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Acharei Mot

Acharei Mot

After the Death [of the Two Sons of Aaron]

The Eternal One spoke to Moses after the death the two sons of Aaron who died when they drew too close to the presence of the Eternal. - Leviticus 16:1

  • The duties that the head kohein must perform on Yom Kippur are delineated and the ceremony of the scapegoat is outlined. (16:1-28)
  • Moses instructs Aaron about the Yom Kippur laws for fasting and atonement. (16:29-34)
  • Warnings are issued against the offering of sacrifices outside the Sanctuary and the consumption of blood. (17:1-16)
  • Moses condemns the sexual practices of some neighboring peoples. Certain forms of sexual relations are prohibited. (18:1-30)

When do we read Acharei Mot?

2017 May 6 /10 Iyyar, 5777
2018 Apr 28 /13 Iyyar, 5778


  • By Robert Tornberg

    This week's Torah portion, Acharei Mot, "After the death" [of two of Aaron's sons], continues the focus on ritual purity that began earlier in Leviticus, and begins the section of the book known as the Holiness Code. Included are commandments regarding sacrifice and food (Leviticus 17:1-16), limitations on sexual behavior (18:1-30), and a substantial section on the ritual observance of Yom Kippur (although the term "Yom Kippur" does not appear in the parashah) in the wilderness, and, presumably, later when the Temple stood in Jerusalem.

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