Question:

In leviticus 11:20-23 it said that the Israelites could not eat any flying creeping thing that is on all fours. What was God refering to when he means flying creeping on all fours? I can’t find any creeping flying animal or insect that is on all fours.

Answer:

Scholars will agree that Leviticus 11:20-23 is a command to not eat the majority of insects. The phrase "flying creeping things" is a reference to insects which fly in general, such as beetles, some ants and many more insects. The phrase "on all fours" is an expression for those with legs which walk. Skeptics have tried to paint this as a Bible error, but this is a big stretch. The phrase "all fours" is an idiom for walking (with the exception of humans, birds and a few others which walk on two legs. To say that the Israelites were unaware that insects had six legs or that the writer of Leviticus made a scientific error of not knowing insects have six legs is to look for a mistake where there is none. Obviously the writer of Leviticus knew that insects have six legs and also obviously Jewish writers used idioms freely.

John Oakes

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