The shepherd's rod
It is like a policeman's club. It is often made of oak wood and has a knob on the end of it. Into this knob nails are sometimes driven so as to make a better weapon. It is very useful for protection, and no shepherd would be without it.
It was no doubt the rod that David used in protecting his sheep from wild animals (I Samuel 17:34-36). He mentions both the rod and the staff in his Shepherd Psalm (Psalm 23:4).
The prophet Ezekiel refers to the custom of the sheep passing under the shepherd's rod for the purpose of counting or inspecting them. "I will cause you to pass under the rod" (Ezekiel 20:37). The law of Moses speaks of tithing the flock for a specific purpose at such a time. "And concerning the tithe of the herd, or of the flock, even of whatsoever passeth under the rod, the tenth shall be holy unto the Lord" (Leviticus 27:32). To do this Jewish writers tell us that the shepherd allowed the animals to come by him as they would under the rod at a narrow entrance. The head of the rod was dipped into some coloring fluid and was allowed to come down upon every tenth one that passed by, thus marking him as the one to be given to the LORD for sacrificial purposes.
, which the ancient kings of the East usually had with them, had its origin in the shepherd's rod. Kings were considered to be shepherds of their people. Thus the sceptre, or rod, of the king became a symbol of protection, power and authority. Young translates Micah 7:14: "Rule thou thy people with thy rod, the flock of thine inheritance."
The shepherd's staff
. David mentions the staff along with the rod in his Shepherd Psalm (Psalm 23:4). It is a stick five or six feet long and sometimes but not always has a crook at the end of it. It is used like Western men would use a cane or walking stick. It is useful in handling the sheep and also for protection.