Leviticus 19 (Part Four)
“Ye shall keep my statutes. Thou shalt not let thy cattle gender with a diverse kind: thou shalt not sow thy field with mingled seed: neither shall a garment mingled of linen and woollen come upon thee.”
Leviticus 19:19 KJV
“And the owl, and the night hawk, and the cuckow, and the hawk after his kind,”
Leviticus 11:16 KJV
What about horses and donkeys?
A mule is the offspring of a male donkey (jack) and a female horse (mare). Horses and donkeys are different species, with different numbers of chromosomes. Of the two first generation hybrids between these two species, a mule is easier to obtain than a hinny, which is the offspring of a female donkey (jenny) and a male horse (stallion).
The different structure and number usually prevents the chromosomes from pairing up properly and creating successful embryos, rendering most mules infertile; so God gets the last word.
King David had a mule:
“So Zadok the priest, and Nathan the prophet, and Benaiah the son of Jehoiada, and the Cherethites, and the Pelethites, went down, and caused Solomon to ride upon king David's mule, and brought him to Gihon.”
1 Kings 1:38 KJV
These hybrids were either the issue of parents voluntarily coming together without the aid of the Israelites, or were imported from other countries. This law is binding upon the Jews to this day in every country where they happen to live, whether in Palestine or out of it.
“And all the earth sought to Solomon, to hear his wisdom, which God had put in his heart. And they brought every man his present, vessels of silver, and vessels of gold, and garments, and armour, and spices, horses, and mules, a rate year by year.”
1 Kings 10:24-25 KJV
The Holy God has made everything “after its kind” (Genesis 1:11-12; Genesis 1:21; Genesis 1:24-25), and has thus established a physical distinction in the order of His creation. For man to bring about a union of dissimilar things is to bring about a dissolution of the Divine laws and to act contrary to the ordinances of Him who is holy, and to whose holiness we are to attain.
Horses, donkeys, and zebras are a kind.
“And God said, Let the earth bring forth grass, the herb yielding seed, and the fruit tree yielding fruit after his kind, whose seed is in itself, upon the earth: and it was so.”
Genesis 1:11 KJV
That is, the following ordinances, which though not of the same high moral nature as the precepts laid down in the preceding verses, are yet necessary to attain to holiness. The Holy God has made everything “after its kind” (Gen. 1:11-12; 1:21; 1:24-25). And has thus established a physical distinction in the order of His creation. For man to bring about a union of dissimilar things is to bring about a dissolution of the Divine laws and to act contrary to the ordinances of Him who is holy, and to whose holiness we are to attain.
"Cattle gender with a diverse kind": Such co-mixtures would not only contravene the Divine order of things, but would lessen the abhorrence of the crime prohibited in (Lev. 18:22-23). The use, however, of animals produced from such mixtures was not forbidden. Hence we find that mules were largely employed by the Jews (2 Sam. 13:29; 18:9; 1 Kings 1:33; 1:38; 10:25; 18:5; Ezra 2:66). These hybrids were either the issue of parents voluntarily coming together without the aid of the Israelites, or were imported from other countries. This law is binding upon the Jews to this day in every country where they happen to live, whether in Palestine or out of it.
Thou shalt not let thy cattle gender with a diverse kind": This was prohibited, partly, to restrain the curiosity and boldness of men, who might attempt to amend or change the works of God. Partly, that by the restraints here laid even upon brute creatures’, that men might be taught to abhor all unnatural and unlawful lusts. Partly, to teach the Israelites to avoid mixtures with other nations, either in marriage or in religion. Which also may be signified by the following prohibitions. See of this and the next (Deut. 22:9-11). These mixtures may have been characteristic of some idolatrous practices.
"A garment mingled of linen and woollen": Although this precept, like the other two with which it is associated, was in all probability designed to root out some superstition, it seems to have had a further meaning. The law, it is to be observed, did not prohibit the Israelites wearing many different kinds of cloths together, but only the two specified. And the observations and researches of modern science have proved that "wool, when combined with linen, increases its power of passing off the electricity from the body. In hot climates, it brings on malignant fevers and exhausts the strength. And when passing off from the body, it meets with the heated air, inflames and excoriates like a blister" (see Ezek. 44:17-18).
God does not say you can keep my statutes if you want to.
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