Numbers 17

Aaron’s Rod Buds

1Then the LORD spoke to Moses, saying, 2“Speak to the sons of Israel and get rods from them, a rod for each father’s household, from all their leaders according to their fathers’ households, twelve rods. Write every man’s name on his rod, 3and write Aaron’s name on the rod of Levi [his ancestor]; for there is one rod for the head of each of their fathers’ households. 4You shall then deposit them in the Tent of Meeting (tabernacle) in front of [the ark of] the Testimony, where I meet with you. 5“It shall be that the rod of the man whom I choose will bud, and I will no longer hear the constant grumblings of the Israelites, who are grumbling against you.” 6So Moses spoke to the Israelites, and each of their leaders gave him a rod, one for each leader according to their fathers’ households, twelve rods, and the rod of Aaron was among their rods. 7So Moses deposited the rods before the LORD in the Tent of the Testimony (tabernacle).

8Now on the next day Moses went into the Tent of the Testimony, and the rod of Aaron of the tribe of Levi had sprouted and put out buds and produced blossoms and yielded [ripe] almonds. 9Moses brought out all the rods from the presence of LORD to all the Israelites; and they looked, and each man took his rod. 10But the LORD said to Moses, “Put Aaron’s rod back before the Testimony [in the ark], to be kept as a [warning] sign for the rebellious and contentious, so that you may put an end to their murmurings [of discontent] against Me, so that they do not die.” 11And Moses did so; just as the LORD had commanded him, so he did.

12The sons of Israel said to Moses, “Look, we perish, we are doomed, all doomed! 13“Everyone who approaches, who approaches the tabernacle of the LORD, must die. Are we to perish completely?”