C. The Origin and Exclusiveness of the Aaronic Priesthood

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Num 3:11, “And YHWH spoke to Moses saying,”
Num 3:12, “And I, behold, I have taken the Levites from among the children of Israel instead of all the firstborn that opens the womb from the children of Israel. And [hence] the Levites shall be Mine”
Num 3:13, “because all [the] firstborn [are] Mine. On [the] day I killed all [the] firstborn in [the] land of Egypt I set apart to Myself all [the] firstborn in Israel, both man and beast. They shall be Mine, I am YHWH,”
Num 3:5, “And YHWH spoke to Moses saying,”
Num 3:6, “bring [the] tribe of Levi near and present him before Aaron the priest that they may serve him.
Num 3:7, “And they shall attend to his needs and the needs of the whole congregation before [the] tent of meeting to perform [the] service of the tabernacle.”
Num 3:8, “And they shall attend to all [the] instruments of [the[ tent of meeting and the needs of [the] children of Israel to perform [the] service of the tabernacle.”
Num 3:9, “And you shall give the Levites to Aaron and to his sons. They [are] fully given to him from [the] children of Israel.”
Num 3:10, “And you shall appoint Aaron and his sons that they shall keep their priesthood. And the layman/outsider [2114 zar] who comes near shall be put to death.”
Num 18:6, “And I, behold, I have taken your [= Aaron and his sons]
brethren the Levites from among [the] children of Israel; [they are] a gift to you [= Aaron and his sons] given to YHWH, to attend to [the] service of [the] tent of meeting.”
Num 18:7, “And you [= Aaron] and your sons with you shall keep your priesthood for everything pertaining to the altar and for that behind [the] veil, and you shall serve. I give your priesthood [to you as] a service of gift.

And the layman/outsider [2114 zar] who comes near shall be put to death.” It is seen here that only Aaron and his sons may be priests, and all Levites who are not descended from Aaron are to serve under the authority of the priests. Certain duties are exclusive to priests and other duties are for other Levites under the direction of the priests. Here a non-Aaronite is referred to as a layman/outsider [2114 zar], and if such a person attempts to come near (get close, meddle, or interfere), death shall be the punishment.

The Hebrew word zar is discussed on page 279 of HALOT where several meaning are supplied based on the context, and Num 3:10; 18:7 are listed under the general meaning “unauthorized person”, and for these verses the submeaning “not an Aaronite” is stated in HALOT.