On Rabbits and Rumination – Answering-Islam’s Incompetence

I challenged the Christian apologist “Orangehunter” (from Allan Ruhl’s blog) to comment on the scientific errors in the Bible, and used the example of Leviticus 11:6, which claims that rabbits “chew the cud”.  The act of “chewing the cud” refers to rumination.  I discussed why this is a scientific error in my article “Science in the Bible and the Quran: Searching the Holy Texts for Evidence of Scientific Knowledge” (see the link below).  “Orangehunter” responded (eventually) by posting a link to the infamous “Answering-Islam” website, claiming that it clarified the issue.  Upon reading the relevant section, I immediately discovered an error in the article, which only goes to show the incompetence of the AI pseudoscholars.  The part of the article (see the link below) which not only exposes AI but also the Bible is the following:

“[r]abbits go through a process called refection wherein they take their dung and chew on it in order to get at the remaining partially digested food. In this way, rabbits are able to get the most nutrients possible from the food they digest.”

So, according to AI, rabbits “chew” their “dung”, a process called refection.  The problem is that this statement is only partially correct, and thus partially incorrect.  While rabbits do engage in refection (also called caecotrophy), they do not “chew” the dung (more appropriately called “caecotrophes”).  As stated in the book “Nutrition of the Rabbit” under the chapter “Feeding Behaviour in Rabbits” (for the full citation, see my article):

“[h]ard pellets are voided, but soft pellets are recovered by the rabbit directly upon being expelled from the anus. To do this the rabbit twists itself around, sucks in the soft faeces as they emerge from the anus and then swallows without chewing them.”

I had actually already pointed this out in my original article, which was published a few years ago.  Had “Orangehunter” bothered to read it (perhaps he was scared to), he wouldn’t have made this blunder by appealing to the discredited work of “Answering-Islam”.  So, the conclusion is still the same.  The Bible erroneously refers to rabbits as animals that “chew the cud”.  Even if we could forgive the confusion between actual rumination and refection, the Bible still falsely claims that a rabbit “chews” the cud.  It simply does not.  And Allah (Glorified and Exalted be He) knows best.  

Links:

https://quranandbibleblog.wordpress.com/2014/03/08/science-in-the-bible-and-the-quran/

http://allanruhl.com/refuting-faiz-on-surah-616/#comment-2026

https://answering-islam.org/Responses/Shabir-Ally/favorites.htm#lev11_6

9 thoughts on “On Rabbits and Rumination – Answering-Islam’s Incompetence

  1. stewjo004

    So I don’t much biology and I’m trying to make sure I and everyone at home understand in laymen’s terms:

    Chewing the cud- Animal eats food, throws up a portion to chew on it swallows again

    Rabbits- Rabbits don’t throw up anything; they let it go all the way through, and then turns around like the human centipede and eats it waste again.

    Is that about right? Also found a video explaining the process

    Liked by 1 person

      1. stewjo004

        Whelp it gets worse. Christian commentators admit its wrong: Apparently, the ‘inspired’ writers thought that when rabbits make that chewing motion that they chew the cud. All links can be found here:
        https://biblehub.com/commentaries/leviticus/11-6.htm

        Barnes’ Notes on the Bible (Also they note the Bible wrongly classifies a whale as a fish)
        the guinea-pig, and some other rodents, of moving its jaws when it is at rest as if it were masticating. The rodents were familiarly spoken of as ruminating animals, just as the bat was reckoned among birds because it flies (see Leviticus 11:19), and as whales and their congeners are spoken of as fish, when there is no occasion for scientific accuracy.

        Ellicott’s Commentary for English Readers
        Like the rabbit, or the hyrax, the hare has not the peculiar stomach of the true ruminant; but, like the rabbit, the hare, when sitting at rest, so moves its jaws that it appears to masticate

        Pulpit Commentary
        There is little doubt that the same animal as our hare is meant. Neither the hare, however, nor the hyrax chews the cud in the strict sense of the words. But they have the appearance of doing so.

        Cambridge
        The coney (rock-badger) and hare move their jaws like beasts which chew the cud, but are not ruminating animals. Here, as in other passages of the Bible, the language is popular, rather than scientific.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. stewjo004

    @ QB
    Lol no.

    I simply posted the important part they very much tried to explain the “wisdom” behind the Jews saying Allah described His creation wrong. From the same link:

    Pulpit Commentary
    ..The rule respecting chewing the cud was given to and by Moses as a legislator, not as an anatomist, to serve as a sign by which animals might be known to be clean for food. Phenomenal not scientific language is used here, as in Joshua 10:12, “as we might speak of whales and their congeners as fish, when there is no need of scientific accuracy” (Clark). “All these marks of distinction in the Levitical law are wisely and even necessarily made on the basis of popular observation and belief, not on that of anatomical exactness. Otherwise the people would have been continually liable to error. Scientifically, the camel would be said to divide the hoof, and the hare does not chew the cud. But laws for popular use must necessarily employ terms as they are popularly understood. These matters are often referred to as scientific errors; whereas they were simply descriptions, necessarily popular, for the understanding and enforcement of the law” (Gardiner).

    Ellicott’s Commentary for English Readers
    …As the object of the legislator was to furnish the people with marks by which they were to distinguish the clean from the unclean animals, he necessarily adopted those which were in common vogue, and which alone were intelligible in those days.

    Or my personal favorite:

    Gill’s Exposition of the Entire Bible
    (The “hare” is this verse may be an animal that is now is extinct but was alive at the time of Moses.

    P.S.
    You should have named this piece:

    Chew on this: Rabbits and Rumination- Answering-Islam’s Incompetence

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Pingback: On Rabbits and Rumination: A Response to Christian Interpretations of Leviticus 11:5-6 – The Quran and Bible Blog

  4. Pingback: On Rabbits and Rumination: A Response to Christian Interpretations of Leviticus 11:5-6 – Blogging Theology

  5. Pingback: Is the Torah like the Qur’an, or is it not? – The Quran and Bible Blog

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