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Leviticus 11:39-47

Context
Edible Land Quadrupeds

11:39 “‘Now if an animal 1  that you may eat dies, 2  whoever touches its carcass will be unclean until the evening. 11:40 One who eats from its carcass must wash his clothes and be unclean until the evening, and whoever carries its carcass must wash his clothes and be unclean until the evening. 11:41 Every swarming thing that swarms on the land is detestable; it must not be eaten. 11:42 You must not eat anything that crawls 3  on its belly or anything that walks on all fours or on any number of legs 4  of all the swarming things that swarm on the land, because they are detestable. 11:43 Do not make yourselves detestable by any of the swarming things. 5  You must not defile yourselves by them and become unclean by them, 11:44 for I am the Lord your God and you are to sanctify yourselves and be holy because I am holy. You must not defile yourselves by any of the swarming things that creep on the ground, 11:45 for I am the Lord who brought you up from the land of Egypt to be your God, 6  and you are to be holy because I am holy. 11:46 This is the law 7  of the land animals, the birds, all the living creatures that move in the water, and all the creatures 8  that swarm on the land, 11:47 to distinguish between the unclean and the clean, between the living creatures that may be eaten and the living creatures that must not be eaten.’”

1 tn This word for “animal” refers to land animal quadrupeds, not just any beast that dwells on the land (cf. 11:2).

2 tn Heb “which is food for you” or “which is for you to eat.”

3 tn Heb “goes” (KJV, ASV “goeth”); NIV “moves about”; NLT “slither along.” The same Hebrew term is translated “walks” in the following clause.

4 tn Heb “until all multiplying of legs.”

5 tn Heb “by any of the swarming things that swarm.”

6 tn Heb “to be to you for a God.”

7 sn The Hebrew term translated “law” (תוֹרָה, torah) introduces here a summary or colophon for all of Lev 11. Similar summaries are found in Lev 7:37-38; 13:59; 14:54-57; and 15:32-33.

8 tn Heb “for all the creatures.”



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