Exodus 28:9

28:9 “You are to take two onyx stones and engrave on them the names of the sons of Israel,

Exodus 28:17-21

28:17 You are to set in it a setting for stones, four rows of stones, a row with a ruby, a topaz, and a beryl – the first row; 28:18 and the second row, a turquoise, a sapphire, and an emerald; 28:19 and the third row, a jacinth, an agate, and an amethyst; 28:20 and the fourth row, a chrysolite, an onyx, and a jasper. They are to be enclosed in gold in their filigree settings. 28:21 The stones are to be for the names of the sons of Israel, twelve, according to the number of their names. Each name according to the twelve tribes is to be like the engravings of a seal.

tn Although this is normally translated “Israelites,” here a more literal translation is clearer because it refers to the names of the twelve tribes – the actual sons of Israel.

sn U. Cassuto (Exodus, 375-76) points out that these are the same precious stones mentioned in Ezek 28:13 that were to be found in Eden, the garden of God. So the priest, when making atonement, was to wear the precious gems that were there and symbolized the garden of Eden when man was free from sin.

tn For clarity the words “the number of” have been supplied.

tn The phrase translated “the engravings of a seal” is an adverbial accusative of manner here.