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Numbers chapter 4

New International Version

1 The LORD said to Moses and Aaron: 2 Take a census of the Kohathite branch of the Levites by their clans and families. 3 Count all the men from thirty to fifty years of age who come to serve in the work at the tent of meeting.
4 This is the work of the Kohathites at the tent of meeting: the care of the most holy things. 5 When the camp is to move, Aaron and his sons are to go in and take down the shielding curtain and put it over the ark of the covenant law. 6 Then they are to cover the curtain with a durable leather, spread a cloth of solid blue over that and put the poles in place.
7 Over the table of the Presence they are to spread a blue cloth and put on it the plates, dishes and bowls, and the jars for drink offerings; the bread that is continually there is to remain on it. 8 They are to spread a scarlet cloth over them, cover that with the durable leather and put the poles in place.
9 They are to take a blue cloth and cover the lampstand that is for light, together with its lamps, its wick trimmers and trays, and all its jars for the olive oil used to supply it. 10 Then they are to wrap it and all its accessories in a covering of the durable leather and put it on a carrying frame.
11 Over the gold altar they are to spread a blue cloth and cover that with the durable leather and put the poles in place.
12 They are to take all the articles used for ministering in the sanctuary, wrap them in a blue cloth, cover that with the durable leather and put them on a carrying frame.
13 They are to remove the ashes from the bronze altar and spread a purple cloth over it. 14 Then they are to place on it all the utensils used for ministering at the altar, including the firepans, meat forks, shovels and sprinkling bowls. Over it they are to spread a covering of the durable leather and put the poles in place.
15 After Aaron and his sons have finished covering the holy furnishings and all the holy articles, and when the camp is ready to move, only then are the Kohathites to come and do the carrying. But they must not touch the holy things or they will die. The Kohathites are to carry those things that are in the Tent of Meeting.
16 Eleazar son of Aaron, the priest, is to have charge of the oil for the light, the fragrant incense, the regular grain offering and the anointing oil. He is to be in charge of the entire tabernacle and everything in it, including its holy furnishings and articles."
17 The LORD said to Moses and Aaron, 18 See that the Kohathite tribal clans are not destroyed from among the Levites. 19 So 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 into the sanctuary and assign to each man his work and what he is to carry. 20 But the Kohathites must not go in to look at the holy things, even for a moment, or they will die.'
21 The LORD said to Moses, 22 Take a census also of the Gershonites by their families and clans. 23 Count all the men from thirty to fifty years of age who come to serve in the work at the tent of meeting.
24 This is the service of the Gershonite clans in their carrying and their other work: 25 They are to carry the curtains of the tabernacle, that is, the tent of meeting, its covering and its outer covering of durable leather, the curtains for the entrance to the tent of meeting, 26 the curtains of the courtyard surrounding the tabernacle and altar, the curtain for the entrance to the courtyard, the ropes and all the equipment used in the service of the tent. The Gershonites are to do all that needs to be done with these things. 27 All their service, whether carrying or doing other work, is to be done under the direction of Aaron and his sons. You shall assign to them as their responsibility all they are to carry. 28 This is the service of the Gershonite clans at the tent of meeting. Their duties are to be under the direction of Ithamar son of Aaron, the priest.
29 Count the Merarites by their clans and families. 30 Count all the men from thirty to fifty years of age who come to serve in the work at the tent of meeting. 31 As part of all their service at the tent, they are to carry the frames of the tabernacle, its crossbars, posts and bases, 32 as well as the posts of the surrounding courtyard with their bases, tent pegs, ropes, all their equipment and everything related to their use. Assign to each man the specific things he is to carry. 33 This is the service of the Merarite clans as they work at the tent of meeting under the direction of Ithamar son of Aaron, the priest.'
34 Moses, Aaron and the leaders of the community counted the Kohathites by their clans and families. 35 All the men from thirty to fifty years of age who came to serve in the work at the tent of meeting, 36 counted by clans, were 2,750. 37 This was the total of all those in the Kohathite clans who served at the tent of meeting. Moses and Aaron counted them according to the LORD's command through Moses.
38 The Gershonites were counted by their clans and families. 39 All the men from thirty to fifty years of age who came to serve in the work at the tent of meeting, 40 counted by their clans and families, were 2,630. 41 This was the total of those in the Gershonite clans who served at the tent of meeting. Moses and Aaron counted them according to the LORD's command.
