To Eat Or Not To Eat (part 1)
One day while I was driving home, I stopped my car to observe a crow eating the remains of what was left of the carcass of a dead squirrel lying in the road. I have seen this scene many number of times with other types of scavengers and with other types of dead creatures. We have at sometime noticed the natural function of some birds and animals and how they are designed to clean up our environment. This function of how wildlife behaves is very natural to us and we would not think it to be unusual. But why is this natural? Is this the function of some evolutionary process or a grand design? If this is a natural process in which our environment behaves, then one would have to wonder if there is anywhere else in our universe where this kind of “cleaning up of our environment” is occurring. It is easy to see that these creatures do what they do naturally and that they are programmed to function as they do. To carry this thought further, if this is the function of a scavenger to operate on the land as they do, then is it far fetched to think that cleaning up our waterways would undergo the same scrutiny? If the laws of nature operate this way in one instance, then I would have to believe they would function the same way in the other.
I bought a new Ford pickup truck and it included an important document on the care of my vehicle, called “owners instruction manual”. If the manufacture of a vehicle would think it necessary to issue an instruction manual, then it would be natural for our creator God and Father to have done the same. God has given us instructions in the Bible to teach His children how to receive blessings and keep ourselves in good health. He wants us to understand that His creation is perfect and He gives us information on His health laws that we would never find out on our own. We need to go to His instruction manual, the Bible, and seek the answers.
My People Are Destroyed For Lack of Knowledge, Hosea 4:6
There was a time when the nation of Israel was in bondage in Egypt because they were in ignorance of God’s law. They had no way of knowing what caused their bondage. Moses was sent by God to rescue God’s people and they eventually learned, through God’s leading and teaching how to keep their bodies in good health. We can read of His dietary laws in Leviticus the eleventh chapter and in Deuteronomy the fourteenth chapter. Some say that these are Jewish laws and have been done away with. The nation of Israel was composed of eleven other sons, not just the one son, Judah. These health laws are for all of mankind, Jew as well as Gentile. God did not lie to His people concerning food that would be fit or unfit for human consumption . We have the same body as they did and if these dietary laws were good for the nation then, they are good for us now. We have the same body.
Deut. 14:3, “Thou shalt not eat any abominable thing”.
These are pretty strong words. God wanted to keep His people in good physical health and be an example to other nations who they would come in contact with.
Deut. 14:8, “ And the swine, because it divideth the hoof, yet not cheweth the cud, it is unclean unto you; you shall not eat their flesh, nor touch their dead carcass”. Verse 9, ‘These you may eat of all that are in the waters: all that have fins and scales shall ye eat”: verse 19, “ and whatsoever hath not fins and scales ye may not eat; it is unclean to you.
The subject of Gods instruction concerning clean and unclean food carries through in the New Testament also.
Acts 10:11, “And ( Peter ) saw heaven opened, and a certain vessel descending unto Him, as it had been a great sheet knit at the four corners, and let down to the earth”. Verse 12, “ wherein were all manner of four-footed beasts of the earth, and wild beasts, and creeping things , and fowls of the air”. Verse 13, “ And there came a voice unto him “ Rise, Peter; kill and eat”. Verse 14, “ but Peter said, not so Lord; for I have never eaten anything that is common or unclean”. Verse 19, “ while Peter thought on this vision, the spirit said unto him, Behold three men seek thee”.
Peter knew that God didn’t change any of His dietary laws but that the Gentiles, who were thought to be unclean by the Jews, were now part of the same following as Peter.
Acts 10:28, “And he said unto them, We know how it’s an unlawful thing for a man that is a Jew to keep company, or to come unto one of another nation; but God hath showed me that I should not call any man common or unclean.”
Verse 34,“ Then Peter opened His mouth, and said, “ Of a truth I perceive that God is no respecter of persons”: Verse 35, ‘ But in every nation he that feareth Him and worketh His righteousness, is accepted with him”.
The lowering of the sheet with unclean creatures in it was God’s way of telling Peter that all people are God’s children. That is the subject of the tenth chapter of Acts, that whosoever wants to draw close to God like Cornelius and his family did is welcomed and received. Some think that they can eat whatsoever they want without it doing them harm.
Ecclesiastes 8:11, Because sentence against an evil work is not executed speedily, therefore the heart of the sons of men is fully set to do evil.
The Apostle Paul instructs Timothy on this subject also.
1st Tim. 4:2, “Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils”; Verse 2 “ speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron”; verse 3, “Forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from meats (food ) which God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth”.
God didn’t create all of His creation to be good for the diet of man, only those foods which God created to be received. Some were created for human consumption and some were created as scavengers to clean up our environment, including our waters as well as on our land.
Verse 4, “for every creature of God is good, and nothing to be refused, if it be received with thanksgiving; For it is sanctified by the word of God and prayer”.
The creature in this verse is created by God for a specific purpose.
The Old Testament gives us the pictures of the created creatures and their function.
Cattle is designed with 1 stomach with four different compartments. It can digest food, swallow it and bring it up again. This is called chewing the cud and is a type of meditating.
Psalm 1:2, And his delight is in the law; And in His law he doth meditate day and night.
There are animals that have a cloven hoof, or a split hoof. This pictures how we, as creatures of God, can go in any direction, in taking the Gospel throughout the world.
Swine? Pigs have been known to eat dead insects, worms, rotting carcasses as well as garbage. They also don’t have sweat glands to eliminate poisons from their body, thereby retaining toxins in the fat. Swine were created as a scavenger.
Isaiah 65:2, “I have spread out My hands all the day unto a rebellious people, which walked in a way that is not good, after their own thoughts;” 3, ” A people that provoked Me to anger continually to My face; that sacrifice in gardens, and burneth incense upon altars of Brick.” (God’s altar is a golden altar, Exodus 39:38). 4,” Which remain among the grave, and the lodge in the monuments which eat swine’s flesh, and broth of abominable things is in their vessels.” (We are vessels to contain God’s Holy Spirit, 2nd Corinthians 4:7.)
Sea food: Only fish which have fins and scales are to be eaten. Nature shows us that fins help guide the creature through the water. Water represents the people of the world and teaches us that listening to people instead of God without checking for truth can get us in trouble.
Revelation 17:15, And he said unto me,” the waters which thou sawest where the whore sitteth are peoples, and multitudes, and nations and tongues.”
The scales of fish represent the amour of God.
Ephesians 4:10, ” Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and the power of His might.” 11, ” Put on the whole armor of God, that you may stand against the wiles of the devil.”
The waters in the world contain sea creatures, which are used by natural means to clean up pollutants as well as dead matter. It would take an entire book to compare God’s dietary laws to his natural creation. these few examples could lead to a much larger and more complete study.
Mankind in general is unclean. We don’t have a cloven foot, a physical stomach as cattle to regurgitate food, fins or scales to guide us through life etc. But we do have the word of God to help us through life’s journey. He tells us what is good for us and we can even examine the design in nature according to creatures who were created for our food and nourishment.
We live in a blessed nation, but we have a greater share of sickness because much of our diet is not fit for human consumption. We know that good health does not come cheap. Healing the body can be very expensive along with the cost of drugs.
God loves all his children but knows that we need to look to Him and His creation for the answers to better health
Part 2 will explain why God wants us the learn the difference between the clean and unclean which will give us a foundation for the Holy and the unholy.