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  #1  
Old Jul 13, '11, 12:06 am
MarkRA MarkRA is offline
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Default why locusts and wild honey

it sounds cool but was there any reason John ate locusts and wild honey (other than that it had been prophecied that he would)?
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  #2  
Old Jul 13, '11, 1:19 am
karebear92 karebear92 is offline
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Default Re: why locusts and wild honey

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Originally Posted by MarkRA View Post
it sounds cool but was there any reason John ate locusts and wild honey (other than that it had been prophecied that he would)?
It essentially attests to what he was doing, where he was doing it, and what he was sacrificing. He ate wild honey and locusts because he was "preaching in the wilderness of Judea" (Matthew 3:1). He ate was was available to him in the area he was preaching. This goes hand in hand with what he wore:"camels hair, and a leather belt around his waist" (Matthew 3:4). He did not have the most elegant clothes or the most fulfilling diet as the high priests had. In fact, he made do with less than most regular people did, despite being the "prophet of the Most High" (Luke 1:76). He gave up much to prepare the way for the Messiah.

Wild honey was not cultivated, obviously, so it was not of the same quality as regular honey, but that is what he ate because that was available to him. Obviously locusts are not the most appetizing, but he would have eaten anything, so long as he was able to prepare the way for Jesus.

This is just my interpretation. I am more than open to corrections.
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  #3  
Old Jul 13, '11, 2:47 am
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odhiambo odhiambo is offline
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Default Re: why locusts and wild honey

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it sounds cool but was there any reason John ate locusts and wild honey (other than that it had been prophecied that he would)?
I have always thought that John the Baptist ate locusts and wild honey because this was what was available to him out there in the wilderness.
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  #4  
Old Jul 13, '11, 3:48 am
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Default Re: why locusts and wild honey

Out in the midwest they have a locust festival when this one particular locust (I forget how it's spelled, but it starts with a "c") is unusually prolific. One of the delicacies served are candied locusts. They're actually supposed to be pretty tasty. I've heard one of the candied varieties are locusts dipped in honey. I've had wild honey, in the comb, and it was pretty good, not at all like the overrefined stuff you get in the supermarket. You had to scrape off the wax and watch out for the occasional bee larva, but it was almost a smoky-sweet taste. I'm pretty adventurous when it comes to culinary matters, and definitely would give the locusts a try if I were in the area during the festival. Bottom line-- St. John's diet was probably pretty tasty! At least it was tastier than snake (which I've had, tastes like rubbery chicken.) But of course it wasn't as filling as lamb or beef, which were the popular domesticated foods of the middle east of biblical times. So it seems to me that his diet was something you would find if you were living off the land, proclaiming the Word of God, enough to give you energy and protein for muscle repair, enough to make you look lean and ripped, but not enough to get fat on.
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Old Jul 13, '11, 6:04 am
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Default Re: why locusts and wild honey

Hi Mark,
If isolated in the desert wilderness, he could only eat what was there to be caught and eaten. He had to depend on the resources available.
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  #6  
Old Jul 13, '11, 6:15 am
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Aelred Minor Aelred Minor is offline
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Default Re: why locusts and wild honey

Let me point out there was probably some element of voluntary asceticism in his choice of diet, whether directly or just because as others have pointed out he chose to live in the wilderness and had limited food resources available to him out there.

Also remember that he was further limited in his options by the Jewish kosher laws he had to observe. Locusts and honey are kosher.
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  #7  
Old Jul 13, '11, 6:22 am
LaSainte LaSainte is offline
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Default Re: why locusts and wild honey

Actually, locusts and wild honey would be EXCELLENT for you if you were trying to survive of of very little food in the desert. Locusts are chock full of protein. Honey is one of nature's perfect foods. It doesn't contain regular sugar, so the sugars in it do not have to go through the digestive process in order to raise your blood sugar-it raises your blood sugar almost instantly, providing lots of energy. Also, honey is a natural antiseptic and can even be used to treat wounds. Honey also never goes bad. Even thousands of years later, the honey found in Egyptian tombs is still edible.

Sounds to be like John the Baptist was a pretty good survivalist
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  #8  
Old Jul 13, '11, 7:02 am
TimothyH TimothyH is offline
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Default Re: why locusts and wild honey

Cannan was the "Land of milk and honey."

Northern Israel was the land of milk, where goats and sheep were herded and farming took place. The north, occupied by the ten tribes of "Israel" is better farmland, much more lush than the south. Southern Israel, the land of the tribes of Judah and Benjamin, is more arid, the land of bees and honey. Milk in the north, honey in the south.

Recall that during the divided kingdom, the ten tribes in the north (Land of Israel) were seperated and to a certain extent at war with the two southern tribes of Judah and Benjamin (Land of Judah). At the very beginning of the divided kingdom, right after Solomon died, king Rehoboam in the north, set up two golden calfs, one in Bethel and one in Dan, saying...
"The kingdom will return to David's house. If now this people go up to offer sacrifices in the temple of the LORD in Jerusalem, the hearts of this people will return to their master, Rehoboam, king of Judah, and they will kill me." After taking counsel, the king made two calves of gold and said to the people: "You have been going up to Jerusalem long enough. Here is your God, O Israel, who brought you up from the land of Egypt." And he put one in Bethel, the other in Dan. (1 Kings 12:26-29)
King Rehoboam basically took the ten northern tribes back to the time of worshipping the golden calf at Mt. Sinai, throwing away centuries of mosaic law and abandoning God's laws about temple worship. Spiritually, the north was dead and Bethel became a center of the worst kind of pagan worship. Elijiah and Elisha the prophets were from the south but operated in the north, preaching to the pagans there.