42 The Merarites were counted by their clans and families. 43 All the men from thirty to fifty years of age who came to serve in the work at the tent of meeting, 44 counted by their clans, were 3,200. 45 This was the total of those in the Merarite clans. Moses and Aaron counted them according to the LORD's command through Moses.
46 So Moses, Aaron and the leaders of Israel counted all the Levites by their clans and families. 47 All the men from thirty to fifty years of age who came to do the work of serving and carrying the tent of meeting 48 numbered 8,580.
49 At the LORD's command through Moses, each was assigned his work and told what to carry. Thus they were counted, as the LORD commanded Moses.
English Standard Version

1 The LORD spoke to Moses and Aaron, saying, 2 “Take a census of the sons of Kohath from among the sons of Levi, by their clans and their fathers’ houses, 3 from thirty years old up to fifty years old, all who can come on duty, to do the work in the tent of meeting. 4 This is the service of the sons of Kohath in the tent of meeting: the most holy things. 5 When the camp is to set out, Aaron and his sons shall go in and take down the veil of the screen and cover the ark of the testimony with it. 6 Then they shall put on it a covering of goatskin and spread on top of that a cloth all of blue, and shall put in its poles. 7 And over the table of the bread of the Presence they shall spread a cloth of blue and put on it the plates, the dishes for incense, the bowls, and the flagons for the drink offering; the regular showbread also shall be on it. 8 Then they shall spread over them a cloth of scarlet and cover the same with a covering of goatskin, and shall put in its poles. 9 And they shall take a cloth of blue and cover the lampstand for the light, with its lamps, its tongs, its trays, and all the vessels for oil with which it is supplied. 10 And they shall put it with all its utensils in a covering of goatskin and put it on the carrying frame. 11 And over the golden altar they shall spread a cloth of blue and cover it with a covering of goatskin, and shall put in its poles. 12 And they shall take all the vessels of the service that are used in the sanctuary and put them in a cloth of blue and cover them with a covering of goatskin and put them on the carrying frame. 13 And they shall take away the ashes from the altar and spread a purple cloth over it. 14 And they shall put on it all the utensils of the altar, which are used for the service there, the fire pans, the forks, the shovels, and the basins, all the utensils of the altar; and they shall spread on it a covering of goatskin, and shall put in its poles. 15 And when Aaron and his sons have finished covering the sanctuary and all the furnishings of the sanctuary, as the camp sets out, after that the sons of Kohath shall come to carry these, but they must not touch the holy things, lest they die. These are the things of the tent of meeting that the sons of Kohath are to carry.
16 “And Eleazar the son of Aaron the priest shall have charge of the oil for the light, the fragrant incense, the regular grain offering, and the anointing oil, with the oversight of the whole tabernacle and all that is in it, of the sanctuary and its vessels.”
17 The LORD spoke to Moses and Aaron, saying, 18 “Let not the tribe of the clans of the Kohathites be destroyed from among the Levites, 19 but deal thus with them, that they may live and not die when they come near to the most holy things: Aaron and his sons shall go in and appoint them each to his task and to his burden, 20 but they shall not go in to look on the holy things even for a moment, lest they die.”
21 The LORD spoke to Moses, saying, 22 “Take a census of the sons of Gershon also, by their fathers’ houses and by their clans. 23 From thirty years old up to fifty years old, you shall list them, all who can come to do duty, to do service in the tent of meeting. 24 This is the service of the clans of the Gershonites, in serving and bearing burdens: 25 they shall carry the curtains of the tabernacle and the tent of meeting with its covering and the covering of goatskin that is on top of it and the screen for the entrance of the tent of meeting 26 and the hangings of the court and the screen for the entrance of the gate of the court that is around the tabernacle and the altar, and their cords and all the equipment for their service. And they shall do all that needs to be done with regard to them. 27 All the service of the sons of the Gershonites shall be at the command of Aaron and his sons, in all that they are to carry and in all that they have to do. And you shall assign to their charge all that they are to carry. 28 This is the service of the clans of the sons of the Gershonites in the tent of meeting, and their guard duty is to be under the direction of Ithamar the son of Aaron the priest.
