Insect eaten in Palestine (Lev. 11: 21; Mark 1: 6) and considered very nutritious. A plague of locusts could utterly destroy a harvest, and as such they were sent against Egypt as punishment for refusing to release the Israelites from slavery (Exod. 10: 12–20), and against the Israelites themselves for disobedience (Deut. 28: 42), and are regarded as heralding the day of the Lord (Joel 1: 1–20; 2: 1–17). The prophet challenges the nation to repent.