Honeybees in Bible and Quran

By: Prof.dr. Ibrahim Khalil

One of the inherited doctrines of mankind is that the Quran is quoted or borrowed from the Bible.

In this series of articles, I will try to explore this Dogma on scientific basis to show up that it is forged.

In the present topic of Honeybees, one may ask this: Is the Quran quoted from the Bible? And which book look good with sciences? The book which talks about the bees that lived in a cadaver of a lion or the bees that produce healing products?

Before dealing with the topic of the Honeybees in Quran versus Bible versus sciences, it is mandatory to give some statistical hints.

The total words in the Bible are 788,280 while total words in the Quran are 77,473. It follows that, the Bible is more than 10 times the Quran word-wise. In other words, the Bible has the potential of more than 10 times than the Quran to exhibit its topics.

Back to the bees, they are mentioned four times in the Bible and once in the Quran.

Bees in the Bible

Danger of their attacks

The Bible is talking about the danger of the attacks by bees

Deuteronomy 1:44

"And the Amorites who dwelt in that mountain came out against you and chased you as bees do, and drove you back from Seir to Hormah."

Psalm 118:12

"They surrounded me like bees; They were quenched like a fire of thorns; For in the name of the LORD I will destroy them."

Could bees live in a cadaver?

It is something very interesting to know that the Bible says that the bees established their colonies inside a cadaver of a lion and made honey.

Judges 14:8

"After some time, when he returned to get her, he turned aside to see the carcass of the lion. And behold, a swarm of bees and honey were in the carcass of the lion."

As far as I know, bees NEVER do that and never make their colonies inside a cadaver of any animal. We know that bees are very clean and can not live inside a putrefied cadaver.



Bees are they symbol of enemies?

Isaiah 7:18

In that day the LORD will whistle for flies from the distant streams of Egypt and for bees from the land of Assyria.

According to the Biblical commentaries and dictionary,

It is said that, In Isaiah 7:18 the "fly" and the "bee" are personifications of the Egyptians and Assyrians, the inveterate enemies of Israel.

It means that the Bible uses the bees as a symbol of enemies.

Bees in the Quran

It is interesting that the Surah (or chapter) No. 16 called the "The Honeybee" while there is no chapter in the Bible that is called the Honeybee!

The Quran describes the functions of the FEMALE bees and their products.

"And your Lord revealed the FEMALE Honeybee; build homes in mountains, and trees, and in the hives people built for you.

16-The Honeybee, then to eat of all the produce and fruits (of the earth), and find with skill the spacious paths of its Lord: there issues from within their bodies a fluid of varying colors (and tastes and characters), wherein is healing for men: verily in this is a Sign for those who are thinking".

Surah 16:68-69

In describing the activities of the honeybee, the Quran uses the feminine gender.

It is known that in Arabic, verbs are conjugated according to gender. The use in the Quran of the feminine gender in conjugation shows that the acts were done by the female bee. To address the honeybee in the verse with the addition of the adjective "female" before the honeybee would be miraculous.



The following functions are performed by female bees as described in the Quran:

1- Building of hive

2- Collecting of nectar, new material for production of bee products

3- Making the bee products

4- These bee products have different colors, tastes and characters.

5- These bee products have

At the time of the revelation of the Quran, Arabs did not know the details of the distribution of work among the bees living in a hive; they would not recognize that those actively working in the hive were females. They had no idea about the function of producing honey and collecting nectar from fruits belonged to female bees. They had no idea about the bee products.

Therefore, it is interesting, without a doubt, that in listing the duties of bees, the Quran used the mode of conjugation in the Arabic intended for the female gender. Not only that but I may admit that the Quran is the first book on earth which talks about the bee products that include liquids of different colors, tastes and characters and have healing effects.

The subject of healing effects of bee products will be discussed later on.

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