29 “As for the sons of Merari, you shall list them by their clans and their fathers’ houses. 30 From thirty years old up to fifty years old, you shall list them, everyone who can come on duty, to do the service of the tent of meeting. 31 And this is what they are charged to carry, as the whole of their service in the tent of meeting: the frames of the tabernacle, with its bars, pillars, and bases, 32 and the pillars around the court with their bases, pegs, and cords, with all their equipment and all their accessories. And you shall list by name the objects that they are required to carry. 33 This is the service of the clans of the sons of Merari, the whole of their service in the tent of meeting, under the direction of Ithamar the son of Aaron the priest.”
34 And Moses and Aaron and the chiefs of the congregation listed the sons of the Kohathites, by their clans and their fathers’ houses, 35 from thirty years old up to fifty years old, everyone who could come on duty, for service in the tent of meeting; 36 and those listed by clans were 2,750. 37 This was the list of the clans of the Kohathites, all who served in the tent of meeting, whom Moses and Aaron listed according to the commandment of the LORD by Moses.
38 Those listed of the sons of Gershon, by their clans and their fathers’ houses, 39 from thirty years old up to fifty years old, everyone who could come on duty for service in the tent of meeting— 40 those listed by their clans and their fathers’ houses were 2,630. 41 This was the list of the clans of the sons of Gershon, all who served in the tent of meeting, whom Moses and Aaron listed according to the commandment of the LORD.
42 Those listed of the clans of the sons of Merari, by their clans and their fathers’ houses, 43 from thirty years old up to fifty years old, everyone who could come on duty, for service in the tent of meeting— 44 those listed by clans were 3,200. 45 This was the list of the clans of the sons of Merari, whom Moses and Aaron listed according to the commandment of the LORD by Moses.
46 All those who were listed of the Levites, whom Moses and Aaron and the chiefs of Israel listed, by their clans and their fathers’ houses, 47 from thirty years old up to fifty years old, everyone who could come to do the service of ministry and the service of bearing burdens in the tent of meeting, 48 those listed were 8,580. 49 According to the commandment of the LORD through Moses they were listed, each one with his task of serving or carrying. Thus they were listed by him, as the LORD commanded Moses.
King James Version

1 And the LORD spake unto Moses and unto Aaron, saying, 2 Take the sum of the sons of Kohath from among the sons of Levi, after their families, by the house of their fathers, 3 From thirty years old and upward even until fifty years old, all that enter into the host, to do the work in the tabernacle of the congregation. 4 This shall be the service of the sons of Kohath in the tabernacle of the congregation, about the most holy things: 5 And when the camp setteth forward, Aaron shall come, and his sons, and they shall take down the covering vail, and cover the ark of testimony with it: 6 And shall put thereon the covering of badgers' skins, and shall spread over it a cloth wholly of blue, and shall put in the staves thereof. 7 And upon the table of shewbread they shall spread a cloth of blue, and put thereon the dishes, and the spoons, and the bowls, and covers to cover withal: and the continual bread shall be thereon: 8 And they shall spread upon them a cloth of scarlet, and cover the same with a covering of badgers' skins, and shall put in the staves thereof. 9 And they shall take a cloth of blue, and cover the candlestick of the light, and his lamps, and his tongs, and his snuffdishes, and all the oil vessels thereof, wherewith they minister unto it: 10 And they shall put it and all the vessels thereof within a covering of badgers' skins, and shall put it upon a bar. 11 And upon the golden altar they shall spread a cloth of blue, and cover it with a covering of badgers' skins, and shall put to the staves thereof: 12 And they shall take all the instruments of ministry, wherewith they minister in the sanctuary, and put them in a cloth of blue, and cover them with a covering of badgers' skins, and shall put them on a bar: 13 And they shall take away the ashes from the altar, and spread a purple cloth thereon: 14 And they shall put upon it all the vessels thereof, wherewith they minister about it, even the censers, the fleshhooks, and the shovels, and the basons, all the vessels of the altar; and they shall spread upon it a covering of badgers' skins, and put to the staves of it. 15 And when Aaron and his sons have made an end of covering the sanctuary, and all the vessels of the sanctuary, as the camp is to set forward; after that, the sons of Kohath shall come to bear it: but they shall not touch any holy thing, lest they die. These things are the burden of the sons of Kohath in the tabernacle of the congregation. 16 And to the office of Eleazar the son of Aaron the priest pertaineth the oil for the light, and the sweet incense, and the daily meat offering, and the anointing oil, and the oversight of all the tabernacle, and of all that therein is, in the sanctuary, and in the vessels thereof. 17 And the LORD spake unto Moses and unto Aaron, saying, 18 Cut ye not off the tribe of the families of the Kohathites from among the Levites: 19 But thus do unto them, that they may live, and not die, when they approach unto the most holy things: Aaron and his sons shall go in, and appoint them every one to his service and to his burden: 20 But they shall not go in to see when the holy things are covered, lest they die.
