Moths in The Bible

The Bible references moths throughout many of its books, where the moths represent a range of different concepts. The verses tend to focus on the moth’s physical impact on society, often likening a moth to destruction and despair.

We’ve put together a compilation of key reference to moths in the Bible, categorised by the symbolism in each.

Decay

In the New Testament, the Book of Matthew (6:19) states:

“Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon the earth, where moth and rust doth consume, and where thieves break through and steal”

The verse as a whole is a plea for us not to live with a focus on wealth and possessions, as in time these won’t amount for a great deal. The rust will erode possessions, as the moth will to garments.

We should all focus on being good to others and less on personal success.

Destruction

Through numerous verses in the Bible, moths are referenced as a destroyer of clothing. Here’s an example from the Old Testament (Isaiah 50:9)

“Who is Behold, the Lord GOD will help me; who is he that shall condemn me? lo, they all shall wax old as a garment; the moth shall eat them up.”

Clothes were a clear representation of prosperity in Biblical times, with this verse again highlighting the futility of focusing on material goods. It is another reminder of our little time on this planet, and urges us to make the most of it.

This is a common theme throughout the Old Testament in particular. Here’s a verse from King James (5:1-2):

“Go to now, ye rich men, weep and howl for your miseries that shall come upon you.

Your riches are corrupted, and your garments are motheaten.”

Have you come across any additional verses of moth symbols in the Bible? Comment below and we’ll look in to them!

Infographic: What Did That Moth Mean?

To give our readers a quick visual idea of what a recent appearance could relate to, we’ve put together a super quick infographic that details 6 of the most common concepts moths represent.

 

moth meanings infographic

 

Looking for a bit more depth on any of these concepts? Our in-depth guide to moth symbolism will ensure that you’ve got more clarity on what is going on. In case you’re wondering, here are the questions we commonly deal with around this infographic.

 

How does this differ between moth species?

The majority of symbolic meanings surrounding moths transcend species, although there are some exceptions. One of these is the luna moth, whose unique characteristics mean it’s often treated with differing connotations.

 

Does the color of the moth matter?

Somewhat, as colors attract different interpretations from a spiritual perspective. We recommend reviewing our guide on white moths to get a feel for the impact color plays in any encounter.

 

Is killing a moth bad luck?

This has been touched on in several of our guides, and it often a topic of debate when the situation presents itself to us. From a superstitious perspective, it is very much considered bad luck to kill a moth, namely because they are said to carry to soul of an important person in our life. Killing a moth is also associated with death and incurable sickness.

 

In saying this, I recently killed a moth unintentionally that was lurking in my wardrobe. Touch wood it doesn’t bring me harm!

White Moth Symbolism

Although many of our moth symbolism is of positive connotations, there are considerably less optimistic meanings to encounters with a white moth.

Not for the faint-hearted, it is very difficult to find a white moth that expresses anything less than a negative. At least from a symbolic perspective! If you’ve seen a white moth, here’s a few thoughts into what it symbolises.

The White Moth Symbolises Death

I warned you that this wasn’t for the faint hearted!

Across a range of different cultures,  most notably Latin culture, the presence of a moth in a room of your house could represent the immenent death of a loved one.

This is also in many cultures to represent incurable illness. As a result of this, it is dealt with great stress and apprehension to be in the presence of a white moth.

White Moth Symbolism and Souls

In Asian cultures, we often hear of the white moth representing the soul of a loved one. The owner of the soul varies between traditions however, with the Japanese believing it to be the soul of a living being. Conversely, ancient Chinese texts have stated the white moth symbolised a deceased soul.

This is not exclusive to Asian Culture though. Jamaicans consider the white moth to be a soul that is disrupted and not at rest. They believe this lost soul presents itself to say one final goodbye.

Purity

The colour white is synonymous with purity across almost all cultures. In this same vain white moths are often considered to symbolise purity, truth and cleanliness.

Superstitions individuals often combine this symbolism to consider white moths to represent a pure, cleansed soul. In this sense it is considered a blessing.

 

Ill Wishes

White moths are believed to pervay individuals with unrequited misfortune and ill wishes. The white moth is one of the most commonly referenced symbols when dream readers mention signs of bad luck and ill omens.

 

As they are also considered the souls of loved ones, it is considered very bad luck to kill a white moth, as it is with any moth that you encounter.

 

Do you have anything to add to our list of white moth symbolism? Comment below and we’ll see what we can find for you.