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The menacing locusts: Here’s what the Bible and the Quran say about them

Even in the Biblical era, locusts were wreaking havoc

May 27, 2020 / 03:42 PM IST

Yes, locusts find a mention in the holy books. The Old Testament of the Bible and Quran, the holy books of two of the most followed religions on Earth, have described and referred to locusts as menacing and strong creatures that bring misery to those facing its wrath.

While the Quran has only two mentions of the insect, Bible has as many as 36 references.

In the Quran, Verse 133 of Chapter 7 says:

So We let loose upon them the flood, and the locusts, and the lice, and the frogs, and blood—all explicit signs — but they were too arrogant. They were a sinful people.

Also Read: What are locusts and how are they harmful? Here’s everything you need to know

Verse 7 of Chapter 54 in the Quran says:

Their eyes humiliated, they will emerge from the graves, as if they were swarming locusts.

While the Quran has little to say about the menacing insects, the Old Testament of the Bible, on the other hand, takes things a notch higher.

For instance, The Book of Nahum, Chapter 3, Verse 15 says,

There the fire will consume you; the sword will cut you down — they will devour you like a swarm of locusts. Multiply like grasshoppers, multiply like locusts!

Nahum 3:16 goes on to say,

You have increased the number of your merchants. Till they are more numerous than the stars in the sky, but like locusts they strip the land and then fly away.

The Book of Exodus, Chapter 10, Verse 4 says,

If you refuse to let them go, I will bring locusts into your country tomorrow.

Exodus 10:12 says,

And the Lord said to Moses, “Stretch out your hand over Egypt so that locusts swarm over the land and devour everything growing in the fields, everything left by the hail.”

The Book of Deutronomy, Chapter 28, Verse 38 says,

You will sow much seed in the field but you will harvest little, because locusts will devour it.

Deutronomy 28:42 says,

Swarms of locusts will take over all your trees and the crops of your land.

This, in fact, establishes that locusts have been known to wreak havoc since a very long time.

In the present day, the invasion area of desert locusts covers about 30 million sq km, which includes whole or parts of nearly 64 countries. This includes countries like Northwest and East African countries, Arabian Peninsula, the Southern Republic of erstwhile USSR, Iran, Afghanistan, the Indian sub-continent.

As of May 26 in India, locusts have already wiped out more than 5,00,000 hectares of crops in Rajasthan – the worst-affected state as per the ministry. Gujarat too has been battling locust infestation for more than five months now.

In Madhya Pradesh, locust swarms have been spotted in 16 of its 52 districts. In Uttar Pradesh, Jhansi, Agra, and Noida districts have reported locust sightings.
Moneycontrol News
first published: May 27, 2020 01:02 pm