21 And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying, 22 Take also the sum of the sons of Gershon, throughout the houses of their fathers, by their families; 23 From thirty years old and upward until fifty years old shalt thou number them; all that enter in to perform the service, to do the work in the tabernacle of the congregation. 24 This is the service of the families of the Gershonites, to serve, and for burdens: 25 And they shall bear the curtains of the tabernacle, and the tabernacle of the congregation, his covering, and the covering of the badgers' skins that is above upon it, and the hanging for the door of the tabernacle of the congregation, 26 And the hangings of the court, and the hanging for the door of the gate of the court, which is by the tabernacle and by the altar round about, and their cords, and all the instruments of their service, and all that is made for them: so shall they serve. 27 At the appointment of Aaron and his sons shall be all the service of the sons of the Gershonites, in all their burdens, and in all their service: and ye shall appoint unto them in charge all their burdens. 28 This is the service of the families of the sons of Gershon in the tabernacle of the congregation: and their charge shall be under the hand of Ithamar the son of Aaron the priest. 29 As for the sons of Merari, thou shalt number them after their families, by the house of their fathers; 30 From thirty years old and upward even unto fifty years old shalt thou number them, every one that entereth into the service, to do the work of the tabernacle of the congregation. 31 And this is the charge of their burden, according to all their service in the tabernacle of the congregation; the boards of the tabernacle, and the bars thereof, and the pillars thereof, and sockets thereof, 32 And the pillars of the court round about, and their sockets, and their pins, and their cords, with all their instruments, and with all their service: and by name ye shall reckon the instruments of the charge of their burden. 33 This is the service of the families of the sons of Merari, according to all their service, in the tabernacle of the congregation, under the hand of Ithamar the son of Aaron the priest.
34 And Moses and Aaron and the chief of the congregation numbered the sons of the Kohathites after their families, and after the house of their fathers, 35 From thirty years old and upward even unto fifty years old, every one that entereth into the service, for the work in the tabernacle of the congregation: 36 And those that were numbered of them by their families were two thousand seven hundred and fifty. 37 These were they that were numbered of the families of the Kohathites, all that might do service in the tabernacle of the congregation, which Moses and Aaron did number according to the commandment of the LORD by the hand of Moses. 38 And those that were numbered of the sons of Gershon, throughout their families, and by the house of their fathers, 39 From thirty years old and upward even unto fifty years old, every one that entereth into the service, for the work in the tabernacle of the congregation, 40 Even those that were numbered of them, throughout their families, by the house of their fathers, were two thousand and six hundred and thirty. 41 These are they that were numbered of the families of the sons of Gershon, of all that might do service in the tabernacle of the congregation, whom Moses and Aaron did number according to the commandment of the LORD. 42 And those that were numbered of the families of the sons of Merari, throughout their families, by the house of their fathers, 43 From thirty years old and upward even unto fifty years old, every one that entereth into the service, for the work in the tabernacle of the congregation, 44 Even those that were numbered of them after their families, were three thousand and two hundred. 45 These be those that were numbered of the families of the sons of Merari, whom Moses and Aaron numbered according to the word of the LORD by the hand of Moses. 46 All those that were numbered of the Levites, whom Moses and Aaron and the chief of Israel numbered, after their families, and after the house of their fathers, 47 From thirty years old and upward even unto fifty years old, every one that came to do the service of the ministry, and the service of the burden in the tabernacle of the congregation, 48 Even those that were numbered of them, were eight thousand and five hundred and fourscore. 49 According to the commandment of the LORD they were numbered by the hand of Moses, every one according to his service, and according to his burden: thus were they numbered of him, as the LORD commanded Moses.
