Monday, August 29, 2011

Does Scripture teach us to eat kosher? (Part 1)

Eating Kosher is one of the most contested issues amongst the Christians and the TRUE Believers in the Mashiyach! The Christian teachers teach that, only “God” can change his own “Laws” and that He changed the dietary law so that we are now able to eat any the things that were previously abominable to Him and us.

But do the Scriptures really teach us this? Or should we still be eating kosher (kosher means acceptable) food only? Let us look at some of the arguments that the Church uses to justify their false teaching of eating abominable unclean animals.

Firstly, the Church uses Acts 10 to justify the eating of unclean animals. If one reads this passage of Scripture, then you will see that it is clearly not speaking of food. I am not going to go into this part of Scripture now as I have already covered it in a previous posting. You can read about it here in the articlecalled: Joel Osteen is a false teacher. 


Secondly,

You eat whatever is sold in the meat market, asking no questions because of conscience, for “The earth belongs to יהוה (YHWH), and all that fills it.”
And if any of the unbelievers invite you, and you wish to go, you eat whatever is set before you, asking no question on account of the conscience.
And if anyone says to you, “This was offered to idols,” do not eat it because of the one pointing it out to you, and on account of the conscience, for “The earth belongs to
יהוה (YHWH), and all that fills it.” (1 Corinthians 10:25-27). This piece of Scripture above is not talking about clean and unclean animals. It is speaking of ‘that which is offered to idols’. The Jewish people, like the author of this verse, do not consider any unclean animal to be food. Shaul never condoned the eating of unclean meats in these verses.

If the food (clean) was put in front of you that was offered to an idol by an unbeliever, you were to eat it only if they did not tell you that it was offered to an idol. If they did tell you, then you were not to eat it on account of the conscience of that unbeliever.

Rav Shaul is explaining how the food that was prepared has no hold on you (one thing to remember is that the meat in the markets that Shaul is talking about here is only clean meat, it is not mixed up with unclean meats like the majority of our modern meat markets and butcheries) - that since you are living a life of obedience to the Word of YHWH, then the food that YHWH permits, provides the same sustenance for you as it would if you knew its "chain of custody" (to use a legal phrase - meaning, if you could trace the path of the animal from its owner to the meat market, and you therefore knew it was handled entirely kosher (not sacrificed to idols), the meat has the same value to you and your body as it would if you were not able to trace its chain of custody. However, if you find out that it was sacrificed to an idol, even though you could still eat it because you know that that sacrifice possesses no power over you, you should not eat it so as to show the "unbeliever" (vs 10:27) serving it to you, in a teaching opportunity, that his sacrifice was not valid and that you will not participate in what the unbeliever intended it to mean. See Rav Shaul's own clarification of this in the verses just prior to 1 Corinthians 10:25. In 1 Corinthians 10:19-21, Rav Shaul says you do not want to partake at the table of our Master Y'shua and at the table of demons - instead take courage and show the unbeliever the error of their ways.

So it is very clear that this passage of Scripture does not in any way tell us that we can eat unclean meat! In fact, if you read the beginning of this chapter, Shaul teaches that we should not lust after evil (disobedience) like the Israelites in the wilderness.

Another verse that is often used to justify the eating of unclean meats is, “Not that which goes into the mouth defiles the man, but that which comes out of the mouth, this defiles the man.” (Mat 15:11). This verse is one of those verses that is misquoted the most. You see, Christianity of today is a humanistic religion appealing to those who do not want to change their sinful lifestyle, but still ‘feel’ spiritually justified.  To understand what is being said in Mat 15:11, we need to read the whole chapter and also have an understanding of Rabbinical Judaism (which is the Pharisee’s of today). In the beginning of this chapter, we see the Pharisees asking Y’hoshua why His disciples transgress the tradition of the elders, for they do not wash their hands before they eat (see also Mark 7:1-2).

Now if you know what this tradition of the elders is, then you will know that there was and still is a very specific ritual of washing hands before eating.  This ritual is enforced as a law by the Jews, but does not come from the Torah, it is part of the ‘Oral Law’ (traditions of the elders). The Rabbinical Jews of today still classify any food that has been handled without this ritualistic hand washing to be unkosher.

Another thing is that the Messiah could not and did not eat anything unclean as he would have broken the Torah if He did and deemed His death useless. He also would not have allowed any of His disciples to eat anything unclean. We can see that none of the disciples ate anything unclean before or after the death and resurrection of the Messiah by reading further in Scripture.

So as you can see, this passage of Scripture does in no way refer to the eating of unclean meats and should not be used to try and justify the eating of pork etc.

