Exodus 4:17
Parallel Verses
New International Version
But take this staff in your hand so you can perform the signs with it."

King James Bible
And thou shalt take this rod in thine hand, wherewith thou shalt do signs.

Darby Bible Translation
And thou shalt take this staff in thy hand, with which thou shalt do the signs.

World English Bible
You shall take this rod in your hand, with which you shall do the signs."

Young's Literal Translation
and this rod thou dost take in thy hand, with which thou doest the signs.'

Exodus 4:17 Parallel
Clarke's Commentary on the Bible

Thou shalt take this rod - From the story of Moses's rod the heathens have invented the fables of the thyrsus of Bacchus, and the caduceus of Mercury. Cicero reckons five Bacchuses, one of which, according to Orpheus, was born of the river Nile; but, according to the common opinion, he was born on the banks of that river. Bacchus is expressly said to have been exposed on the river Nile, hence he is called Nilus, both by Diodorus and Macrobius; and in the hymns of Orpheus he is named Myses, because he was drawn out of the water. He is represented by the poets as being very beautiful, and an illustrious warrior; they report him to have overrun all Arabia with a numerous army both of men and women. He is said also to have been an eminent law-giver, and to have written his laws on two tables. He always carried in his hand the thyrsus, a rod wreathed with serpents, and by which he is reported to have wrought many miracles. Any person acquainted with the birth and exploits of the poetic Bacchus will at once perceive them to be all borrowed from the life and acts of Moses, as recorded in the Pentateuch; and it would be losing time to show the parallel, by quoting passages from the book of Exodus.

The caduceus or rod of Mercury is well known in poetic fables. It is another copy Of the rod of Moses. He also is reported to have wrought a multitude of miracles by this rod; and particularly he is said to kill and make alive, to send souls to the invisible world and bring them back from thence. Homer represents Mercury taking his rod to work miracles precisely in the same way as God commands Moses to take his.

Ἑρμης δε ψυχας Κυλληνιος εξεκαλειτο

Ανδρων μνηστηρων· εχε δε ῬΑΒΔΟΝ μετα χερσιν

Καλην, χρυσειην, τῃ τ' ανδρων ομματα θελγει,

Ὡν εθελει, τους δ' αυτε και ὑπνωοντας εγειρει.

Odyss., lib. xxiv., ver. 1.

Cyllenian Hermes now call'd forth the souls

Of all the suitors; with his golden Wand

Of power, to seal in balmy sleep whose eyes

Soe'er he will, and open them again.


Virgil copies Homer, but carries the parallel farther, tradition having probably furnished him with more particulars; but in both we may see a disguised copy of the sacred history, from which indeed the Greek and Roman poets borrowed most of their beauties.

Tum Virgam Capit: hac animas ille evocat Orco


Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

Exodus 4:2 And the LORD said to him, What is that in your hand? And he said, A rod.

Exodus 7:9,19 When Pharaoh shall speak to you, saying, Show a miracle for you: then you shall say to Aaron, Take your rod, and cast it before Pharaoh...

1 Corinthians 1:27 But God has chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise...

January 13. "Thou Shalt be to Him Instead of God" (Ex. Iv. 16).
"Thou shalt be to him instead of God" (Ex. iv. 16). Such was God's promise to Moses, and such the high character that Moses was to assume toward Aaron, his brother. May it not suggest a high and glorious place that each of us may occupy toward all whom we meet, instead of God? What a dignity and glory it would give our lives, could we uniformly realize this high calling! How it would lead us to act toward our fellow-men! God can always be depended upon. God is without variableness or shadow of turning.
Rev. A. B. Simpson—Days of Heaven Upon Earth

A Bundle of Myrrh is My Well-Beloved unto Me; He Shall Abide Between My Breasts.
When the Bride, or rather the lover (for she is not yet a bride), has found her Bridegroom, she is so transported with joy, that she is eager to be instantly united to Him. But the union of perpetual enjoyment is not yet arrived. He is mine, she says, I cannot doubt that He gives Himself to me this moment, since I feel it, but He is to me, as it were, a bundle of myrrh. He is not yet a Bridegroom whom I may embrace in the nuptial bed, but a bundle of crosses, pains and mortifications; a bloody husband
Madame Guyon—Song of Songs of Solomon

Appendix xii. The Baptism of Proselytes
ONLY those who have made study of it can have any idea how large, and sometimes bewildering, is the literature on the subject of Jewish Proselytes and their Baptism. Our present remarks will be confined to the Baptism of Proselytes. 1. Generally, as regards proselytes (Gerim) we have to distinguish between the Ger ha-Shaar (proselyte of the gate) and Ger Toshabh (sojourner,' settled among Israel), and again the Ger hatstsedeq (proselyte of righteousness) and Ger habberith (proselyte of the covenant).
Alfred Edersheim—The Life and Times of Jesus the Messiah

A Canticle of Love
It is not only when He is about to send me some trial that Our Lord gives me warning and awakens my desire for it. For years I had cherished a longing which seemed impossible of realisation--to have a brother a Priest. I often used to think that if my little brothers had not gone to Heaven, I should have had the happiness of seeing them at the Altar. I greatly regretted being deprived of this joy. Yet God went beyond my dream; I only asked for one brother who would remember me each day at the Holy
Therese Martin (of Lisieux)—The Story of a Soul

Cross References
Exodus 4:2
Then the LORD said to him, "What is that in your hand?" "A staff," he replied.

Exodus 4:20
So Moses took his wife and sons, put them on a donkey and started back to Egypt. And he took the staff of God in his hand.

Exodus 7:9
"When Pharaoh says to you, 'Perform a miracle,' then say to Aaron, 'Take your staff and throw it down before Pharaoh,' and it will become a snake."

Exodus 14:16
Raise your staff and stretch out your hand over the sea to divide the water so that the Israelites can go through the sea on dry ground.

Exodus 17:9
Moses said to Joshua, "Choose some of our men and go out to fight the Amalekites. Tomorrow I will stand on top of the hill with the staff of God in my hands."

Numbers 20:8
"Take the staff, and you and your brother Aaron gather the assembly together. Speak to that rock before their eyes and it will pour out its water. You will bring water out of the rock for the community so they and their livestock can drink."

2 Kings 4:29
Elisha said to Gehazi, "Tuck your cloak into your belt, take my staff in your hand and run. Don't greet anyone you meet, and if anyone greets you, do not answer. Lay my staff on the boy's face."

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