Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on email

Read Numbers 6

The Nazirite

The Lord said to Moses, “Speak to the Israelites and say to them: ‘If a man or woman wants to make a special vow, a vow of dedication to the Lordas a Nazirite, they must abstain from wine and other fermented drink and must not drink vinegar made from wine or other fermented drink. They must not drink grape juice or eat grapes or raisins. As long as they remain under their Nazirite vow, they must not eat anything that comes from the grapevine, not even the seeds or skins.

“‘During the entire period of their Nazirite vow, no razor may be used on their head. They must be holy until the period of their dedication to the Lordis over; they must let their hair grow long.

“‘Throughout the period of their dedication to the Lord, the Nazirite must not go near a dead body. Even if their own father or mother or brother or sister dies, they must not make themselves ceremonially unclean on account of them, because the symbol of their dedication to God is on their head.Throughout the period of their dedication, they are consecrated to the Lord.

“‘If someone dies suddenly in the Nazirite’s presence, thus defiling the hair that symbolizes their dedication, they must shave their head on the seventh day—the day of their cleansing. 10 Then on the eighth day they must bring two doves or two young pigeons to the priest at the entrance to the tent of meeting. 11 The priest is to offer one as a sin offering and the other as a burnt offering to make atonement for the Nazirite because they sinned by being in the presence of the dead body. That same day they are to consecrate their head again. 12 They must rededicate themselves to the Lord for the same period of dedication and must bring a year-old male lambas a guilt offering. The previous days do not count, because they became defiled during their period of dedication.

13 “‘Now this is the law of the Nazirite when the period of their dedication is over. They are to be brought to the entrance to the tent of meeting. 14 There they are to present their offerings to the Lord: a year-old male lamb without defect for a burnt offering, a year-old ewe lamb without defect for a sin offering, a ram without defect for a fellowship offering, 15 together with their grain offerings and drink offerings, and a basket of bread made with the finest flour and without yeast—thick loaves with olive oil mixed in, and thin loaves brushed with olive oil.

16 “‘The priest is to present all these before the Lord and make the sin offering and the burnt offering. 17 He is to present the basket of unleavened bread and is to sacrifice the ram as a fellowship offering to the Lord, together with its grain offering and drink offering.

18 “‘Then at the entrance to the tent of meeting, the Nazirite must shave off the hair that symbolizes their dedication. They are to take the hair and put it in the fire that is under the sacrifice of the fellowship offering.

19 “‘After the Nazirite has shaved off the hair that symbolizes their dedication, the priest is to place in their hands a boiled shoulder of the ram, and one thick loaf and one thin loaf from the basket, both made without yeast. 20 The priest shall then wave these before the Lord as a wave offering; they are holy and belong to the priest, together with the breast that was waved and the thigh that was presented. After that, the Nazirite may drink wine.

21 “‘This is the law of the Nazirite who vows offerings to the Lord in accordance with their dedication, in addition to whatever else they can afford. They must fulfill the vows they have made, according to the law of the Nazirite.’”

The Priestly Blessing

22 The Lord said to Moses, 23 “Tell Aaron and his sons, ‘This is how you are to bless the Israelites. Say to them:

24 “‘“The Lord bless you
    and keep you;
25 the Lord make his face shine on you
    and be gracious to you;
26 the Lord turn his face toward you
    and give you peace.”’

27 “So they will put my name on the Israelites, and I will bless them.”

Go Deeper

Continuing through Numbers, we begin chapter six with God explaining the “Vow of a Nazarite” to Moses. The purpose of the Vow of a Nazarite was to express a separation from the world and an intimate desire to draw near and point back to God. Nazarites were to be visibly and morally set apart from others. The most famous Nazarites we see in scripture are three men- John the Baptist, Sampson, and Samuel. The Nazarite Vow was an opportunity for any Israelite, including women, to make a priest-like consecration to God by implementing restriction and practice. 

Examples like forbidding anything from the grapevine (v. 4) exemplified self-denial, abstaining from using a razor on the head outwardly demonstrating that they were under vow, and avoidance of a dead body exemplifying separation from death. The vow was meant to be lifelong and we see this lived out through John, Sampson, and Samuel. Furthermore, God describes to Moses the consequences of breaking the vow. God communicates that a sacrifice of atonement and rededication will be required to wipe away the former days of the vow. 