New American Standard Bible

1 Then the LORD spoke to Moses and to Aaron, saying, 2 'Take a census of the descendants of Kohath from among the sons of Levi, by their families, by their fathers’ households, 3 from thirty years old and upward, even to fifty years old, everyone who can enter the service of ministry to do work in the tent of meeting. 4 This is the work of the descendants of Kohath in the tent of meeting, concerning the most holy things.
5 'When the camp sets out, Aaron and his sons shall go in and take down the veil of the curtain, and cover the ark of the testimony with it; 6 and they shall place a covering of fine leather on it, and spread over it a cloth of pure violet, and insert its carrying poles. 7 Over the table of the bread of the Presence they shall also spread a cloth of violet and put on it the dishes, the pans, the sacrificial bowls, and the jugs for the drink offering; and the continual bread shall be on it. 8 And they shall spread over them a cloth of scarlet material, and cover the same with a covering of fine leather, and they shall insert its carrying poles. 9 Then they shall take a violet cloth and cover the lampstand for the light, along with its lamps, its tongs, its trays, and all its oil containers, by which they attend to it; 10 and they shall put it and all its utensils in a covering of fine leather, and put it on the carrying bars. 11 Over the golden altar they shall spread a violet cloth, and cover it with a covering of fine leather, and they shall insert its carrying poles; 12 and they shall take all the utensils of service, with which they serve in the sanctuary, and put them in a violet cloth and cover them with a covering of fine leather, and put them on the carrying bars. 13 Then they shall clean away the ashes from the altar, and spread a purple cloth over it. 14 They shall also put on it all its utensils by which they serve in connection with it: the firepans, the forks, shovels, and the basins, all the utensils of the altar; and they shall spread a cover of fine leather over it and insert its carrying poles. 15 When Aaron and his sons have finished covering the holy objects and all the furnishings of the sanctuary, when the camp is to set out, after that the sons of Kohath shall come to carry them by the poles, so that they will not touch the holy objects and die. These are the things in the tent of meeting that the sons of Kohath are to carry.
16 'Now the responsibility of Eleazar the son of Aaron the priest is the oil for the light, the fragrant incense, the continual grain offering, and the anointing oil—the responsibility of all the tabernacle and everything that is in it, with the sanctuary and its furnishings.'
17 Then the LORD spoke to Moses and to Aaron, saying, 18 'Do not let the tribe of the families of the Kohathites be eliminated from among the Levites. 19 Rather, do this for them so that they will live and not die when they approach the most holy objects: Aaron and his sons shall go in and assign each of them to his work and to his load; 20 but they shall not come in to see the holy objects even for a moment, or they will die.'
21 Then the LORD spoke to Moses, saying, 22 'Take a census of the sons of Gershon also, by their fathers’ households, by their families; 23 from thirty years old and upward to fifty years old you shall count them: all who can enter to perform service, to do the work in the tent of meeting. 24 This is the service of the families of the Gershonites, in serving and in carrying: 25 they shall carry the curtains of the tabernacle and the tent of meeting with its covering and the covering of fine leather that is on top of it, and the curtain for the entrance of the tent of meeting, 26 and the curtains of the courtyard, the curtain for the entrance of the gate of the courtyard that is around the tabernacle and the altar, and their ropes and all the equipment for their service; and everything that is to be done by them, they shall perform. 27 All the service of the sons of the Gershonites, that is, all their loads and all their work, shall be performed at the command of Aaron and his sons; and you shall assign to them as a duty all their loads. 28 This is the service of the families of the sons of the Gershonites in the tent of meeting; and their duties shall be under the direction of Ithamar the son of Aaron the priest.
29 'As for the sons of Merari, you shall count them by their families, by their fathers’ households; 30 from thirty years old and upward, even to fifty years old, you shall count them, everyone who can enter the service to do the work of the tent of meeting. 31 Now this is the duty of their loads, for all their service in the tent of meeting: the boards of the tabernacle, its bars, its pillars, and its bases, 32 and the pillars around the courtyard and their bases, their pegs, and their ropes, with all their equipment and with all their service; and you shall assign by names of the men the items that each is to carry. 33 This is the service of the families of the sons of Merari, according to all their service in the tent of meeting, under the direction of Ithamar the son of Aaron the priest.'
