Numbers 1:51
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New International Version
Whenever the tabernacle is to move, the Levites are to take it down, and whenever the tabernacle is to be set up, the Levites shall do it. Anyone else who approaches it is to be put to death.

New Living Translation
Whenever it is time for the Tabernacle to move, the Levites will take it down. And when it is time to stop, they will set it up again. But any unauthorized person who goes too near the Tabernacle must be put to death.

English Standard Version
When the tabernacle is to set out, the Levites shall take it down, and when the tabernacle is to be pitched, the Levites shall set it up. And if any outsider comes near, he shall be put to death.

Berean Study Bible
Whenever the tabernacle is to move, the Levites are to take it down, and whenever it is to be pitched, the Levites are to set it up. Any outsider who goes near it must be put to death.

New American Standard Bible
"So when the tabernacle is to set out, the Levites shall take it down; and when the tabernacle encamps, the Levites shall set it up. But the layman who comes near shall be put to death.

King James Bible
And when the tabernacle setteth forward, the Levites shall take it down: and when the tabernacle is to be pitched, the Levites shall set it up: and the stranger that cometh nigh shall be put to death.

Christian Standard Bible
Whenever the tabernacle is to move, the Levites are to take it down, and whenever it is to stop at a campsite, the Levites are to set it up. Any unauthorized person who comes near it is to be put to death.

Good News Translation
Whenever you move your camp, the Levites shall take the Tent down and set it up again at each new campsite. Anyone else who comes near the Tent shall be put to death.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
Whenever the tabernacle is to move, the Levites are to take it down, and whenever it is to stop at a campsite, the Levites are to set it up. Any unauthorized person who comes near it must be put to death."

International Standard Version
Whenever the tent is ready for travel, the descendants of Levi are to take it down. When it's time to encamp, the descendants of Levi are to set it up. Any unauthorized person who approaches it is to be executed.

NET Bible
Whenever the tabernacle is to move, the Levites must take it down, and whenever the tabernacle is to be reassembled, the Levites must set it up. Any unauthorized person who approaches it must be killed.

New Heart English Bible
When the tabernacle is to move, the Levites shall take it down; and when the tabernacle is to be set up, the Levites shall set it up. The unauthorized person who comes near shall be put to death.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
When the tent has to be moved, the Levites will take it down. When we camp, they will set it up. Anyone else who comes near the tent will be put to death.

JPS Tanakh 1917
And when the tabernacle setteth forward, the Levites shall take it down; and when the tabernacle is to be pitched, the Levites shall set it up; and the common man that draweth nigh shall be put to death.

New American Standard 1977
“So when the tabernacle is to set out, the Levites shall take it down; and when the tabernacle encamps, the Levites shall set it up. But the layman who comes near shall be put to death.

Jubilee Bible 2000
And when the tabernacle departs, the Levites shall take it down; and when the tabernacle is to be pitched, the Levites shall set it up; and the stranger that comes near shall be put to death.

King James 2000 Bible
And when the tabernacle moves forward, the Levites shall take it down: and when the tabernacle is to be encamped, the Levites shall set it up: and the stranger that comes near shall be put to death.

American King James Version
And when the tabernacle sets forward, the Levites shall take it down: and when the tabernacle is to be pitched, the Levites shall set it up: and the stranger that comes near shall be put to death.

American Standard Version
And when the tabernacle setteth forward, the Levites shall take it down; and when the tabernacle is to be pitched, the Levites shall set it up: and the stranger that cometh nigh shall be put to death.

Douay-Rheims Bible
When you are to go forward, the Levites shall take down the tabernacle: when you are to camp, they shall set it up. What stranger soever cometh to it, shall be slain.

Darby Bible Translation
and when the tabernacle setteth forward, the Levites shall take it down; and when the tabernacle encampeth, the Levites shall set it up; and the stranger that cometh near shall be put to death.

English Revised Version
And when the tabernacle setteth forward, the Levites shall take it down: and when the tabernacle is to be pitched, the Levites shall set it up: and the stranger that cometh nigh shall be put to death.

Webster's Bible Translation
And when the tabernacle moveth forward, the Levites shall take it down; and when the tabernacle is to be pitched, the Levites shall set it up: and the stranger that cometh nigh shall be put to death.

World English Bible
When the tabernacle is to move, the Levites shall take it down; and when the tabernacle is to be set up, the Levites shall set it up. The stranger who comes near shall be put to death.

Young's Literal Translation
'And in the journeying of the tabernacle, the Levites take it down, and in the encamping of the tabernacle, the Levites raise it up; and the stranger who is coming near is put to death.'
Study Bible
The Exemption of the Levites
50Instead, you are to appoint the Levites over the tabernacle of the testimony, all its furnishings, and everything in it. They shall carry the tabernacle and all its articles, care for it, and camp around it. 51Whenever the tabernacle is to move, the Levites are to take it down, and whenever it is to be pitched, the Levites are to set it up. Any outsider who goes near it must be put to death. 52The Israelites are to camp by their divisions, each man in his own camp and under his own family banner.…
Cross References
Numbers 3:10
So you shall appoint Aaron and his sons to carry out the duties of the priesthood; but any layman who approaches the tabernacle must be put to death."

Numbers 3:38
Moses, Aaron, and Aaron's sons were to camp to the east of the tabernacle, toward the sunrise, before the Tent of Meeting. They were to perform the duties of the sanctuary as a service on behalf of the Israelites; but any outsider who approached the sanctuary was to be put to death.

