Tag Archives: Locusts

Photos worth 1000 words (or more)


Shmuel Browns, Israel guide and photographer, has posted the best photo of a locust that I have seen. And the photos of flowers in the Judean Desert are something most tourists never get to see. Look here.

From the top of the Great Pyramid

Carl Rasmussen, at his HolyLandPhoto’s blog, calls attention to some photos made by some Russians from the top of one of the Great Pyramid of Giza here. There you will find links to the Mail Online (British) and English Russia.

I suppose I never wished to climb the Great Pyramid, but I had two men with me in 1978 who wanted to do so. In the photo below you might be able to make out two men (Jim Puterbaugh and Bob Lyman) to the right of the marker showing the original height of the structure. Click on the photo for a larger image.

Two climbers on top of the Great Pyramid in 1978. Photo by Ferrell Jenkins.

Two climbers on top of the Great Pyramid in 1978. Photo by Ferrell Jenkins.

The Great Pyramid of Cheops (or Khufu) was constructed about 2500 B.C. No, not by the Israelites. That is even earlier than the biblical Patriarchs. It is said to contain more than 2,300,000 blocks of stone, each weighing an average of 2½ tons. The height was originally 479 feet, but now is 449½ feet.

It is April 1, but this is no joke.

Jerusalem Panorama

Look at this great high resolution panorama of Jerusalem from the Mount of Olives here. Spend some time with it. (HT: Bible Places Blog.)

Locusts video from Israel

Recently we mentioned the plague of locusts that devastated crops in Egypt. The southern portion of Israel might have been affected except for the effective use of pesticides.

When Joel Kramer, Executive Director of SourceFlix, learned that the locusts were in the southern part of Israel he drove from Jerusalem through the Negev and wilderness to photograph the locusts near the Egyptian border. He shares this with us in a high quality video here.

Joel includes wording from the book of Exodus 10 to remind us of the biblical plague of locusts in the time of Moses.

The writer of Proverbs describes the locusts this way:

 the locusts have no king, yet all of them march in rank; (Proverbs 30:27 ESV)

In studying the book of Revelation, I am impressed at the way in which locust plagues, which were (and still are) common in the Middle East, are used in the sounding of the fifth trumpet (Revelation 9:1-11). The comparison between the locusts and a literal army in their movement and damage is impressive.

 In appearance the locusts were like horses prepared for battle: on their heads were what looked like crowns of gold; their faces were like human faces,
8 their hair like women’s hair, and their teeth like lions’ teeth;
9 they had breastplates like breastplates of iron, and the noise of their wings was like the noise of many chariots with horses rushing into battle.
10 They have tails and stings like scorpions, and their power to hurt people for five months is in their tails. (Revelation 9:7-10 ESV)

HT: Bible Places Blog.

Locusts still plague the Bible lands

References to locusts in the Bible are scattered from the time when the Israelites were in Egyptian bondage to the book of Revelation. Several Hebrew terms are used to describe locusts, perhaps of different species, or because of the various stages through which the locusts grow.

The prophet Joel uses the illustration of a locust invasion upon the land.

What the cutting locust left, the swarming locust has eaten. What the swarming locust left, the hopping locust has eaten, and what the hopping locust left, the destroying locust has eaten. (Joel 1:4 ESV)

Was he speaking of literal locusts, or of the invasion of a foreign enemy?

The prophet Amos speaks of the punishments brought by the LORD upon the northern kingdom of Israel prior to the Assyrian invasion.

“I struck you with blight and mildew; your many gardens and your vineyards, your fig trees and your olive trees the locust devoured; yet you did not return to me,” declares the LORD. (Amos 4:9 ESV)

Notice that Amos makes specific reference to the fig trees and the olive trees. We have examples of this same thing happening during the 1915 locust plague. It was documented for National Geographic magazine by the photographs of Lewis Larson with a descriptive article by John D. Whiting. Here is a fig tree prior to the Locust plague.

Fig tree before the 1915 locust plague.

Fig tree before the 1915 locust plague.

And here is the way the same tree looked after the plague.

Fig tree after the 1915 locust plague.

Fig tree after the 1915 locust plague.

These two images are from the collection of 4,000 high-resolution photographs taken by resident photographers at the American Colony in Jerusalem from 1898 to the 1940s. The full set is available at Life in the Holy Land here. In addition to the photos in the collection, the photos are included in PowerPoint presentations. Descriptive information is included with many of them.

Several articles have appeared in the past week or so about a modern locust plague that affected Egypt and southern Israel. See here for Egypt. Some Jews, especially those from Yemen, gathered the photos [it was late; I meant locusts] for eating (see here). Some rabbis warned that the locusts may not be kosher (see here).

Just a reminder that some species of locusts were acceptable for the Israelites to eat.

Of them you may eat: the locust of any kind, the bald locust of any kind, the cricket of any kind, and the grasshopper of any kind. (Leviticus 11:22 ESV)

I know you can’t forget the diet of John the Baptist.

Now John wore a garment of camel’s hair and a leather belt around his waist, and his food was locusts and wild honey. (Matthew 3:4 ESV)

Seth Rodriquez provides more info about the 1915 plague here.