Leviticus 10

The LORD kills Nadab and Abihu

1 Nadab and Abihu were sons of Aaron. They put hot material in the pots that they used to burn incense. They threw incense over the hot material. They offered the incense to the LORD. This was a wrong thing to do. The LORD had not told them that they should do it. So it was wrong. 2 The LORD was angry and he sent fire to burn them. They died there in front of the LORD's altar. 3 Then Moses said to Aaron, ‘This is what the LORD said,

“People may come near to me. But those people must see that I am holy.

All the people must give honour to me.” ’

Aaron did not reply.

10:3Nadab and Abihu were the oldest of Aaron's 4 sons.

4 Mishael and Elzaphan were sons of Aaron's father's brother, Uzziel. Moses said to them, ‘Carry Nadab and Abihu away from the altar. Take your cousins outside the camp.’ 5 Nadab and Abihu were still wearing their robes. Mishael and Elzaphan carried Nadab and Abihu outside the camp. Moses had told them that they must do that.

10:5Aaron could not touch dead bodies, as that would make him unclean.

6 Moses said to Aaron and to his sons, ‘Comb your hair. Do not tear your clothes. If you do that, you will die. And the LORD will be angry with all of the people. But Israel's people can show that they are sad. They are sad because the LORD has killed Nadab and Abihu with fire. 7 If you go away from the door of the Tent of Meeting you will die. You will die because the LORD's holy oil is on you.’ So Aaron and his sons did as Moses had said.

8 The LORD then said to Aaron, 9 ‘Do not drink wine before you go into the Tent of Meeting. And do not drink anything that contains alcohol. If you do, you will die. This rule is for you and for all your sons and grandsons. 10 You must know what is holy. And you must know what is not holy. You must know what you can use. And you must know what you must not use to worship me. 11 You must teach Israel's people all the rules that I, the LORD, gave to them by Moses.’

12 Moses said to Aaron and to his two other sons Eleazar and Ithamar, ‘The grain offering is most holy. Take the part that you did not burn in front of the LORD. And make it into bread. Do not use yeast. Take it to the side of the altar and eat it. 13 Eat it in a holy place. The LORD has said that it is your part of the grain offering. It is for you and for your sons. 14 You and your sons and daughters can eat the breast meat that you held up to God. And all your family can eat the top part of the leg. Eat the meat in a place that is clean and ready for God's use. It is your part of the people's fellowship gift. 15 Bring the top of the leg and the breast meat. Lift them up to the LORD. The LORD has given them to you and to your children. Lift them up with the fat parts of the burnt offering. He told you that you should do this.’

16 Moses looked for the goat that was to atone for the people's sin. Moses was angry with Eleazar and Ithamar, sons of Aaron. He was angry because they had burnt the goat. 17 Moses said to them, ‘This gift was for the LORD. It was a very holy gift. It was to atone for the people's sins. Why did you not take it to the holy place and eat it? 18 You did not bring the blood into the holy place. I told you that you must eat its meat in the Tent of Meeting.’ 19 Aaron said to Moses, ‘My sons sacrificed their gifts to the LORD today. But very bad things have happened to me today. I would not have given the LORD any pleasure if I had eaten the sin offering today.’ 20 When Moses heard this, he was not angry any longer.