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INSECTS ON THE ARK?

Sometimes my imagination probably carries me too far—into galaxies, perhaps near the orbit of Star Wars or the Milky Way. Therefore, what follows is “far out.”

 

It started out this way: I was doing some “research” on insects and turned to Wikipedia for a definition. I read that “Insects are hexapod invertebrates and are the largest group within the arthropod phylum. Insects have a chitinous exoskeleton, a three-part body, three pairs of jointed legs, compound eyes, and a pair of antennae.” 

 

It sounded convincing, but I don’t have an entomology degree, so I needed more help. I wondered if cockroaches and mosquitoes were insects and on Noah’s Ark. A little more searching on Wikipedia told me that “A cockroach is both an animal and an insect. In the classification of living organisms, animals are a kingdom, and insects are a class within the phylum Arthropoda. Cockroaches belong to the class Insecta, making them insects, and they are also part of the animal kingdom.” But, of course, Noah didn’t know that.

 

I was becoming more confused: If insects really were animals, could they have gone on Noah’s ark, two by two? Such insect pairings would need to include many that are nuisances, like mosquitoes and flies, stinging bees, leeches, and termites. But mosquitoes flying in “pairs”? Those I have seen and experienced were in “swarms” and never flew in any fixed rank.

 

Furthermore, I speculated, what about leeches? I have had them crawl up my legs when traversing muddy trails in Papua New Guinea, and they sucked blood out of me. If Noah let them on the Arc, I can tell he never hiked on muddy trails.

 

Continuing my “research,” I read that leeches may be animals (and therefore on the Ark?). Here was my Wikipedia source again: “Leeches are segmented parasitic or predatory worms that comprise the subclass Hirudinea within the phylum Annelida. They are closely related to the oligochaetes, which include the earthworm, and like them have soft, muscular segmented bodies that can lengthen and contract.” But, and again, Noah didn’t know that.

 

Now the worm was turning, but of course, I don’t know what Noah was told! If he let worms get on the Ark, there would be termites. Imagine the fun they would have at sea in a boat made of wood. Perhaps the tar would have stopped them from eating up their home.

 

Before I go much further down this rabbit trail (no animal pun intended), I was encouraged to read that “insects may be defined separately from most land animals in the Hebrew language. Consequently, there are arguments on both sides as to whether insects were of the kinds that were to be taken onto the Ark.” (See this link for details.) The argument seems inconclusive: “Insects, however, may be defined separately from most land animals in the Hebrew language. Consequently, there are arguments on both sides as to whether insects were of the kinds that were to be taken onto the Ark.”

 

I’m for the far side that keeps insects off the Ark. If Noah let them on the Ark, I foresaw problems.

 

Perhaps Ham and Shem stood at the entrance to the ark and slyly kicked the cockroaches, snails, slugs, and other undesirables into the sea. It might have helped so that insect churches and denominations would not congregate over the issue. I could readily imagine that if insects were allowed on the Ark, it would cause theological confusion.

 

Think, for example, of allowing bees on the Ark, like honeybees. Honeybees seem to be productive, although they have a Queen instead of a King, and there are some that are simply drones. Remember, they are to go into the Ark in pairs. A King and a Queen? Not a chance, according to some complementarian beekeepers. Two drones? What would be the point? And a Queen and a drone paired? No, the Queen would want many drones and, if there was only one, they would fight to see which one was paired with her.

 

There was an additional problem that appeared in my vision. Honeybees in the same Ark with Bumble bees? Each has different colors and the stripes on Bumbles are broader than those on the Honie’s. The bees would quarrel, and Noah would have to build some beehives. Inhabitants might put up signs on the hives like, “Heaven is found in Honey” and “Beat the buzz.” Then, suppose the Honeybees wanted a steeple on their hive and the Bumble bees wanted a campus church. This would cause more jealousy and strife, perhaps an all-out bee war. Beeware Noah!

 

However, I dreamed “Insects on the Ark” might make a good movie. Giant leeches trying to suck the blood out of kangaroos and mosquitoes buzzing around giant horned frogs. Seasick goats and Noah running out of food for the lizards. Very annoying scenes could easily follow, and it could therefore be a first-rate horror movie. 

 

All I need now is some popcorn and a Zero Pepsi.

 

Karl Franklin

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