This parasha begins with God telling Moses the rules for purifying a leper who has been declared clean by the priest. This is done through specific sacrificial offerings, shaving and bathing.

If a house is affected by a plague, the priest determines if it can be saved by scrapping and replastering its walls. IF not, the house is to be destroyed. This process can take up to 19 days.

Laws of ritual purity regarding bodily functions, such as discharges in both men and women, are described. The purification rituals involve washing clothing and bedding, bathing and offering sacrifices. 

Torah Portion in English

1) The Lord spoke to Moses, saying: 2 )This shall be the ritual for a leper at the time that he is to be cleansed. When it has been reported to the priest, 3 )the priest shall go outside the camp. If the priest sees that the leper has been healed of his scaly affection, 4 )the priest shall order two live clean birds, cedar wood, crimson stuff, and hyssop to be brought for him who is to be cleansed. 5) The priest shall order one of the birds slaughtered over fresh water in an earthen vessel; 6) and he shall take the live bird, along with the cedar wood, the crimson stuff, and the hyssop, and dip them together with the live bird in the blood of the bird that was slaughtered over the fresh water. 7) He shall then sprinkle it seven times on him who is to be cleansed of the eruption and cleanse him; and he shall set the live bird free in the open country. 8 )The one to be cleansed shall wash his clothes, shave off all his hair, and bathe in water; then he shall be clean. After that he may enter the camp, but he must remain outside his tent seven days. 9) On the seventh day he shall shave off all his hair—of head, beard, and eyebrows. When he has shaved off all his hair, he shall wash his clothes and bathe his body in water; then he shall be clean. 10) On the eighth day he shall take two male lambs without blemish, one ewe lamb in its first year without blemish, three-tenths of a measure of choice flour with oil mixed in for a meal offering, and one log of oil. 11 )These shall be presented before the Lord, with the man to be cleansed, at the entrance of the Tent of Meeting, by the priest who performs the cleansing. 12) The priest shall take one of the male lambs and offer it with the log of oil as a guilt offering, and he shall elevate them as an elevation offering before the Lord.

Getting to Know my Parasha

What Does my Parasha Say?

  1. What does the priest do to cleanse a leper (or person who was ill with a skin disease)?
  2. What does the person who is being healed do?
  3. What happens with a house that is “afflicted”?
  4. What seems to be a common element in purification?