John The Baptist’s Diet

This entry is part 75 of 88 in the series Inquiring Minds
Image by Dominic Alberts from Pixabay

When John ate locusts in the wilderness, was it the flower or the insect?

Matthew records that John was a bit of a wild character (Matthew 3:4-6). Wearing camel’s hair reminds us, and the people who came out to be baptized by him, of Elijah. He was a gruff character like Elijah who stood up to the authorities of his day when they were in sin.

He needed that rough exterior to live in the wilderness around the Jordan. Just to survive in the area near the Jordan River where he baptized people took cunning and strength. The Bible explicitly mentions that he eats locusts and wild honey.

So did he eat locusts as in the insect or the flower? The Greek word for “locust” refers to the insect, so John the Baptist ate the insect as part of his diet. Locusts were plentiful in the wilderness of the Jordan. He also ate wild honey most likely from bees. These were readily available in the area of the Jordan.

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