19 The Lord spoke to Moses and Aaron: 2 “This is the ordinance of the law which the Lord has commanded: ‘Instruct 2 the Israelites to bring 3 you a red 4 heifer 5 without blemish, which has no defect 6 and has never carried a yoke. 3 You must give it to Eleazar the priest so that he can take it outside the camp, and it must be slaughtered before him. 7 4 Eleazar the priest is to take 8 some of its blood with his finger, and sprinkle some of the blood seven times 9 directly in front of the tent of meeting. 5 Then the heifer must be burned 10 in his sight – its skin, its flesh, its blood, and its offal is to be burned. 11 6 And the priest must take cedar wood, hyssop, 12 and scarlet wool and throw them into the midst of the fire where the heifer is burning. 13 7 Then the priest must wash 14 his clothes and bathe himself 15 in water, and afterward he may come 16 into the camp, but the priest will be ceremonially unclean until evening. 8 The one who burns it 17 must wash his clothes in water and bathe himself in water. He will be ceremonially unclean until evening.
9 “‘Then a man who is ceremonially clean must gather up the ashes of the red heifer and put them in a ceremonially clean place outside the camp. They must be kept 18 for the community of the Israelites for use in the water of purification 19 – it is a purification for sin. 20 10 The one who gathers the ashes of the heifer must wash his clothes and be ceremonially unclean until evening. This will be a permanent ordinance both for the Israelites and the resident foreigner who lives among them.
11 “‘Whoever touches 21 the corpse 22 of any person 23 will be ceremonially unclean 24 seven days. 12 He must purify himself 25 with water on the third day and on the seventh day, and so will be clean. But if he does not purify himself on the third day and the seventh day, then he will not be clean. 13 Anyone who touches the corpse of any dead person and does not purify himself defiles the tabernacle of the Lord. And that person must be cut off from Israel, 26 because the water of purification was not sprinkled on him. He will be unclean; his uncleanness remains on him.
14 “‘This is the law: When a man dies 27 in a tent, anyone who comes into the tent and all who are in the tent will be ceremonially unclean seven days. 15 And every open container that has no covering fastened on it is unclean. 16 And whoever touches the body of someone killed with a sword in the open fields, 28 or the body of someone who died of natural causes, 29 or a human bone, or a grave, will be unclean seven days. 30
17 “‘For a ceremonially unclean person you must take 31 some of the ashes of the heifer 32 burnt for purification from sin and pour 33 fresh running 34 water over them in a vessel. 18 Then a ceremonially clean person must take hyssop, dip it in the water, and sprinkle it on the tent, on all its furnishings, and on the people who were there, or on the one who touched a bone, or one killed, or one who died, or a grave. 19 And the clean person must sprinkle the unclean on the third day and on the seventh day; and on the seventh day he must purify him, 35 and then he must wash his clothes, and bathe in water, and he will be clean in the evening. 20 But the man who is unclean and does not purify himself, that person must be cut off from among the community, because he has polluted the sanctuary of the Lord; the water of purification was not sprinkled on him, so he is unclean.
21 “‘So this will be a perpetual ordinance for them: The one who sprinkles 36 the water of purification must wash his clothes, and the one who touches the water of purification will be unclean until evening. 37 22 And whatever the unclean person touches will be unclean, and the person who touches it will be unclean until evening.’”
20 Then the entire community of Israel 2 entered the wilderness of Zin in the first month, 3 and the people stayed in Kadesh. 4 Miriam died and was buried there. 5
2 And there was no water for the community, and so they gathered themselves together against Moses and Aaron. 3 The people contended 6 with Moses, saying, 7 “If only 8 we had died when our brothers died before the Lord! 4 Why 9 have you brought up the Lord’s community into this wilderness? So that 10 we and our cattle should die here? 5 Why 11 have you brought us up from Egypt only to bring us to 12 this dreadful place? It is no place for grain, or figs, or vines, or pomegranates; nor is there any water to drink!”
6 So Moses and Aaron went from the presence of the assembly to the entrance to the tent of meeting. They then threw themselves down with their faces to the ground, and the glory of the Lord appeared to them. 7 Then the Lord spoke to Moses: 8 “Take the staff and assemble the community, you and Aaron your brother, and then speak 13 to the rock before their eyes. It will pour forth 14 its water, and you will bring water out of the rock for them, and so you will give the community and their beasts water to drink.”
9 So Moses took the staff from before the Lord, just as he commanded him. 10 Then Moses and Aaron gathered the community together in front of the rock, and he said to them, “Listen, you rebels, 15 must we bring 16 water out of this rock for you?” 11 Then Moses raised his hand, and struck the rock twice with his staff. And water came out abundantly. So the community drank, and their beasts drank too.
12 Then the Lord spoke to Moses and Aaron, “Because you did not trust me enough 17 to show me as holy 18 before 19 the Israelites, therefore you will not bring this community into the land I have given them.” 20
13 These are the waters of Meribah, because the Israelites contended with the Lord, and his holiness was maintained 21 among them.
14 Moses 23 sent messengers from Kadesh to the king of Edom: 24 “Thus says your brother Israel: ‘You know all the hardships we have experienced, 25 15 how our ancestors went down into Egypt, and we lived in Egypt a long time, 26 and the Egyptians treated us and our ancestors badly. 27 16 So when we cried to the Lord, he heard our voice and sent a messenger, 28 and has brought us up out of Egypt. Now 29 we are here in Kadesh, a town on the edge of your country. 30 17 Please let us pass through 31 your country. We will not pass through the fields or through the vineyards, nor will we drink water from any well. We will go by the King’s Highway; 32 we will not turn to the right or the left until we have passed through your region.’” 33
18 But Edom said to him, “You will not pass through me, 34 or I will come out against 35 you with the sword.” 19 Then the Israelites said to him, “We will go along the highway, and if we 36 or our cattle drink any of your water, we will pay for it. We will only pass through on our feet, without doing anything else.”
20 But he said, “You may not pass through.” Then Edom came out against them 37 with a large and powerful force. 38 21 So Edom refused to give Israel passage through his border; therefore Israel turned away from him.
22 So the entire company of Israelites 39 traveled from Kadesh and came to Mount Hor. 40 23 And the Lord spoke to Moses and Aaron in Mount Hor, by the border of the land of Edom. He said: 24 “Aaron will be gathered to his ancestors, 41 for he will not enter into the land I have given to the Israelites because both of you 42 rebelled against my word 43 at the waters of Meribah. 25 Take Aaron and Eleazar his son, and bring them up on Mount Hor. 26 Remove Aaron’s priestly garments 44 and put them on Eleazar his son, and Aaron will be gathered to his ancestors 45 and will die there.”
27 So Moses did as the Lord commanded; and they went up Mount Hor in the sight 46 of the whole community. 28 And Moses removed Aaron’s garments and put them on his son Eleazar. So Aaron died there on the top of the mountain. And Moses and Eleazar came down from the mountain. 29 When all the community saw that Aaron was dead, the whole house of Israel mourned for Aaron thirty days.