Studies on Left-handedness in the Hebrew Bible

Dr. Claude Mariottini - Professor of Old Testament

the-left-handed-painter-1982 Carlo Maria Mariani

Image: The Left Handed Painter

Artist: Carlo Maria Mariani

According to a recent study, about 10% of the population of the US are left-handed. In addition, about 1% of the population is mixed-handed, that is they are ambidextrous. Ambidextrous people are able to use both hands to do things such as writing or drawing.

In the Old Testament the warriors from the tribe of Benjamin favored their left hand in training for combat. There are several references in the Hebrew Bible to people who were left-handed or could use both hands.

The Bible says that Ehud, a judge in Israel was left-handed (Judges 3:15). In the army of the tribe of Benjamin, the best seven hundred soldiers were all left-handed (Judges 20:16). In David’s army, some of his soldiers were Benjaminites. These mighty men of war were ambidextrous. They served as archers who could shoot arrows and sling stones with…

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