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In Deuteronomy 22:9 (NASB)

“You shall not sow your vineyard with two kinds of seed, otherwise all the produce of the seed which you have sown and the yield of the vineyard will be forfeited to the sanctuary.

While this might prompt to think it only applies to vines, in Leviticus 19:19 (NASB)

‘You are to keep My statutes. You shall not cross-breed two kinds of your cattle; you shall not sow your field with two kinds of seed, nor wear a garment of two kinds of material mixed together.

it seems as if the prohibition is with the creation of hybrids in biology overall. Checking existing hybrid plants, curious to find there figs which appear regularly in Scripture and were used, for instance, in cakes as we read in 1 Samuel 30:12 (NASB)

They also gave him a slice of fig cake and two cakes of raisins, and he ate; then his spirit revived. (...)

Is the creation of certain hybrids ok?

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  • There is a relevant question asked in Mi Yodeya, but I don't think there is a similar question here in Biblical Hermeneutics. Perhaps we should hold fire and see what reaction this question gets?
    – Lesley
    Mar 7 '21 at 13:23
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+50

Jesus didn't have any problem with a fig tree growing in a vineyard:

Luke 13:6

Then he told this parable: "A man had a fig tree growing in his vineyard, and he went to look for fruit on it but did not find any.

There is no need to generalize the laws in Deuteronomy 22:9 and Leviticus 19:19.

A mule is an offspring of a male donkey (jack) and a female horse (mare). Yet David used it royally.

1 Kings 1:32 King David said, “Call in Zadok the priest, Nathan the prophet and Benaiah son of Jehoiada.” When they came before the king, 33he said to them: “Take your lord’s servants with you and have Solomon my son mount my own mule and take him down to Gihon. 34There have Zadok the priest and Nathan the prophet anoint him king over Israel.

Gregor Johann Mendel was an Augustinian friar and abbot. He started modern genetics by crossbreeding pea plants.

Does the Law prohibit all farming with hybrid cultivars?

I think that would be an over-generalization.

Is the creation of certain hybrids ok?

Zadok, Nathan, Benaiah, David, and Solomon didn't think it wrong to use a mule for the coronation ceremony.

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  • Interesting side too: even though intermarriage was seen as something which might lead to idolatry, in the case of Ruth it resulted in a Moabite woman worshiping God. Mar 21 '21 at 9:19
  • 1
    Yes, indeed and Ruth became an ancestor of Jesus.
    – Tony Chan
    Mar 21 '21 at 13:07
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This question actually addresses a very important point. To fully address this point would take more space than answers allow, so I will only outline the answer ...

It starts with seeds.

GEN 1:29 And God said, “See, I have given you every herb that yields seed which is on the face of all the earth, and every tree whose fruit yields seed; to you it shall be for food.

The ‘seed’ is the primary element for physical life. In fact, for everything. Everything on this earth originates from a seed. Everything!

But note the number of times God said that life reproduces ‘according to its kind’. This was Gods design.

Since creation, God has not [needed to] created a single additional thing. He didn’t need to create some more fruit trees because more people came along, nor did he [need to] create more people. All because of seed. Seed is crucial - which is why the principle of sowing and reaping is important to understand. And, the concept of ‘seeds’ will be in effect as long as the earth exists - because it ‘runs/drives’ the earth.

But, for the ‘earth/life’ to ‘run’ by design, as intended, in some respects ‘righteously’, seed should notbe mixed. Everything should remain within its ‘own kind’.

GEN 8:22 ”While the earth remains, Seedtime and harvest, Cold and heat, Winter and summer, And day and night Shall not cease.”

Now, if you start mixing ‘seeds’, you start no longer producing after your own kind, you then start getting mixture. That was the issue here ...

GEN 6:4 There were giants on the earth in those days, and also afterward, when the sons of God came in to the daughters of men and they bore children to them.

We learn this from the non-canonical book Enoch 1. Although non-canonical, the Jews at the time of Jesus were all familiar with the content of this book. Fragments have been found amongst the Dead Sea findings, and both Peter and James quote from it. Enoch 1 talks about ‘seed mixing’, genetically modifying both plant and animal. That’s where the ‘unclean’ animals originate - genetically mixing different ‘kinds’.

So the result of mixing seed is unclean. And we know Gods reaction to anything unclean by scripture. For example, Jews were forbidden to eat anything unclean. Some argue that the reason for the flood was to deal with genetically modified ‘hybrids’.

So, despite this only being an overview, the answer to your question “Is the creation of certain hybrids ok?” should be clear.

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