Leviticus 22

1 The Lord said to Moses, 2 ‘Israel's people give gifts to God. Those gifts are holy. Tell Aaron and his sons that those things are holy. Tell them that they must remember that. They must give honour to my name. I am the Lord.

3 One of your sons may not be clean. That son must not come near the Lord's holy offerings. But perhaps he may not obey my rule. He might go near to the holy gifts. The priests who are clean must punish him. They must send him away. He must go from God's house. I am the Lord. This rule is for now and for all time. 4 If a son of Aaron has a skin disease, he must not eat the holy gifts. If pus is coming from his body, he is not clean. He must not eat the holy offerings until he is clean. He might touch something that has touched a dead body. Or if he touches an unclean man, he will become unclean. The man may be unclean because semen is coming from his body. 5 Aaron's son might touch an animal that moves on its stomach. Or he might touch a person who is not clean. If he does, Aaron's son will be unclean. 6 The son of Aaron who touches any of these things will be unclean until evening. He must not eat any of the holy gifts until he washes his body. 7 When the sun goes down, he will be clean. He can eat the holy gifts. They are his food. 8 He might find something that is dead. He must not eat it. He must not eat anything that an animal has torn. It will make him unclean. I am the Lord.

9 Aaron's sons must obey God's rules. If they do not obey them, it is a sin. They will die. I am the Lord who makes people holy. 10 Only a person who is from the priest's family can eat the holy gifts. Another person who is living in the priest's house must not eat the holy gifts. If a person is being paid to work for the priest, he must not eat the holy gifts. 11 A slave can eat the holy gifts if he was born in the priest's house. Or he can eat the holy gifts if the priest bought him. 12 A priest's daughter might marry a man who is not a priest. If she has done that, she must not eat the holy food. 13 A priest's daughter's husband might send her away. Or her husband might die. She might not have any children. She may go back to live in her father's house. Then she can eat her father's food.

14 A person might make a mistake and eat a holy gift. He must give back to the priest the same food. He must also give one fifth more. 15 The priest must not give the Lord's holy gifts to people who are not from Aaron's family. The gifts would become unclean. 16 If the people eat them they are sinning. They will have to pay for their sin. I am the Lord and I make them holy.’

Offerings that the Lord will not accept

17 The Lord said to Moses, 18 ‘Say this to Aaron, to his sons and to all the people. If any person gives a gift to the Lord, 19 he must give a bull, a sheep or a goat. The gift may be for a promise, or to thank God for something or for a friendship offering. The animal must be perfect. 20 They must not give any animal that is not perfect. The Lord will not accept that animal. 21 When a person brings an animal to the Lord as a special gift, it must be perfect. If it is, God will accept it. 22 A person must not give to the Lord an animal that cannot see. The animal must not have a skin disease. And pus must not be coming from its body. The person must not burn an animal to the Lord on the altar that is not perfect. 23 A person may give a bull or a sheep with a body that is the wrong shape. He can use it as an offering to eat with his friends (friendship offering). But God will not take this animal as a gift for a promise. That gift must be perfect. You must not put on the altar an animal that is not perfect. 24 A person must not give a gift to the Lord of an animal that has something wrong with its testicles. 25 This rule is for Israel's people. You must not take animals from foreigners and then offer them to God as sacrifices. God will not accept them on your behalf, because animals like that are not perfect.’

26 The Lord said to Moses, 27 ‘When a cow or a sheep or a goat is born, it must stay with its mother for seven days. From the eighth day the people can give it as a burnt offering to the Lord. 28 They must not kill a cow or a sheep and its baby on the same day.

29 When they sacrifice an animal to thank the Lord, they must sacrifice it in the proper way. This will give the Lord pleasure. 30 They must eat it on the day that they kill it. They must not keep any of it until the next day. I am the Lord.

31 The people must obey my rules. I am the Lord. 32 They must give honour to my holy name. My people must believe that I am holy. I am the Lord. I make people holy. 33 I brought you out of Egypt and I became your God. I am the Lord.’