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Numbers Chapter 6
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The Nazirite
6:1 God spoke to Moses, telling him to
6:2 speak to the Israelites and say to them:

[This is the law] when a man or woman expresses a nazirite vow to God.

6:3 He must separate himself completely from wine and wine-brandy. He may not even drink vinegar made from wine and wine-brandy. He shall not drink any grape beverage, and he shall not eat any grapes or raisins.
6:4 As long as he is a nazirite, he may not eat anything coming from the grape, from its seeds to its skin.
6:5 As long as he is under nazirite oath, no cutting instrument shall touch [the hair on] his head. Until he completes his term as a nazirite to God, the uncut hair that grows on his head is sacred.
6:6 As long as he is a nazirite to God, he may not have any contact with the dead.
6:7 He may not ritually defile himself even when his father, mother, brother or sister dies, since his God's nazirite crown is on his head.
6:8 As long as he is a nazirite, he is holy to God.
6:9 If a person dies in his presence suddenly, and renders his crowned head ritually unclean, then. when he purifies himself on the seventh day, he must shave off the hair on his head.
6:10 On the eighth day, he must bring two turtle doves or two young common doves to the priest to the Communion Tent entrance.
6:11 The priest shall prepare one as sin a sin offering and one as a burnt offering to atone for his inadvertent [defilement] by the dead. On that day, he shall resanctify his head.
6:12 He shall then begin counting his nazirite days anew to God, and he shall bring a yearling sheep as a guilt offering.
6:13 The following is the law of what the nazirite must do when the term of his nazirite vow is complete [and] of what he must bring to the Communion Tent entrance:
6:14 The offering that he must present shall be one unblemished yearling male sheep for a burnt offering, one unblemished yearling female sheep for a sin offering, one unblemished ram for a peace offering,
6:15 and a basket containing unleavened wheat loaves kneaded with oil and flat matzahs saturated with oil, along with the proper meal offerings and libations [for the animal sacrifices].
6:16 The priest shall come in before God and prepare [the nazirite's] sin offering and burnt offering.
6:17 He shall then [sacrifice] the ram as a peace offering to God, to go with the basket of unleavened bread. The priest shall also present the meal offering and libation.
6:18 [After the service] at the Communion Tent entrance, the nazirite shall shave off the crown of hair on his head. He shall take the hair from the nazirite crown on his head, and place it on the fire that is under the peace sacrifice.
6:19 After the nazirite has shaved, the priest shall take the cooked foreleg of the ram along with one unleavened loaf and one flat matzah, and place them on the nazirite's open hands.
6:20 The priest shall wave them with the motions prescribed for a wave offering before God. These are sanctified to [belong to] the priest, along with the animal's chest given as a wave offering, and the hind leg given as an elevated gift.

After [all] this, the nazirite may drink wine.

6:21 This is the [entire] law concerning the nazirite, who has a vow obligation to bring his nazirite sacrifice to God. This is in addition to anything else that he may wish to present to fulfill his vow, which must be brought above and beyond what the law requires for his nazirite vow.

The Priestly Blessing
6:22 God spoke to Moses, telling him to
6:23 speak to Aaron and his sons, saying:

This is how you must bless the Israelites. Say to them:

6:24 'May God bless you and keep watch over you.
6:25 'May God make His presence enlighten you and grant you grace.
6:26 'May God direct His providence toward you and grant you peace'.
6:27 [The priests] will thus link My name with the Israelites and I will bless them.


  This is unlike ordinary vows, since it involves a special protocol and ordinarily is for thirty days (Sifri; Yad, Nazir 3:1). The word nazir denotes that which is set apart and consecrated (Rashi; see notes on Genesis 49:26, Leviticus 25:5). It can also denote the 'crown' of hair that the nazirite wears (Ibn Ezra on Numbers 6:7; Ramban). According to Talmudic tradition, the main purpose of the nazirite vow is to be a discipline against sexual temptation (Sotah 2a; Rashi) and to avoid pride (Sotah 4b). However, it is also seen as a means of attaining spiritual gifts (cf. Judges 13:3; 1 Samuel 1:11), and possibly as an initiation to prophecy (cf. Amos 2:11). By taking a nazirite vow, a layperson also to some degree attains the status of a priest (Philo 1, Legum Allegoriae 249). Some say that it is an offering where one presents his hair to God (Josephus, Antiquities 4:4:4).

  (Nazir 4a, 34b; Rashi). But not intoxicants in general.

grape beverage
  (Septuagint; Menachem, quoted in Rashbam). Mishrah in Hebrew. It includes any liquid in which grapes have been soaked or steeped (Nazir 37a; Rashi; Sherashim).

cutting instrument
  (Saadia; Sotah 16a). Literally, 'razor'.

nazirite crown
  His uncut hair (Targum: Ibn Ezra).

seventh day
  See Numbers 19:12.

two turtle doves...
  See Leviticus 1:14.

sin offering...
  See Leviticus 5:7-10.

guilt offering
  Asham. See Leviticus 7:1-5

and of what
  (Rashbam). Or, 'he shall bring himself' (Rashi).

  See Leviticus 2:4. The offering was made of 2/3 ephah (3.2 gallons)of wheat meal (Menachoth 78a; Yad, Nazir 8:1). It was mixed with 1/4 log (2 1/2 oz) of olive oil (Ibid.). It consisted of twenty loaves, ten of each kind.

for the animal sacrifices
  See Numbers 15:1-11.

sin offering and burnt offering
  In that order (Yad, Nazir 8:2).

to go with...
  (Saadia; Septuagint). Or, 'to sanctify' (Rashi).

After the service
  (Sifri; Targum Yonathan; Rashi). Or, 'While the Communion Tent entrance [is open]' (Nazir 45a; Yad, Nazir 8:3). There was a special chamber in the Temple where Nazirites would shave (Ibid.).

place it on the fire
  After soaking it in the juice from the cooked sacrifice (Nazir 45b; Yad, Nazir 8:2).

motions prescribed
  See Exodus 29:24.

along with...
  See Exodus 29:27, Leviticus 7:34.

  (Yad, Nazir 8:4).

  See note on Leviticus 13:59.

vow obligation

This is in addition...
  That is, he may stipulate to bring more (Rashi; Rashbam).

God spoke...
  This was also on the day the Tabernacle was erected (Ramban). See note on Numbers 5:1.

  (cf. Targum). Literally 'face'.

  (Sifri; Rashi). Or, 'Be kind to you' (Targum; Septuagint).

  (Saadia; Rashbam; Ibn Ezra; Moreh Nevukhim 1:37). Or, 'bestow favor' (Rashi).

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