1
THEN he brought me back by way of the gate of the outer sanctuary which looks toward the east;
and behold, it was shut.
2
Then the LORD said to me, This gate shall be shut;
it shall not be opened, and no man shall enter in by it because the LORD, the God of Israel, will enter in by it;
therefore it shall be shut.
3
Only the high priest shall sit in it to eat bread before the LORD;
but he shall enter by way of the portico of the gate, and shall go out by the same way.
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Then he brought me by the way of the north gate before the house: and I looked, and behold, the glory of the LORD filled the house of the LORD;
and I fell upon my face.
5
And the LORD said to me.
Son of man, mark in your heart and see with your eyes and hear with your ears all that I say to you concerning all the ordinances of the temple and all its patterns;
and remember well the entrances of the house and the exits of the sanctuary.
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Then say to the rebellious house of Israel, Thus says the LORD God: Have you not committed abominations enough, O house of Israel?
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But you are also bringing strangers, who are uncircumcised in heart and uncircumcised in flesh, to be in my sanctuary, to pollute my house;
when you offer my bread, the fat and the blood, and you nullified my covenant with all your abominations.
8
And you have not had charge of my sanctuary;
but you have made the keepers of my sanctuary guards for yourselves.
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Thus says the LORD God: No foreigner, uncircumcised in his heart and uncircumcised in his flesh, shall enter into my sanctuary, nor any strangers who are among the children of Israel.
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Neither shall the Levites who went away far from me when Israel went astray from me after their idols, and who have borne their iniquity.
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For these Levites once served in my sanctuary and ministered at the gates of the temple;
and they slaughtered burnt offerings and sacrifices for the people, and stood before the people and ministered to them.
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But because they ministered to them before their idols and became a stumbling block of iniquity to the house of Israel;
therefore I have lifted up my hand against them, says the LORD God, and they have borne their iniquity.
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And they shall not come near to me, to minister to me, nor to come near to any of my holy things in the Holy of Holies;
but they shall bear all their shame and all their abominations which they have committed.
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And I will put them in charge of the temple, and make them laborers for all that shall be done in it.
15
But the priests, the descendants of Zadok, and the Levites who had charge of my sanctuary when the children of Israel went astray from me, they shall come near to me to minister to me and they shall stand before me to offer to me the fat and blood, says the LORD God;
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They shall enter into my sanctuary, and they shall come near to my table to minister to me, and they shall keep my charge:
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¶ And when they enter the gate of the inner court, they shall be clothed with linen garments;
they shall not wear any garments made of wool, while they minister at the gate of the inner court.
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Also when they are within the inner court, they shall wear linen mitres upon their heads, and shall have linen breeches upon their loins.
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And when they go out into the outer court to the people, they shall put off their garments in which they ministered and leave them in the holy chambers, and they shall put on other garments, that they may not sanctify the people with their garments.
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Neither shall they shave their heads nor let their locks grow long;
but they shall have their hair cut.
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Neither shall the priests drink wine when they enter into the inner court.
22
Neither shall they marry a widow nor her that is put away;
but they shall marry a virgin of the descendants of the house of Israel, or a widow who is the widow of a priest.
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And they shall teach my people the difference between the holy and the unconsecrated, and cause them to discern between the unclean and the clean.
24
And in the case of lawsuits they shall be appointed as judges;
and they shall judge according to my judgments;
and they shall keep my laws and my statutes in all my appointed feasts;
and they shall hallow my sabbaths.
25
And they shall not attend the funeral of a dead person, lest they defile themselves, except for father or for mother or for son or for daughter or for brother or for his virgin sister who had never been married, otherwise they may become unclean.
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And after a priest is unclean, he shall count for himself seven days, and then he shall be clean.
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And on the day that he goes into the sanctuary, to the inner court to minister in the sanctuary, he shall offer his sin offering, says the LORD God.
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And the sanctuary shall be to them for an inheritance;
for I am their inheritance;
and you shall give them no possession in Israel;
for I am their possession.
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They shall eat the meal offering and the meat of the sin offering, and every dedicated thing in Israel shall be theirs.
30
And the first of all the first-born of the sheep and cattle and of all things which you set aside for the LORD, shall be for the priests;
and you shall also give the first of your dough to the priests, so that a blessing may rest in your houses.
31
The priests shall not eat of anything that is dead of itself, or torn, whether it be fowl or beast.