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the Week of Proper 11 / Ordinary 16
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Bible Dictionaries
Reed

Easton's Bible Dictionary

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  • "Paper reeds" (Isaiah 19:7; RSV, "reeds"). Heb. 'aroth, properly green herbage growing in marshy places.

  • Heb. kaneh (1 Kings 14:15; Job 40:21; Isaiah 19:6 ), whence the Gr. kanna, a "cane," a generic name for a reed of any kind.

    The reed of Egypt and Palestine is the Arundo donax, which grows to the height of 12 feet, its stalk jointed like the bamboo, "with a magnificent panicle of blossom at the top, and so slender and yielding that it will lie perfectly flat under a gust of wind, and immediately resume its upright position." It is used to illustrate weakness (2 Kings 18:21; Ezekiel 29:6 ), also fickleness or instability (Matthew 11:7; Compare Ephesians 4:14 ).

    A "bruised reed" (Isaiah 42:3; Matthew 12:20 ) is an emblem of a believer weak in grace. A reed was put into our Lord's hands in derision (Matthew 27:29 ); and "they took the reed and smote him on the head" (30). The "reed" on which they put the sponge filled with vinegar (Matthew 27:48 ) was, according to (John 19:29 ), a hyssop stalk, which must have been of some length, or perhaps a bunch of hyssop twigs fastened to a rod with the sponge. (See CANE .)

    Bibliography Information
    Easton, Matthew George. Entry for 'Reed'. Easton's Bible Dictionary. https://www.studylight.org/​dictionaries/​eng/​ebd/​r/reed.html. 1897.
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