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Exodus 28:6-14

Context

28:6 “They are to make the ephod of gold, blue, purple, scarlet, and fine twisted linen, the work of an artistic designer. 28:7 It is to have two shoulder pieces attached to two of its corners, so it can be joined together. 1  28:8 The artistically woven waistband 2  of the ephod that is on it is to be like it, of one piece with the ephod, 3  of gold, blue, purple, scarlet, and fine twisted linen.

28:9 “You are to take two onyx stones and engrave on them the names of the sons of Israel, 4  28:10 six 5  of their names on one stone, and the six remaining names on the second stone, according to the order of their birth. 6  28:11 You are to engrave the two stones with the names of the sons of Israel with the work of an engraver in stone, like the engravings of a seal; 7  you are to have them set 8  in gold filigree 9  settings. 28:12 You are to put the two stones on the shoulders of the ephod, stones of memorial for the sons of Israel, and Aaron will bear their names before the Lord on his two shoulders for a memorial. 10  28:13 You are to make filigree settings of gold 28:14 and two braided chains of pure gold, like a cord, and attach the chains to the settings.

1 tn Here the Pual perfect with the vav (ו) consecutive provides the purpose clause (equal to a final imperfect); the form follows the use of the active participle, “attached” or more Heb “joining.”

2 tn This is the rendering of the word חֵשֶׁב (kheshev), cognate to the word translated “designer” in v. 6. Since the entire ephod was of the same material, and this was of the same piece, it is unclear why this is singled out as “artistically woven.” Perhaps the word is from another root that just describes the item as a “band.” Whatever the connection, this band was to be of the same material, and the same piece, as the ephod, but perhaps a different pattern (S. R. Driver, Exodus, 301). It is this sash that attaches the ephod to the priest’s body, that is, at the upper border of the ephod and clasped together at the back.

3 tn Heb “from it” but meaning “of one [the same] piece”; the phrase “the ephod” has been supplied.

4 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.

5 tn This is in apposition to the direct object of the verb “engrave.” It further defines how the names were to be engraved – six on one and the other six on the other.

6 tn Heb “according to their begettings” (the major word in the book of Genesis). What is meant is that the names would be listed in the order of their ages.

7 sn Expert stone or gem engravers were used to engrave designs and names in identification seals of various sizes. It was work that skilled artisans did.

8 tn Or “you will mount them” (NRSV similar).

9 tn Or “rosettes,” shield-like frames for the stones. The Hebrew word means “to plait, checker.”

10 sn This was to be a perpetual reminder that the priest ministers on behalf of the twelve tribes of Israel. Their names would always be borne by the priests.



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