When we spread honey on our bread, cereal or pour it on our tea using it as a sweetener, do we realise that we are consuming the nectar of sweet flowers?
The bee, that small flying creature that can hurt us with a painful sting, is the one that gathers that floral juice or nectar and takes it to its hive. The worker bee has a small pouch for the honey which “is not too different from the crops of birds”. In it, the bee takes the nectar of the flowers to its hive.
Beloved, while the floral juice remains in this little pouch, it thickens and becomes that delicious thing that we call honey. The bee deposits it in the honeycomb, ready to be eaten.
In the past, it was thought that the chemistry of the bee did not interact with the honey while it was stored and transported in that little pouch. But later it has been proven that the bee secretes certain enzymes that alter the floral nectar as it takes it to the hive. But contrary to other animals (sheep, cows, goats, camels, cats, raccoons, etc.) that produce milk after digesting and processing their food, the bee never gets to digest the honey.
What does all this have to do with honey being biblically clean or not?
In accordance to a certain part of the Scriptures, some think that the bee is an insect that apparently does not fit in the proper definition given by Yahweh in His Word of what is biblically clean.
To be sure the rabbis discussed this question in the Talmud (, and maybe they started the controversy!
The Rabbinic Mishnah declares:
If the bee is not kosher then, why are there apparent cases in the Scriptures in which honey from the bee is permitted?
Let us examine the Scriptures, against what the rabbis say and what we think through our logic, to see who is right in all this:
Leviticus 11:20 20 “All flying insects that creep on all fours is an abomination to you. 21 Only, these you do eat of every flying insect that creeps on all fours: those which have jointed legs above their feet with which to leap on the earth . 22 These of them you do eat: the locust after its kind, and the destroying locust after its kind, and the cricket after its kind, and the grasshopper after its kind. 23 But all other flying insects which have four feet is an abomination to you. 24 And by these you are made unclean, anyone touching the carcass of any of them is unclean until evening, ”
Leviticus 11:21 21 “these you do eat of every flying insect that creeps on all fours: those which have jointed legs above their feet with which to leap on the earth.”
But to comply with everything that is written, we cannot rely on one part of one text. We have to examine ALL that is written. The first thing we have to consider is how many feet does the bee have and how does it walk with them? Because, beloved, the Scriptures say that <all other flying insects which have four feet is an abomination to you>.
The bee has wings but has six feet, and it DOES NOT WALK WITH FOUR of them, as the mosquito walks, it walks with all six!
Therefore, <all other flying insects which have four feet is an abomination to you> does not apply to the bee, because it walks on six feet.
Now it looks like the bee is not included in the NO-kosher insect list. Now it seems that the little bee is KOSHER!
Are the bee and HONEY, it’s product, kosher or not?
How can we be sure that Yahweh does not condemn its consumption? Is there any evidence in the Scriptures?
Certainly, beloved, there is more evidence. To reach sound doctrine on any matter, we have to look for the Truth <a little bit here and a little bit there>, as Scripture itself teaches us.
That way we will know if it is true or false that in «eretz» Israel (the land of Israel) the only honey that is consumed comes from figs or dates…
Now we will see, again with the holy Word of Yahweh itself, if there was bee honey in «eretz» Israel…
Proverbs 24:1 1 My son, eat honey, for it is good, And the honeycomb, sweet to your taste;
Proverbs 27:7 7 One satisfied loathes the honeycomb, But to a hungry one any bitter food is sweet…
Matthew 3:4 4“And Yoḥanan had a garment of camel’s hair, and a leather girdle around his waist. And his food was locusts and wild honey.”
Now, some servants of the enemy ha Satan use the following verse to claim that HONEY FROM BEES CAN NOT BE EATEN, knowing that it is not so and hiding vital information that is given in that same passage:
1 Samuel 14:26 26 And the people came into the woods and saw the honey, dripping (remember that it was the “land flowing with milk and honey”. But no one put his hand to his mouth, for the people feared the oath.
But, again, they are making an assumption. They are “making doctrine” with a portion of the passage, my beloved, and that is a sin. We have to consider all the evidence and see the whole CONTEXT, to see what is being said there and not fall into a trap.