34 So Moses, Aaron, and the leaders of the congregation counted the sons of the Kohathites by their families and by their fathers’ households, 35 from thirty years old and upward even to fifty years old, everyone who could enter the service for work in the tent of meeting. 36 Their numbered men by their families were 2,750. 37 These were the numbered men of the Kohathite families, everyone who was serving in the tent of meeting, whom Moses and Aaron counted according to the commandment of the LORD through Moses.
38 And the numbered men of the sons of Gershon by their families and by their fathers’ households, 39 from thirty years old and upward even to fifty years old, everyone who could enter the service for work in the tent of meeting— 40 their numbered men by their families, by their fathers’ households, were 2,630. 41 These were the numbered men of the families of the sons of Gershon, everyone who was serving in the tent of meeting, whom Moses and Aaron counted according to the commandment of the LORD.
42 And the numbered men of the families of the sons of Merari by their families, by their fathers’ households, 43 from thirty years old and upward even to fifty years old, everyone who could enter the service for work in the tent of meeting— 44 their numbered men by their families were 3,200. 45 These were the numbered men of the families of the sons of Merari, whom Moses and Aaron counted according to the commandment of the LORD through Moses.
46 All the numbered men of the Levites, whom Moses, Aaron, and the leaders of Israel counted, by their families and by their fathers’ households, 47 from thirty years old and upward even to fifty years old, everyone who could enter to do the work of service and the work of carrying in the tent of meeting— 48 their numbered men were 8,580. 49 According to the commandment of the LORD through Moses, they were counted, everyone by his serving or carrying; so these were his numbered men, just as the LORD had commanded Moses.
New Living Translation

1 Then the LORD said to Moses and Aaron, 2 'Record the names of the members of the clans and families of the Kohathite division of the tribe of Levi. 3 List all the men between the ages of thirty and fifty who are eligible to serve in the Tabernacle.
4 'The duties of the Kohathites at the Tabernacle will relate to the most sacred objects. 5 When the camp moves, Aaron and his sons must enter the Tabernacle first to take down the inner curtain and cover the Ark of the Covenant with it. 6 Then they must cover the inner curtain with fine goatskin leather and spread over that a single piece of blue cloth. Finally, they must put the carrying poles of the Ark in place.
7 'Next they must spread a blue cloth over the table where the Bread of the Presence is displayed, and on the cloth they will place the bowls, pans, jars, pitchers, and the special bread. 8 They must spread a scarlet cloth over all of this, and finally a covering of fine goatskin leather on top of the scarlet cloth. Then they must insert the carrying poles into the table.
9 'Next they must cover the lampstand with a blue cloth, along with its lamps, lamp snuffers, trays, and special jars of olive oil. 10 Then they must cover the lampstand and its accessories with fine goatskin leather and place the bundle on a carrying frame.
11 'Next they must spread a blue cloth over the gold incense altar and cover this cloth with fine goatskin leather. Then they must attach the carrying poles to the altar. 12 They must take all the remaining furnishings of the sanctuary and wrap them in a blue cloth, cover them with fine goatskin leather, and place them on the carrying frame.
13 'They must remove the ashes from the altar for sacrifices and cover the altar with a purple cloth. 14 All the altar utensils--the firepans, meat forks, shovels, basins, and all the containers--must be placed on the cloth, and a covering of fine goatskin leather must be spread over them. Finally, they must put the carrying poles in place. 15 The camp will be ready to move when Aaron and his sons have finished covering the sanctuary and all the sacred articles. The Kohathites will come and carry these things to the next destination. But they must not touch the sacred objects, or they will die. So these are the things from the Tabernacle that the Kohathites must carry.
16 'Eleazar son of Aaron the priest will be responsible for the oil of the lampstand, the fragrant incense, the daily grain offering, and the anointing oil. In fact, Eleazar will be responsible for the entire Tabernacle and everything in it, including the sanctuary and its furnishings.'
17 Then the LORD said to Moses and Aaron, 18 'Do not let the Kohathite clans be destroyed from among the Levites! 19 This is what you must do so they will live and not die when they approach the most sacred objects. Aaron and his sons must always go in with them and assign a specific duty or load to each person. 20 The Kohathites must never enter the sanctuary to look at the sacred objects for even a moment, or they will die.'