Numbers 4:1
Then the LORD said to Moses and Aaron,

Numbers 4:15
When Aaron and his sons have finished covering the holy objects and all their equipment, as soon as the camp is ready to move, the Kohathites shall come and do the carrying. But they must not touch the holy objects, or they will die. These are the transportation duties of the Kohathites regarding the Tent of Meeting.

Numbers 4:19
In order that they may live and not die when they come near the most holy things, do this for them: Aaron and his sons are to go in and assign each man his task and what he is to carry.

Numbers 16:40
just as the LORD commanded him through Moses. This was to be a reminder for the Israelites that no outsider who is not a descendant of Aaron should approach to offer incense before the LORD, lest he become like Korah and his followers.

Numbers 17:13
Anyone who comes near the tabernacle of the LORD will die. Are we all going to perish?"

Numbers 18:3
And they shall attend to your duties and all the duties of the Tent; but they must not come near to the furnishings of the sanctuary or the altar, or both they and you will die.

Numbers 18:7
But only you and your sons shall attend to your priesthood for everything concerning the altar, and for what is inside the veil, and you are to perform that service. I am giving you the work of the priesthood as a gift, but any outsider who comes near the sanctuary must be put to death."

Numbers 18:22
No longer may the Israelites come near the Tent of Meeting, or they will incur guilt and die.

Treasury of Scripture

And when the tabernacle sets forward, the Levites shall take it down: and when the tabernacle is to be pitched, the Levites shall set it up: and the stranger that comes near shall be put to death.

the Levites

Numbers 4:5-33 And when the camp sets forward, Aaron shall come, and his sons, and …

Numbers 10:11,17-21 And it came to pass on the twentieth day of the second month, in …

the stranger

Numbers 3:10,38 And you shall appoint Aaron and his sons, and they shall wait on …

Numbers 16:40 To be a memorial to the children of Israel, that no stranger, which …

Numbers 18:22 Neither must the children of Israel from now on come near the tabernacle …

Leviticus 22:10-13 There shall no stranger eat of the holy thing: a sojourner of the …

1 Samuel 6:19 And he smote the men of Bethshemesh, because they had looked into …

2 Samuel 6:7 And the anger of the LORD was kindled against Uzzah; and God smote …







(51) And the stranger that cometh nigh shall be put to death.--The word zar (stranger) here denotes one who was not of the tribe of Levi (Leviticus 22:10; Leviticus 22:12).

Verse 51. - The stranger. The word appears to mean here any unauthorized person (see Numbers 16:40). This is the first intimation given of the extreme and awful sanctity of the tabernacle, as the tent of the Divine Presence. It is, however, quite of a piece with the anxious warnings against intrusion upon the holy mount at the time of the giving of the law (Exodus 19:21, sq.). The great necessity for Israel was that he should understand and believe that the Lord before whom he had trembled at Sinai was really in the midst of him in all his travail and his danger. This could only be impressed upon his dull mind and hard heart by surrounding the presence chamber of Jehovah with awful sanctities and terrors. At a subsequent period, when the religious reverence here thrown around the tabernacle had been transferred to, or rather concentrated upon, the ark alone, Uzzah was actually smitten for breaking this law (1 Chronicles 13:10). The tumult raised against St. Paul (Acts 21:27, sq.) was justified by a supposed violation of the same. And when the tabernacle setteth forward,.... Or was about to set forward; that is, the congregation were about to journey, and take the tabernacle with them, as they always did, when and wherever they journeyed:

the Levites shall take it down; unpin it, take the boards and pillars out of their sockets, and the bars out of their places, and the whole into pieces, in order to be put into wagons prepared to carry them, of which mention is made in a following chapter:

and when the tabernacle is pitched, the Levites shall set it up; at whatsoever place the congregation encamped and took up their abode for any time: the tabernacle was pitched in the manner as tents are, when the Levites put the several parts together, laid the sockets, put in the boards and the bars, and also the pillars of the court and elsewhere, and hung the hangings upon them; and set the candlestick, tables, altars, ark, and all the vessels of the sanctuary in their proper places:

and the stranger that cometh nigh; to meddle with or touch the above things, to assist in taking down or setting up the tabernacle, or bearing any of the vessels of it: by a stranger is meant, not one of another nation, nor a proselyte, whether of the gate or of righteousness; but, as Aben Ezra interprets it, one that is a stranger from the sons of Levi, who is not of that tribe, even though an Israelite:

shall be put to death; either the sanhedrim or court of judicature shall condemn and put him to death, as the same writer observes; or he shall die by the hand of heaven, as Jarchi; that is, by the immediate hand of God, or with flaming fire from before the Lord, as the Targum of Jonathan; as Uzzah was smote, and died by the ark of God for touching it, 2 Samuel 5:6. 1:47-54 Care is here taken to distinguish the tribe of Levi, which, in the matter of the golden calf, had distinguished itself. Singular services shall be recompensed by singular honours. It was to the honour of the Levites, that to them was committed the care of the tabernacle and its treasures, in their camps and in their marches. It was for the honour of the holy things that none should see them, or touch them, but those who were called of God to the service. We all are unfit and unworthy to have fellowship with God, till called by his grace into the fellowship of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord; and so, being the spiritual seed of that great High Priest, we are made priests to our God. Great care must be taken to prevent sin, for preventing sin is preventing wrath. Being a holy tribe, they were not reckoned among other Israelites. They that minister about holy things, should neither entangle themselves, nor be entangled, in worldly affairs. And let every believer seek to do what the Lord has commanded.
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OT Law: Numbers 1:51 When the tabernacle is to move (Nu Num.) Christian Bible Study Resources, Dictionary, Concordance and Search Tools
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