After the Babylonian exile, the vast majority of the ten northern tribes didn't even bother to come home. They had completely abandoned their identity as part of the nation of Israel and thus as God's chosen people. They had become like the nations around them in diet, language, and pagan religion and just stayed in Babylon. Most of the nation of Judah however, returned to the land in the south to rebuild Jerusalem and the temple and to begin temple worship again. And that, I think, is the background for John the Baptist eating locust and wild honey.

John is the "New Elijiah", a prophet like Elijiah and Elisha, sent to herald the advent of the Christ. Since Cannan was the "Land of milk and honey", living in the desert and eating locuts and honey, rather than living in a lush forest eating milk and meat, was a way to identify what kind of prophet John was and where he was from. Elijiah and Elisha were from the south but operated in "enemy territory", preaching the God of Israel to the worst kind of pagans. And such was John. John acted the same way, saying "You brood of vipers!" and such things to the Pharisees. It's important to note that Jesus was a prophet from the south, the land of Judah, as well and spent 40 days in the desert.

The stories in the Old Testament are so interesting, and a good Bible study helps to put the New Testament in its proper perspective, as fulfillment of the Old Testament. One really can't fully understand the New Testament until they understand the history, timeline, and narrative story in the Old Testament.


-Tim-
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  #9  
Old Jul 13, '11, 7:29 pm
Ignatius Ignatius is offline
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Default Re: why locusts and wild honey

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Originally Posted by MarkRA View Post
it sounds cool but was there any reason John ate locusts and wild honey (other than that it had been prophecied that he would)?
Because that's all that was available? Maybe an occasional lizard thrown in.
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  #10  
Old Jul 13, '11, 8:13 pm
TimothyH TimothyH is offline
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Default Re: why locusts and wild honey

I'll add to my previous post above (number 8) that the prophet Joel has some things to say about Locusts...
What the cutter left, the locust swarm has eaten; What the locust swarm left, the grasshopper has eaten; And what the grasshopper left, the devourer has eaten. (Joel 1:4)
All refer to various species of locusts and the book of the prophet Joel is worth reading.

The stuff in the new testament wasn't just stuff that was made up or stuff that happened for no reason. Matthew, Mark, Luke and John didn't just decide to add in little interesting things about what John ate and what he wore because they found this information interesting and thought it would be cool if we posted about it on CAF twenty centuries later. The primary author of scripture is God, and he has a message he want's us to know, again, not just because they are interesting facts. God wants us to apply what he is trying to tell us to our daily lives, to help us be holy and perfect, so that we can spend eternity with him.

The fact that John at locusts and honey is significant as is the fact that he lived in the land of milk and honey. The prophet Joel tells us about an army of locusts and John tells us in the Book of Revelation about locusts with hair like women and metal breastplates like armor. This all means something more than just a notation about John's diet.

And I don't know what it means. But it is there for a reason, that much is sure, and I'll let everyone know if I figure it out.


-Tim-
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  #11  
Old Jul 15, '11, 2:22 pm
ryanoneil ryanoneil is offline
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Default Re: why locusts and wild honey

Locusts were a "clean" insect that he could eat and it shows that he was faithful to the Torah.

"The various winged insects that walk on all fours are loathsome for you. But of the various winged insects that walk on all fours you may eat those that have jointed legs for leaping on the ground; hence of these you may eat the following: the various kinds of locusts, the various kinds of grasshoppers, the various kinds of katydids, and the various kinds of crickets. All other winged insects that have four legs are loathsome for you. (Lev 11:20-23)
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  #12  
Old Jul 17, '11, 1:57 pm
John7 John7 is offline
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Default Re: why locusts and wild honey

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ignatius View Post
Maybe an occasional lizard thrown in.


lizard's don't seem to be kosher
Leviticus 11:29-30
`Now these are to you the unclean
among the swarming things which swarm on the earth:
the mole,
and the mouse,
and the great lizard in its kinds,
and the gecko,
and the crocodile,
and the lizard,
and the sand reptile,
and the chameleon.'
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  #13  
Old Jun 8, '12, 10:25 am
Tbenz Tbenz is offline
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Default Re: why locusts and wild honey

Quote:
Originally Posted by TimothyH View Post
I'll add to my previous post above (number 8) that the prophet Joel has some things to say about Locusts...
What the cutter left, the locust swarm has eaten; What the locust swarm left, the grasshopper has eaten; And what the grasshopper left, the devourer has eaten. (Joel 1:4)
All refer to various species of locusts and the book of the prophet Joel is worth reading.

The stuff in the new testament wasn't just stuff that was made up or stuff that happened for no reason. Matthew, Mark, Luke and John didn't just decide to add in little interesting things about what John ate and what he wore because they found this information interesting and thought it would be cool if we posted about it on CAF twenty centuries later. The primary author of scripture is God, and he has a message he want's us to know, again, not just because they are interesting facts. God wants us to apply what he is trying to tell us to our daily lives, to help us be holy and perfect, so that we can spend eternity with him.

The fact that John at locusts and honey is significant as is the fact that he lived in the land of milk and honey. The prophet Joel tells us about an army of locusts and John tells us in the Book of Revelation about locusts with hair like women and metal breastplates like armor. This all means something more than just a notation about John's diet.

And I don't know what it means. But it is there for a reason, that much is sure, and I'll let everyone know if I figure it out.


-Tim-
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  #14  
Old Jun 8, '12, 10:26 am
Tbenz Tbenz is offline
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Default Re: why locusts and wild honey

I totally agree. I don't quit understand what the other post are all about but the certainly missed it.
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  #15  
Old Jun 8, '12, 11:01 am
Publisher Publisher is offline
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Default Re: why locusts and wild honey

As I understand the locusts were dried and made into a powder....they were then mixed with the honey and eaten as "cakes"...they could be carried and they were nutritious.
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