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Numbers 15

The Fourth Book of Moses, called Numbers

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Chapter 16

1

Now Korah, the son of Izhar, the son of Kohath, the son of Levi, with Dathan and Abiram, the sons of Eliab, and On, the son of Pallu, the son of Reuben, made themselves ready,

2

And came before Moses, with certain of the children of Israel, two hundred and fifty chiefs of the people, men of good name who had a place in the meeting of the people.

3

They came together against Moses and against Aaron, and said to them, You take overmuch on yourselves, seeing that all the people are holy, every one of them, and the Lord is among them; why then have you put yourselves in authority over the people of the Lord?

4

And Moses, hearing this, went down on his face;

5

And he said to Korah and his band, In the morning the Lord will make clear who are his, and who is holy, and who may come near him: the man of his selection will be caused to come near him.

6

So do this: let Korah and all his band take vessels for burning perfumes;

7

And put spices on the fire in them before the Lord tomorrow; then the man marked out by the Lord will be holy: you take overmuch on yourselves, you sons of Levi.

8

And Moses said to Korah, Give ear now, you sons of Levi:

9

Does it seem only a small thing to you that the God of Israel has made you separate from the rest of Israel, letting you come near himself to do the work of the House of the Lord, and to take your place before the people to do what has to be done for them;

10

Letting you, and all your brothers the sons of Levi, come near to him? and would you now be priests?

11

So you and all your band have come together against the Lord; and Aaron, who is he, that you are crying out against him?

12

Then Moses sent for Dathan and Abiram, the sons of Eliab: and they said, We will not come up:

13

Is it not enough that you have taken us from a land flowing with milk and honey, to put us to death in the waste land, but now you are desiring to make yourself a chief over us?

14

And more than this, you have not taken us into a land flowing with milk and honey, or given us a heritage of fields and vine-gardens: will you put out the eyes of these men? We will not come up.

15

Then Moses was very angry, and said to the Lord, Give no attention to their offering: not one of their asses have I taken, or done wrong to any of them.

16

And Moses said to Korah, You and all your band are to come before the Lord tomorrow, you and they and Aaron:

17

And let every man take a vessel for burning perfumes, and put sweet spices in them; let every man take his vessel before the Lord, two hundred and fifty vessels; you and Aaron and everyone with his vessel.

18

So every man took his vessel and they put fire in them, with spices, and came to the door of the Tent of meeting with Moses and Aaron.

19

And Korah made all the people come together against them to the door of the Tent of meeting: and the glory of the Lord was seen by all the people.

20

And the Lord said to Moses and Aaron,

21

Come out from among this people, so that I may send sudden destruction on them.

22

Then falling down on their faces they said, O God, the God of the spirits of all flesh, because of one man's sin will your wrath be moved against all the people?

23

And the Lord said to Moses,

24

Say to the people, Come away from the tent of Korah Dathan, and Abiram.

25

So Moses got up and went to Dathan and Abiram, and the responsible men of Israel went with him.

26

And he said to the people, Come away now from the tents of these evil men, without touching anything of theirs, or you may be taken in the punishment of their sins.

27

So on every side they went away from the tent of Korah Dathan, and Abiram: and Dathan and Abiram came out to the door of their tents, with their wives and their sons and their little ones.

28

And Moses said, Now you will see that the Lord has sent me to do all these works, and I have not done them of myself.

29

If these men have the common death of men, or if the natural fate of all men overtakes them, then the Lord has not sent me.

30

But if the Lord does something new, opening the earth to take them in, with everything which is theirs, and they go down living into the underworld, then it will be clear to you that the Lord has not been honoured by these men.

31

And while these words were on his lips, the earth under them was parted in two;

32

And the earth, opening her mouth, took them in, with their families, and all the men who were joined to Korah, and their goods.

33

So they and all theirs went down living into the underworld, and the earth was shut over them, and they were cut off from among the meeting of the people.

34

And all Israel round about them went in flight at their cry, For fear, said they, that we go down into the heart of the earth.

35

Then fire came out from the Lord, burning up the two hundred and fifty men who were offering the perfume.

36

And the Lord said to Moses,

37

Say to Eleazar, the son of Aaron the priest, that he is to take out of the flames the vessels with the perfumes in them, turning the fire out of them, for they are holy;

38

And let the vessels of those men, who with their lives have made payment for their sin, be hammered out into plates as a cover for the altar; for they have been offered before the Lord and are holy; so that they may be a sign to the children of Israel.

39

So Eleazar the priest took the brass vessels which had been offered by those who were burned up, and they were hammered out to make a cover for the altar:

40

To be a sign, kept in memory for ever by the children of Israel, that no man who is not of the seed of Aaron has the right of burning spices before the Lord, so that he may not be like Korah and his band: as the Lord said to him by the mouth of Moses.

41

But on the day after, all the children of Israel made an outcry against Moses and against Aaron, saying, You have put to death the Lord's people.

42

Now when the people had come together against Moses and Aaron, looking in the direction of the Tent of meeting, they saw the cloud covering it, and the glory of the Lord came before their eyes.

43

Then Moses and Aaron came to the front of the Tent of meeting.

44

And the Lord said to Moses,

45

Come out from among this people, so that I may send sudden destruction on them. And they went down on their faces.

46

And Moses said to Aaron, Take your vessel and put in it fire from the altar, and sweet spices, and take it quickly into the meeting of the people, and make them free from sin: for wrath has gone out from the Lord, and the disease is starting.

47

And at the words of Moses, Aaron took his vessel, and went running among the people; and even then the disease had made a start among them; and he put spices in his vessel to take away the sin of the people.

48

And he took his place between the dead and the living: and the disease was stopped.

49

Now fourteen thousand, seven hundred deaths were caused by that disease, in addition to those who came to their end because of what Korah had done.

50

Then Aaron went back to Moses to the door of the Tent of meeting: and the disease came to a stop.

Numbers 17

 

 

 

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