Ezekiel 7:10 New International Version

"'See, the day! See, it comes! Doom has burst forth, the rod has budded, arrogance has blossomed!

Numbers 17:8

And it came to pass, that on the morrow Moses went into the tabernacle of witness; and, behold, the rod of Aaron for the house of Levi was budded, and brought forth buds, and bloomed blossoms, and yielded almonds.

What do these rods have in common?

2 Answers 2


The wording of the phrases in the two verses is a little different:

Num 17:8

פָּרַ֥ח מַטֵּֽה = budded/sprouted rod

Eze 7:10

הַמַּטֶּ֔ה פָּרַ֖ח = the rod budded/sprouted

There are a number of other differences in the way these two phrases are used:

  • Num 17:8 is used as a sign/omen; Eze 7:10 is used as a metaphor
  • Num 17:8 is used to point to the correct choice (in this case of priest); Eze 7:10 is used a metaphor for sin and its baleful results

I do not see a hermeneutic connection between these two verses.


Does Ezekiel 7:10 allude to Numbers 17:8?

What do these rods have in common?


1. Probably.
2. Both are used in the sense of something "coming to fruition."

The reference from the Book of Numbers (17:8) is demonstrating God's power over life. However, in the passage from Ezekiel, the word is assumes another meaning: "blossom" can also denote a final stage of development, whether that progression happens to good or bad.

In Numbers 17, Aaron's rod brought forth flowers and fruit representative of life. In Ezekiel, the "blossoming" is exactly the opposite, as God is pronouncing judgment: "Your doom has gone forth..." He is metaphorically stating (as opposed to Aaron's literal rod) that the arrogance of Israel has come to fruition, it has "blossomed" — and so has God's imminent condemnation.

While the two passages (and Books) differ considerably, it is very plausible that the references to "blossoming" represent Aaron's rod, the concept of something having fully matured. And, since Numbers was written long before Ezekiel, the imagery could certainly be that of Aaron's rod blossoming — or having arrived in the latter text.

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