4:21] The Eternal One spoke to Moses: 22] Take a census of the Gershonites also, by their ancestral house and by their clans. 23] Record them from the age of thirty years up to the age of fifty, all who are subject to service in the performance of tasks for the Tent of Meeting. 24] These are the duties of the Gershonite clans as to labor and porterage: 25] they shall carry the cloths of the Tabernacle, the Tent of Meeting with its covering, the covering of dolphin skin that is on top of it, and the screen for the entrance of the Tent of Meeting; 26] the hangings of the enclosure, the screen at the entrance of the gate of the enclosure that surrounds the Tabernacle, the cords thereof, and the altar, and all their service equipment and all their accessories; and they shall perform the service. 27] All the duties of the Gershonites, all their porterage and all their service, shall be performed on orders from Aaron and his sons; you shall make them responsible for attending to all their porterage. 28] Those are the duties of the Gershonite clans for the Tent of Meeting; they shall attend to them under the direction of Ithamar son of Aaron the priest.
29] As for the Merarites, you shall record them by the clans of their ancestral house; 30] you shall record them from the age of thirty years up to the age of fifty, all who are subject to service in the performance of the duties for the Tent of Meeting. 31] These are their porterage tasks in connection with their various duties for the Tent of Meeting: the planks, the bars, the posts, and the sockets of the Tabernacle; 32] the posts around the enclosure and their sockets, pegs, and cords—all these furnishings and their service: you shall list by name the objects that are their porterage tasks. 33] Those are the duties of the Merarite clans, pertaining to their various duties in the Tent of Meeting under the direction of Ithamar son of Aaron the priest.
34] So Moses, Aaron, and the chieftains of the community recorded the Kohathites by the clans of their ancestral house, 35] from the age of thirty years up to the age of fifty, all who were subject to service for work relating to the Tent of Meeting. 36] Those recorded by their clans came to 2,750. 37] That was the enrollment of the Kohathite clans, all those who performed duties relating to the Tent of Meeting, whom Moses and Aaron recorded at the command of the Eternal through Moses.
38] The Gershonites who were recorded by the clans of their ancestral house, 39] from the age of thirty years up to the age of fifty, all who were subject to service for work relating to the Tent of Meeting— 40] those recorded by the clans of their ancestral house came to 2,630. 41] That was the enrollment of the Gershonite clans, all those performing duties relating to the Tent of Meeting whom Moses and Aaron recorded at the command of the Eternal.
42] The enrollment of the Merarite clans by the clans of their ancestral house, 43] from the age of thirty years up to the age of fifty, all who were subject to service for work relating to the Tent of Meeting— 44] those recorded by their clans came to 3,200. 45] That was the enrollment of the Merarite clans which Moses and Aaron recorded at the command of the Eternal through Moses.
46] All the Levites whom Moses, Aaron, and the chieftains of Israel recorded by the clans of their ancestral houses, 47] from the age of thirty years up to the age of fifty, all who were subject to duties of service and porterage relating to the Tent of Meeting— 48] those recorded came to 8,580. 49] Each one was given responsibility for his service and porterage at the command of the Eternal through Moses, and each was recorded as the Eternal had commanded Moses.
5:1] The Eternal One spoke to Moses, saying: 2] Instruct the Israelites to remove from camp anyone with an eruption or a discharge and anyone defiled by a corpse. 3] Remove male and female alike; put them outside the camp so that they do not defile the camp of those in whose midst I dwell.
4] The Israelites did so, putting them outside the camp; as the Eternal had spoken to Moses, so the Israelites did.
5] The Eternal One spoke to Moses, saying: 6] Speak to the Israelites: When men or women individually commit any wrong toward a fellow human being, thus breaking faith with the Eternal, and they realize their guilt, 7] they shall confess the wrong that they have done. They shall make restitution in the principal amount and add one-fifth to it, giving it to the one who was wronged. 8] If that party [is deceased and] has no kin to whom restitution can be made, the amount repaid shall go to the Eternal for the priest—in addition to the ram of expiation with which expiation is made on their behalf. 9] So, too, any gift among the sacred donations that the Israelites offer shall be the priest’s. 10] And each shall retain his sacred donations: each priest shall keep what is given to him.
11] The Eternal One spoke to Moses, saying: 12] Speak to the Israelite people and say to them:
If any wife has gone astray and broken faith with her husband, 13] in that a man has had carnal relations with her unbeknown to her husband, and she keeps secret the fact that she has defiled herself without being forced, and there is no witness against her— 14] but a fit of jealousy comes over him and he is wrought up about the wife who has defiled herself; or if a fit of jealousy comes over one and he is wrought up about his wife although she has not defiled herself— 15] the husband shall bring his wife to the priest. And he shall bring as an offering for her one-tenth of an eifah of barley flour. No oil shall be poured upon it and no frankincense shall be laid on it, for it is a meal offering of jealousy, a meal offering of remembrance which recalls wrongdoing.
16] The priest shall bring her forward and have her stand before the Eternal. 17] The priest shall take sacral water in an earthen vessel and, taking some of the earth that is on the floor of the Tabernacle, the priest shall put it into the water. 18] After he has made the wife stand before the Eternal, the priest shall bare the wife’s head and place upon her hands the meal offering of remembrance, which is a meal offering of jealousy. And in the priest’s hands shall be the water of bitterness that induces the spell. 19] The priest shall adjure the wife, saying to her, “If no other party has lain with you, if you have not gone astray in defilement while married to your husband, be immune to harm from this water of bitterness that induces the spell. 20] But if you have gone astray while married to your husband and have defiled yourself, if a man other than your husband has had carnal relations with you”— 21] here the priest shall administer the curse of adjuration to the wife, as the priest goes on to say to the wife—“may the Eternal make you a curse and an imprecation among your people, as the Eternal causes your thigh to sag and your belly to distend; 22] may this water that induces the spell enter your body, causing the belly to distend and the thigh to sag.” And the wife shall say, “Amen, amen!”
23] The priest shall put these curses down in writing and rub it off into the water of bitterness. 24] He is to make the wife drink the water of bitterness that induces the spell, so that the spell-inducing water may enter into her to bring on bitterness. 25] Then the priest shall take from the wife’s hand the meal offering of jealousy, elevate the meal offering before the Eternal, and present it on the altar. 26] The priest shall scoop out of the meal offering a token part of it and turn it into smoke on the altar. Last, he shall make the wife drink the water.
27] Once he has made her drink the water—if she has defiled herself by breaking faith with her husband, the spell-inducing water shall enter into her to bring on bitterness, so that her belly shall distend and her thigh shall sag; and the wife shall become a curse among her people. 28] But if the wife has not defiled herself and is pure, she shall be unharmed and able to retain seed.
29] This is the ritual in cases of jealousy, when a wife goes astray while married to her husband and defiles herself, 30] or when a fit of jealousy comes over a husband and he is wrought up over his wife: the wife shall be made to stand before the Eternal and the priest shall carry out all this ritual with her. 31] The husband shall be clear of guilt; but that wife shall suffer for her guilt.
Translation from The Torah: A Modern Commentary, copyright (c) 2016 by CCAR Press. All rights reserved. Translation of Exodus; Leviticus; Numbers; Deuteronomy from NJPS © 1962, 1985, 1999; CJPS © 2006. Used and adapted by CCAR Press with permission from The Jewish Publication Society and the University of Nebraska Press. No part of this translation may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, distributed, or be transmitted without express written permission from the Central Conference of American Rabbis. For permission, please contact CCAR Press.