Whatsoever parteth the hoof, and is cloven footed
That is, whose hoof is parted and cloven quite through; for there are some creatures that have partitions in their feet, but not quite through, they are parted above, but underneath are joined together by a skin; wherefore both these phrases are used to describe the beasts lawful to be eaten: the Egyptians seem to have borrowed this law from the Jews, for Chaeremon says F24, that they abstain from such four footed beasts that have only one hoof, or have many partitions, or have no horns: and so the Targum of Jonathan adds here,
``which have horns,''which, though not in the text, agrees well with the creatures allowed by this law to be eaten, see ( Deuteronomy 14:4 Deuteronomy 14:5 ) for such are all horned cattle; nor are there any cattle horned forbid to be eaten:
and cheweth the cud among the beasts, that shall ye eat:
who having no upper teeth cannot thoroughly chew their food at once, and therefore bring it up again out of their stomachs into their mouths and chew it over again, that it may be better prepared for digestion in the stomach, and so yield better nourishment; and this makes the flesh of such creatures fitter for food: and these creatures have more stomachs than one; the ventricles for rumination are four; the first is the paunch, which in oxen is so big as to hold food of fifty pound weight, the second the honeycomb, the third the tripe, the fourth the honey tripe, and to which are helpful the pectoral muscle, the abdomen, with the diaphragm F25: all this might have a moral and spiritual meaning in it, and may be applied either to ministers of the word; who ought rightly to divide the word of truth, and give to everyone their part, and who should walk uprightly according to it, and who should give themselves up wholly to the meditation of it, and thoroughly digest it; and study to show themselves workmen, that need not to be ashamed; or to private Christians, who have a discerning spirit in spiritual things, and can distinguish not only morality from immorality, but spiritual things from carnal, heavenly things from earthly, the voice of Christ from the voice of a stranger, and the doctrines of Christ from the doctrines of men; and who also walk as they should do, by faith on Christ, in the ways of God, and according to the Gospel; these chew the cud, meditate on the word, feed upon it while delivered, recall it, and have it brought to their remembrance by the divine Spirit, and ponder it in their hearts; see ( Psalms 1:1 Psalms 1:2 ) .
F24 Apud Porphyr. de Abstinentia, l. 4. sect. 7.
F25 Scheuchzer. Physic. Sacr. vol. 2. p. 278, 279.