Now we shall examine the verses that appear BEFORE and after and we will see that the people did not eat honey, but it wasn’t because it was not Biblically clean or because it was forbidden as a food!
1 Samuel 14:25 25“And all they of the land came into the woods, and there was honey on the ground.”
1 Samuel 14:24 24 And the men of Yisra’ĕl were distressed that day, for Sha’ul had placed the people under oath, saying, “Cursed be the man who eats food until evening, and I have taken revenge on my enemies.” Therefore none of the people tasted food.
It is very clear there. King Saul had made the people swear that they would fast that day. That was all! That is why they couldn’t eat the honey that they found!
Now let us look at evidence #6, to see that certainly there is honey in the Scriptures and it can be eaten.
Honey is an energetic food. We all know the story of Jonathan, the son of King Saul and a dear friend of Dawid and how he brought the tired Jewish armies to victory in their war against the Palestinians (Philistines). He was tired and dismayed after the arduous battle, then he found a beehive, took honey from it with the tip of his rod and ate <and his eyes lit up>, because his energy was restored.
1 Samuel 14:27 27 “But Yonathan had not heard that his father had taken an oath of the people, and he stretched out the end of the rod that was in his hand and dipped it in a honeycomb, and put his hand to his mouth. And his eyes lit up."
Judges 14:8-9 explains that Samson also ate honey. Here is one instance and this is:
Judges 14:8 8 And when he returned later to take her, he turned aside to look at the carcass of the lion, and saw a swarm of bees and honey in the carcass of the lion.
Judges14:9 9 And he took some of it in his hands and went along, eating. And he came to his father and mother, and gave them, and they ate. But he did not make known to them that he took the honey out of the carcass of the lion.
But my responsibility ends there. It ends with <he who has ears to hear, let him hear>…
2 Timothy 2:15 15 Do your utmost to present yourself approved to Elohim, a worker who does not need to be ashamed, rightly handling the Word of Truth.
Well, as if we haven’t read enough, here is more evidence numbers EIGHT, NINE, TEN, ELEVEN, TWELVE, etc. that prove beyond any doubt that certainly, BEE HONEY IS MENTIONED in the Scriptures and that its consumption IS NOT CONDEMNED BY YAHWEH.
Psalms 19:10 10“More desirable than gold, Than much fine gold; And sweeter than honey and the honeycomb.”
Psalms 119:103 103 How sweet to my taste has Your word been, More than honey to my mouth!
Proverbs 16:24 24 Pleasant words are like a honeycomb, Sweet to the being, and healing to the bones.
Proverbs 25:16 16 Have you found honey? Eat only as much as you need, Lest you be satisfied with it and vomit.
Shir haShirim (Song of Songs) 4:11 11 Your lips, O my bride, drip as the honeycomb; Honey and milk are under your tongue. And the fragrance of your garments Is like the fragrance of Leḇanon.
Song of Songs 5:1 1...I have eaten my honeycomb with my honey...
Even incense could not have a single drop of honey due to that prohibition. The Torah doesn’t really explain why honey can not be offered at the altar but we argue that honey, the same as leaven, causes fermentation and is a symbol of the rebellious and proud nature of man which gets worse as the centuries go by.
The prohibition of honey and leaven is to remind us that Yahweh detests arrogance and vanity, but loves humility and self- discipline. Consequently, all the baked bread that was brought to the altar had no honey nor leaven. The only exception was the wheat loaves that were offered as First Fruits in the festival of Shavuot (Pentecost). These loaves were leavened. But they were not offered at the altar but given to the or priests.
Referring to the words of the Scriptures that the true Israelites of Yahweh (today under Yahshua) talk, study and obey, King Shlomo (Solomon) said :
Shir ha Shirim (Song of Songs) 4:11 11 milk and honey are under your tongue”
Revelation 10:10 10 And I took the little book out of the messenger’s hand and ate it, and it was as sweet as honey in my mouth, but when I had eaten it, my stomach was made bitter.
The Scriptures and the Commandments <are sweeter than honey and the honeycomb> said King David in Psalms 19:10.
Taken from a teaching byYhemaelh Zeev
Translated from Spanish by Nazarenes Notes
Copyright by Institute for Scripture Research.
Used by permission.