Verses 13-21 give instructions for the public ceremony and conclusion of the vow including a sacrifice of one male lamb, one ewe lamb, one ram, a basket of unleavened bread, and drink offerings. This was an expensive vow to fulfill and was meant to be expressive of total commitment to God. 

Lastly, we read the priestly blessing God gives to Moses to give to Aaron. Aaron then was to turn around and give it to his people. This was a command to bless the people. This blessing comes at great timing in that it reminds us that God wants to bless all of his people, not just those who make special acts to demonstrate separation from God. This eliminates the opportunity to think that God’s blessing is earned by special acts. Instead, this priestly blessing is an example of God’s desire and love to bless all of his people. As a result, we have one of the most impactful and well-known prayers written that we still recite today. This prayer declares God’s desire to bless His children. Just like we learn to write by tracing letters, we also learn to pray by reciting prayers–and what an amazing prayer that the Lord Himself gave us to pray and learn from. 


  1. What are ways that you are practicing self-denial to bring glory to the Father?
  2. What does the gifting of the priestly blessing prayer reveal about the Lord’s character?
  3. How has this prayer affected your walk with the Lord?

Listen Here

Leave a Comment below

Did you learn something today? Share it with our Bible Reading Plan community by commenting below.

Join the Team

Interested in writing for the Bible Reading Plan? Email

4 thoughts on “Numbers 6”

  1. Questions:
    1. I’ve committed to the “365 not so Hard” challenge given by JP. Studies show it takes 3 weeks to develop a new habit, I’m on day 12. As I practice self-denial it draws me closer to my Savior which makes it so worth it.
    2. I’ve recited and loved this priestly blessing since childhood. I’ve known the undeserved blessing, favor and faithfulness of the Lord throughout my life. Recently, I’ve experienced the gift of his peace in a tough decision. Oh, how I love him!
    3. This prayer has been so impactful on my life and given me hope that no matter the circumstance I could experience his blessing, protection, favor, mercy, compassion and peace.

  2. Nazirite, from Hebrew nazar, “to abstain from” or “to consecrate oneself to”. So as a follow of Jesus we should be doing this. From this flows Gods grace, mercy and blessings. Our new testament version of this would be “Therefore I urge you, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship.2 And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.” Romans 12:1-2. My thoughts are that God wants us to get rid of the junk ie idols in our life and replace them with Him. As we do so He is able to bless us beyond all we can ask or think due to being on the right road. Daily be in His word, pray pray and pray some more (remember that is just conversing with your Father), live you life as if though today is the last and you want all you come in contact with to know about Jesus and have their opportunity to be in eternity with you.

    God thank You for showing me examples of how to be the best for You. I desire to consecrate myself to You, help my understanding further and help me to live it. God sometimes there are minutes that I have a hard time renewing my mind. Help me get the plank out of my eye, take that pride I am having in that moment away so that I may see that situation or person as You do. God it just floors me how much You have done and so intricately to be able to have a relationship with me. That just makes me want to have a plethora of emotions with lots of WOOHOO’s involved! God thank You seems way not enough, but thank You beyond gratitudely thank You !!! in Jesus name amen

  3. Like Ella, I’ve heard and loved this priestly blessing most of my life. The church where Brent and I met and married often concluded worship services with the familiar song, “The Lord Bless You and Keep You” (Lutkin). We loved it so much we had our beloved church choir sing it at our wedding. You can listen to it here:

    It’s so much more than just another pretty church hymn, though!

    I love the commentary from Enduring Word, this passage in particular:

    “To be kept by the LORD is blessing indeed. Some are kept by their own sin and desire, some are kept by idolatry and greed, and others are kept by their own bitterness and anger. But to be kept by the LORD ensures life, peace, and success.”

    How often I allow myself to be kept by other things, especially my own sin and desire!

    Lord, how I long for this blessing, and the life and peace You offer! As you bestow Your blessings on me, may I receive them all in faith!

    Read the entire commentary at

  4. Today, I will pray about the significance of the FACE of God on me . . .

    25 the Lord make his FACE shine on you
    and be gracious to you;
    26 the Lord turn his FACE toward you
    and give you peace.”’

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.