21 And the LORD said to Moses, 22 'Record the names of the members of the clans and families of the Gershonite division of the tribe of Levi. 23 List all the men between the ages of thirty and fifty who are eligible to serve in the Tabernacle.
24 'These Gershonite clans will be responsible for general service and carrying loads. 25 They must carry the curtains of the Tabernacle, the Tabernacle itself with its coverings, the outer covering of fine goatskin leather, and the curtain for the Tabernacle entrance. 26 They are also to carry the curtains for the courtyard walls that surround the Tabernacle and altar, the curtain across the courtyard entrance, the ropes, and all the equipment related to their use. The Gershonites are responsible for all these items. 27 Aaron and his sons will direct the Gershonites regarding all their duties, whether it involves moving the equipment or doing other work. They must assign the Gershonites responsibility for the loads they are to carry. 28 So these are the duties assigned to the Gershonite clans at the Tabernacle. They will be directly responsible to Ithamar son of Aaron the priest.
29 'Now record the names of the members of the clans and families of the Merarite division of the tribe of Levi. 30 List all the men between the ages of thirty and fifty who are eligible to serve in the Tabernacle.
31 'Their only duty at the Tabernacle will be to carry loads. They will carry the frames of the Tabernacle, the crossbars, the posts, and the bases; 32 also the posts for the courtyard walls with their bases, pegs, and ropes; and all the accessories and everything else related to their use. Assign the various loads to each man by name. 33 So these are the duties of the Merarite clans at the Tabernacle. They are directly responsible to Ithamar son of Aaron the priest.'
34 So Moses, Aaron, and the other leaders of the community listed the members of the Kohathite division by their clans and families. 35 The list included all the men between thirty and fifty years of age who were eligible for service in the Tabernacle, 36 and the total number came to 2,750. 37 So this was the total of all those from the Kohathite clans who were eligible to serve at the Tabernacle. Moses and Aaron listed them, just as the LORD had commanded through Moses.
38 The Gershonite division was also listed by its clans and families. 39 The list included all the men between thirty and fifty years of age who were eligible for service in the Tabernacle, 40 and the total number came to 2,630. 41 So this was the total of all those from the Gershonite clans who were eligible to serve at the Tabernacle. Moses and Aaron listed them, just as the LORD had commanded.
42 The Merarite division was also listed by its clans and families. 43 The list included all the men between thirty and fifty years of age who were eligible for service in the Tabernacle, 44 and the total number came to 3,200. 45 So this was the total of all those from the Merarite clans who were eligible for service. Moses and Aaron listed them, just as the LORD had commanded through Moses.
46 So Moses, Aaron, and the leaders of Israel listed all the Levites by their clans and families. 47 All the men between thirty and fifty years of age who were eligible for service in the Tabernacle and for its transportation 48 numbered 8,580.
49 When their names were recorded, as the LORD had commanded through Moses, each man was assigned his task and told what to carry. And so the registration was completed, just as the LORD had commanded Moses.
Christian Standard Bible

1 The LORD spoke to Moses and Aaron: 2 "Among the Levites, take a census of the Kohathites by their clans and their ancestral families, 3 men from thirty years old to fifty years old--everyone who is qualified to do work at the tent of meeting.
4 "The service of the Kohathites at the tent of meeting concerns the most holy objects. 5 Whenever the camp is about to move on, Aaron and his sons are to go in, take down the screening curtain, and cover the ark of the testimony with it. 6 They are to place over this a covering made of fine leather, spread a solid blue cloth on top, and insert its poles.
7 "They are to spread a blue cloth over the table of the Presence and place the plates and cups on it, as well as the bowls and pitchers for the drink offering. The regular bread offering is to be on it. 8 They are to spread a scarlet cloth over them, cover them with a covering made of fine leather, and insert the poles in the table.
9 "They are to take a blue cloth and cover the lampstand used for light, with its lamps, snuffers, and firepans, as well as its jars of oil by which they service it. 10 Then they are to place it with all its utensils inside a covering made of fine leather and put them on the carrying frame.
