February 26, 2014

Pomegranates and Bells of the High Priest


Along the bottom hem of the Jewish high priest's blue robe was a row of pomegranates and bells (see Exodus 28:33-35 and Exodus 39:24-26). The pomegranates were to be made of purple, blue and scarlet wool (similar to the ephod and breastplate, except without the thread of gold). Though the Bible does not tell us how many bells or pomegranates were to be included, Jewish tradition states that there were to be 36, 70, or 72 pomegranates in total (Temple Institute). As I was more interested in the look (and as the Bible does not actually prescribe the number), I included 17 pomegranates and 17 bells.


The pomegranate is a symbol of the promised land, as it was one of the fruits brought back by the spies when they entered Canaan (see Numbers 13:23). It is also a symbol of posterity or prosperity, as there are literally hundreds of seeds in each fruit. The pomegranate is also a symbol of royalty and the temple, as the fruit has a small crown on the top, and as the design was used on the pillars of Solomon's temple (see 1 Kings 7:18-20).

Thus, as the high priest walked around, he carried on him the signs of the promised land, great posterity, royalty, and temple blessings. All blessings promised to those who truly understood and apply in their lives the sacrifice of the Great High Priest, even Jesus Christ.



2 comments:

  1. Did you make the pomegranates yourself or did you buy them?

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  2. Yes, I made them myself. They are made from the twisted yarn I created (see link below) with a small foam ball inside to keep the shape. http://goo.gl/D0zod6

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