Here is another verse that is used to justify the disobedience of eating unclean meats. Although it is not used as much as the others and is not as convincing either, it is still used and needs to be addressed here. “Because every creature of Elohim is good, and none is to be rejected if it is received with thanksgiving, for it is set apart by the Word of Elohim and prayer” (1 Tim 4:4-5)

Now go read this whole chapter and ask yourself, is this verse talking about food? It clearly is not and should also not be used in that sense as that would be twisting the Scripture.

One thing that we must keep in mind is that Shaul (Paul) or any of the other Disciples or even Y’hoshua Mashiyach Himself can’t preach one thing and then do something else. They can’t live one way and teach another way. They all lived a Torah observant life and ate only kosher food according to what is written in the Torah. How then can any one of them teach others that it is okay to eat unkosher?

We are not under the Law if we eat kosher. We are also not bound by it either. Anything that is unclean is not considered to be food at all, why then would we eat ‘non-food’? If one does not eat kosher, then that person is the one that is bound. He is bound by the bondage of sin (disobedience) as he is going against the Instruction of YHWH. Doing the Torah of YHWH sets us free from the bondage of sin. It does in no way mean that we are under the Law as the majority of Christians will tell you. In fact, under the Law is a term that means “under a religious system” which actually deems the Christians and any other man-made religious group as those that are under the Law.

The Christian usually says that he does not have to keep the instruction of YHWH because he is not under the Law as “Jesus” did away with the Law. But this poor ignorant Christian has no idea what he is saying and is in fact still under the Law! What law did the Mashiyach then do away with? The Law of sin of course. By reconnecting us to the Covenant of YHWH!

Another thing to remember too is that Shaul and the other Disciples or Y’hoshua too, does not have the right or authority to change the Word or Instruction of YHWH. If any of them teaches anything that is against the Instruction of YHWH, then he is at fault and one should ignore the teachings of that person. But if we go have a look at what they really taught, then we can see that it is not against the Torah of YHWH.

When a Believer voices Torah conscience, the rest of the body is obligated to support them, even if some think otherwise. Paul refers to the Believers in Corinth as carnal babes who can't digest solid food and who are struggling to receive truth; they are contentious and walking in the flesh (1 Corinthians 3), much the same as the modern Christian church who uses these verses to endorse violation of Torah, which is simply a poor attempt to "justify" the weak carnal flesh.

"Unclean" animals/birds/fish are those that are carnivorous, those that are scavengers, those that eat road-kill and whatever they can scrounge, and those that eat dead things off the bottom of the ocean floor.

 “Do you not know that you are a Dwelling Place of Elohim and that the Spirit of Elohim dwells in you? If anyone destroys the Dwelling Place of Elohim, Elohim shall destroy him. For the Dwelling Place of Elohim is set-apart, which you are” (1 Corinthians 3:16-17) Click here to see what the negative effects of eating pork are to you 

The dietary laws that were given to the children of Israel as recorded in Leviticus 11 and Deuteronomy 14 are, what in modern terms is called, good nutrition or preventive medicine.  In other words what YHWH is saying is this, “If you keep My dietary laws on clean and unclean meat you will not get the kinds of sicknesses and diseases like what the Egyptians (or the other nations) were getting.

The knowledge of why the unclean animals are unclean has been known since the beginning of time. YHWH gave these commands for our own good so that we may live healthy lives. People get sick because of disobedience to the Word of YHWH (Torah) “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge.  Because you have rejected knowledge, I will reject you from being a priest for Me; Because you have forgotten the law of your Elohim, I will also forget your children.” (Hos. 4:6) Y’hoshua Mashiyach had never been sick His entire life on earth because He had never defiled His own body and had never tasted even one bit of unclean meat.  Should we not also follow His example? (1 Peter 2:21-24)

The dietary laws were given by YHWH not to harm or place obstacles in our pathway of salvation but to help and ensure our having healthy lives.  Failure to keep the dietary laws endangers our health and our careless eating habit is, in a way, tempting Elohim.

Just to leave you with one more thought:

If the dietary law has been done away with, and that we are able to eat the unclean animals alongside the clean animals… then there should be no such thing as hunger in this world!  Let me explain.

The meat that pig’s meat most closely resembles is that of human meat. In fact, human meat is so much healthier to eat than pork. If we are to accept pork as food, then we should also accept human meat as food and hence, will put an end to food shortage and hunger in the world, and also burial space as when a person dies, his body’s meat can be used to feed the poor, or even used in fine dinning restaurants if prepared well.

Why, all of a sudden, are we allowed to eat unclean pork, but not unclean human meat or horse meat for that matter, which is a million times healthier than pork? That is only because men make up the rules that they want without the instruction of the Scriptures.
 

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