North Africa, among people who do not think the least precaution against the plague or cholera necessary: but, judging from personal observation, we think that in Asia the disease has now much abated in frequency and virulence. The comparatively mild bohak is the form in which it usually appears, even in the countries where the disorder is or
was endemic. Small societies of excluded lepers may still be sometimes seen outside the towns. They in general live miserably in paltry huts. Many of them are beggars, going out into the roads to solicit alms, which they generally receive in a wooden bowl; charitable people also sometimes bring different articles of food, which they leave on the ground at a short distance from the hut of the lepers for whom it is intended. They are generally obliged to wear a distinctive badge of some kind or other, differing in different neighbourhoods, so that people may know them at first sight, and be warned to avoid them.
17, “ Holy water,”—That is, water from the laver.
22. “ Amen, amen."--This is an instance of what we have already mentioned, that an oath was not pronounced at length by the persons who took it, but was read or pronounced to them by a proper officer. When he had finished, the party swearing appropriated its terins as his own by saying, AMEN, AMEN!-"So let it be”-or some equivalent expression. Although, however, this was the formulary of assent to an oath, it did not in all cases bear that force, being sometimes merely a protestation. The word amen, like the words hallelujah and hosannah, has been retained in the religious services of the western Christian church, and is understood as an expression of assent on the part of the people to that which the minister has said in their name; thus formally adopting his expressions. It was probably thought that the word, as well as the others we have mentioned, possessed in the original a peculiar emphasis and force, for which it would be difficult to find a precise equivalent in any European language.
23. « Book.” - The whole context is quite averse to this rendering of the word 700 (sepher) in this place. The word is generally applicable to every roll, scroll, or tablet, on which any thing was written; and the context must in all cases determine the probability as to what is intended. The Rabbinical writers think that the curse in this awful ceremony was written on a scroll of vellum or parchment. This we may very well doubt; but without at present inquiring whether the art of preparing vellum was known at this time, it seems more probable that, for such a temporary purpose as the present, the writing was made on a tablet of wood, properly prepared. Such tablets were very anciently used, and still are so, in some countries, not only for writing intended to be soon obliterated, but for that which is designed to be permanent. Whatever was used in the present instance, it was certainly nothing at all resembling in its form the idea which the word - book " suggests to our minds.
" Blot them out.” – It would seem from this that the ink made no permanent marks on the skin, linen, wood, or whatever other substance the words were written on. It is precisely the same with the ink now in use in the East. In its composition no calx of iron, or other material that could make a permanent dye, is employed ; and although the writing made with it has an intense and brilliant black colour, which will remain unchanged for ages, the characters may at any time be spunged or washed out with water. We have, while writing this note, tried this; and find it quite easy to obliterate, by the slightest action of the moistened finger, words which were written several years since, at different times, with inks procured in different countries of Western Asia. It is therefore unnecessary to suppose, with some who judge only from our own ink, that the ink employed on the present occasion was prepared in a peculiar manner, and used only on this occasion.
24. “ Shall cause the woman to drink the bitter water.”_There is still a strong impression entertained among the inhabitants of Africa and some Asiatic countries, that the full force of a charm, or of a prayer or curse, is obtained by having it written, and by washing the writing off in water, and drinking the draught. The idea on which this is founded is sufficiently intelligible when the virtue of a written charm is believed--and such belief is by no means rare in countries nearer home than those of Africa or Asia. It is then an obvious act of the mind, or rather of superstition, to conclude that the virtue inhering in the written charm may be best imbibed by its words being swallowed, which they cannot well be by any process more convenient than that of washing them off in water. Travellers, particularly African travellers, abound in instances of their being applied to for written charms, by drinking the words of which the applicants believed that they woull obtain some desired good, some security from evil, or a remedy for disease. One instance from Mungo Park will illustrate this subject. * At Koolkorro, my landlord brought me his writing-board, that I might write him a saphie to protect him from wicked men. I wrote the board full, from top to bottom, on both sides; and my landlord, to be certain of having the whole force of the charm, washed the writing from the board into a calabash with a little water, and having said a few prayers over it, drank this powerful draught ; after which, lest a single word should escape, he licked the board until it was quite dry." ( Travels,' p. 236.)
29, “ This is the law of jealousies,”—The law punished proved adultery with death. But cases would frequently occur connected with which the husband might suspect adultery without being able to prove it, and, in that case, the man and wife could not fail to live miserably together, or else the man would feel inclined to act on his own impressions, and take the law into his own hands. To meet such a case, a trial was instituted, by which the innocence or guilt of a suspected wife might be established beyond question. The trial of a case only of suspected guilt, and incapable of proof, could not be other than an ordeal; and no one who pays attention to this awful process can doubt that it must have had a powerful effect for the intended purpose, or believe that any really guilty woman could go through it and brave its results. The known punishment for proved adultery, and this trial for that which admitted no proof, must have tended much to keep the crime in check. It must have been an awful thing even to the innocent, who knew that the result would clear their character from suspicion ; and this perhaps was intended in order that their conduct might not only be free from actual guilt, but that they might avoid all conduct calculated to give cause for suspicion, We read no instance in which the trial to k place; and if the adininistration of the ordeal were really infrequent, we may regard that as an evidence of its practical utility. For it would seem that the trial and its result were so dreadful, that the guilty rather confessed their crime, as they were earnestly exhorted to do, than go through it. We might particularly expect this, if the Rabbins are right when they say that a woman who confessed in such circumstances was not put to death, but only divorced without dowry. The innocent only would then drink the bitter water; and as it produced no marked effect on them, this may have led to the gradual disuse of the trial, under the impression that it had ceased to be operative. The Jews, however, say that this form of trial continued in use till towards the latter end of the second temple; for they were of opinion that the bitter water would have no effect if the husband himself were guilty of a similar crime to that with which he charged his wife; and they add, that the adulteries of men became so common, that the ordeal ceased to distinguish the guilty woman from the innocent. It will not fail to be observed that this ordeal was such as, at all events, to be harmless to the innocent, which is more than can be said of many that have been or are in use in different countries in all parts of the world. This was the character of the only ordeal in use among the Hebrews. But this character belonged to few of those which prevailed among other nations, which generally rendered it only possible for the innocent to escape by accident, or made the danger equal to the innocent and the guilty. A few were so far favourable to the innocent as to be incapable of doing harm, except by accident, to either