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Ezekiel 28:14 does the Hebrew say you were the cherub or placed with the cherub?

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You were an anointed guardian cherub. I placed you; you were on the holy mountain of God; in the midst of the stones of fire you walked. (Ezekiel 28:14 ESV)

את כרוב ממשח הסוכך ונתתיך בהר קדש אלהים היית בתוך אבני אש התהלכת׃

Without the vowel-points את can have many meanings and purpose.

  • אֵת - ploughshare. strong's H855
  • אֵת - against, with, together, in, him, me, upon. strong's H854
  • אֵת - sign of the definite direct object, generally preceding and indicating the accusative. strong's H853
  • אָת - sign, miraculous signs, wonders. strong's H852

In Ezekiel 28:14 was it first written as את which makes it open to interpretation but after 900 A.D. vowel-points were added and today it look like this has אַ֨תְּ (at) strong's H859 which means you, a feminine, singular. The masculine singular equivalent is אַתָּה (atah) strong's H859 yet is the description of the Hebrew parsing: Pronoun - second person masculine singular. tagged as Pro‑2ms interlinear Ezekiel 28:14

So what is it את כרוב ממשח At or Eth cherub mimšaḥ!?

Original MT (masoretic text) is open for suggestion for either you / with;

את כרוב ממשח הסוכך ונתתיך בהר קדש אלהים היית בתוך אבני אש התהלכת

Brenton LXX has with;

From the day that thou wast created thou with the cherub: I set thee on the holy mount of God; thou wast in the midst of the stones of fire. Jezekiel 28

Peshitta has with;

You were with the Cherbu who was anointed and a shield. I put you on the mountain of the holiness of God. You were amid the rocks of fire. Ezekiel 28.14

MT 900 A.D (from Codex Leningrad) has you;

אַ֨תְּ־כְּר֔וּב מִמְשַׁ֖ח הַסֹּוכֵ֑ךְ וּנְתַתִּ֗יךָ בְּהַ֨ר קֹ֤דֶשׁ אֱלֹהִים֙ הָיִ֔יתָ בְּתֹ֥וךְ אַבְנֵי־אֵ֖שׁ הִתְהַלָּֽכְתָּ׃ W. Codex Leningrad

Latin Vulgate has you;

tu cherub extentus et protegens et posui te in monte sancto Dei in medio lapidum ignitorum ambulasti Ezechielis 28


The MT identifies the monarch of Tyre as the cherub, the LXX distinguishes the royal from the cherub. I would lean to the LXX and these translations for Ezekiel 28:14.

Aramaic Bible in Plain English

And you have been with the Cherub who is anointed and who shelters, and I have settled you in the mountain of the holiness of God, and you have been among the stones of fire

Brenton Septuagint Translation

From the day that thou wast created thou wast with the cherub: I set thee on the holy mount of God; thou wast in the midst of the stones of fire.

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The Hebrew says "You [are/were]" but the spelling is unusual. In context we would expect a masculine form, but the word for "you" is in a form that is usually feminine (אַתְּ).

If we do not take into consideration the vowels (which were not written in ancient scrolls, but only preserved by oral tradition), the word looks like it could spell אֶת, which can mean "with." This appears to be the reading followed by the Septuagint.1


1 μετὰ τοῦ χερουβ ἔθηκά σε.... Alfred Rahlfs and Robert Hanhart, eds., Septuaginta: SESB Edition (Stuttgart: Deutsche Bibelgesellschaft, 2006), ΙΕΖΕΚΙΗΛ 28:14.

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    thanks for the answer. I edited in a reference to the specific text in the LXX for you to back up that claim. It's best practice to always cite sources for and/or fully develop the logic behind assertions here. This answer would be even stronger if you cited a lexicon or Hebrew grammar for your assertions about the pointing affecting meaning here. Thanks.
    – Dan
    Feb 26 '14 at 19:59

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