11 "They are to spread a blue cloth over the gold altar, cover it with a covering made of fine leather, and insert its poles. 12 They are to take all the serving utensils they use in the sanctuary, place them in a blue cloth, cover them with a covering made of fine leather, and put them on a carrying frame.
13 "They are to remove the ashes from the bronze altar, spread a purple cloth over it, 14 and place all the equipment on it that they use in serving: the firepans, meat forks, shovels, and basins--all the equipment of the altar. They are to spread a covering made of fine leather over it and insert its poles.
15 "Aaron and his sons are to finish covering the holy objects and all their equipment whenever the camp is to move on. The Kohathites will come and carry them, but they are not to touch the holy objects or they will die. These are the transportation duties of the Kohathites regarding the tent of meeting.
16 "Eleazar, son of Aaron the priest, has oversight of the lamp oil, the fragrant incense, the daily grain offering, and the anointing oil. He has oversight of the entire tabernacle and everything in it, the holy objects and their utensils."
17 Then the LORD spoke to Moses and Aaron: 18 "Do not allow the Kohathite tribal clans to be wiped out from the Levites. 19 Do this for them so that they may live and not die when they come near the most holy objects: Aaron and his sons are to go in and assign each man his task and transportation duty. 20 The Kohathites are not to go in and look at the holy objects as they are covered or they will die."
21 The LORD spoke to Moses: 22 "Take a census of the Gershonites also, by their ancestral families and their clans. 23 Register men from thirty years old to fifty years old, everyone who is qualified to perform service, to do work at the tent of meeting. 24 This is the service of the Gershonite clans regarding work and transportation duties: 25 They are to transport the tabernacle curtains, the tent of meeting with its covering and the covering made of fine leather on top of it, the screen for the entrance to the tent of meeting, 26 the hangings of the courtyard, the screen for the entrance at the gate of the courtyard that surrounds the tabernacle and the altar, along with their ropes and all the equipment for their service. They will carry out everything that needs to be done with these items.
27 "All the service of the Gershonites, all their transportation duties and all their other work, is to be done at the command of Aaron and his sons; you are to assign to them all that they are responsible to carry. 28 This is the service of the Gershonite clans at the tent of meeting, and their duties will be under the direction of Ithamar son of Aaron the priest.
29 "As for the Merarites, you are to register them by their clans and their ancestral families. 30 Register men from thirty years old to fifty years old, everyone who is qualified to do the work of the tent of meeting. 31 This is what they are responsible to carry as the whole of their service at the tent of meeting: the supports of the tabernacle, with its crossbars, pillars, and bases, 32 the posts of the surrounding courtyard with their bases, tent pegs, and ropes, including all their equipment and all the work related to them. You are to assign by name the items that they are responsible to carry. 33 This is the service of the Merarite clans regarding all their work at the tent of meeting, under the direction of Ithamar son of Aaron the priest."
34 So Moses, Aaron, and the leaders of the community registered the Kohathites by their clans and their ancestral families, 35 men from thirty years old to fifty years old, everyone who was qualified for work at the tent of meeting. 36 The men registered by their clans numbered 2,750. 37 These were the registered men of the Kohathite clans, everyone who could serve at the tent of meeting. Moses and Aaron registered them at the LORD's command through Moses.
38 The Gershonites were registered by their clans and their ancestral families, 39 men from thirty years old to fifty years old, everyone who was qualified for work at the tent of meeting. 40 The men registered by their clans and their ancestral families numbered 2,630. 41 These were the registered men of the Gershonite clans. At the LORD's command Moses and Aaron registered everyone who could serve at the tent of meeting.
42 The men of the Merarite clans were registered by their clans and their ancestral families, 43 those from thirty years old to fifty years old, everyone who was qualified for work at the tent of meeting. 44 The men registered by their clans numbered 3,200. 45 These were the registered men of the Merarite clans; Moses and Aaron registered them at the LORD's command through Moses.
46 Moses, Aaron, and the leaders of Israel registered all the Levites by their clans and their ancestral families, 47 from thirty years old to fifty years old, everyone who was qualified to do the work of serving at the tent of meeting and transporting it. 48 Their registered men numbered 8,580. 49 At the LORD's command they were registered under the direction of Moses, each one according to his work and transportation duty, and his assignment was as the LORD commanded Moses.

What does Numbers chapter 4 mean?

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