Is there anything wrong with bowing down upon the knees to get anything (fulfill a need, even a basic need as drink water is)(given that you can do it by avoiding the "bowing down upon your knees" position)?

So he brought down the people unto the water: and the Lord said unto Gideon, Every one that lappeth of the water with his tongue, as a dog lappeth, him shalt thou set by himself; likewise every one that boweth down upon his knees to drink. And the number of them that lapped, putting their hand to their mouth, were three hundred men: but all the rest of the people bowed down upon their knees to drink water. Judges 7:5-6

1 Answer 1


Rashi says that

those who kneeled were accustomed to kneel before idols.

כי הם לא ילכו עמך, שכך הם למודים לכרוע לפני עבודת גלולים:

The Radak has a similar view

כי הכורעים על ברכיהם לשתות היה סימן לאשר כרעו לבעל

and quotes a Medrash

that they might be instead be worshipping their reflections

ובמדרש אתה מוצא בימי גדעון שהיו עובדין לבבואה שלהם אותם שהיו כורעין על ברכיהן פירוש לצל שהיה נראה מהם על המים:

Hashem gave this test to Gideon which would indicate that these people should not be taken with him. It is not clear to me that this is a definite indication that bowing down upon your knees is always wrong.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .