In the Old Testament, eating pork and shellfish was condemned in the book of Leviticus. And in Matthew 8:31 in the New Testament, demons begged Jesus to be sent into a “herd of SWINE”. Also in the Old Testament, Noah’s “cursed son” was named Ham (pronounced Hahm?), when ironically enough, the same general spelling of Ham’s name in the English language is now associated with a “pork product”.
ALSO as well: the Old Testament characters Haman (who’s name also derives from “ham”) and Haman’s father Hammedatha, were YET ANOTHER set of condemned characters in the bible. Not to mention that during the Feast of Ishtar (Easter), the ancient Pagans killed and ate a pig (ham) to commemorate the ancient god Tammuz, who is said to have been killed by a wild boar. Interesting, isn’t it?
And in most recent years, the following articles indicate the UNSAFETY of pig/pork/swine and shellfish/clam/oyster consumption:
SHELLFISH POISONING/RECALLS (some have even DIED from it):
I know Jesus Christ’s words in Matthew 15:11 [“Not that which goeth into the mouth defileth a man; but that which cometh out of the mouth, this defileth a man”] seem to be saying and/or hinting at that it doesn’t matter WHAT we eat so much as it matters WHAT we say……However, that doesn’t necessarily mean that Jesus Christ did away with Old Testament food laws per say, it only means he places more emphasis on what comes out of our mouths/our words/our spiritual testimony, rather that on what we eat. [However…..I’m sure the Lord Jesus/Yeshua probably wouldn’t approve of alot of the fat-binding, artery-clogging, heart-attack-inducing food that we have on the market today]. And in light of the all the most recent pork and shellfish “bacteria” and “recalls” in the last couple of years, I’ve now decided to go permanently pork-free/Old Testament style.
However, long before I ever went pork-free, I oftentimes thought about why the demons begged Jesus Christ to go INTO a “herd of swine” if swine were considered an “Ok-to-eat/consume-type-animal”. But then it occurred to me: swine were NOT considered a clean animal, so that’s why the demons of Matthew 8:31 so desperately wanted to go INTO an unclean animal.
But the day I was silently pondering all this, something asked me the fateful question: “if the Lord considered pork to be unclean, would you still consume it?” That question cut away at my very soul! I felt SO convicted in that moment and as though eating pork was wrong! That’s when I stopped eating pork, ENTIRELY. NOT ONLY because of all the most recent recalls, but because of the Holy Spirit’s fateful question to me.
And true, there WERE a few times when I’ve “unknowingly” eaten something that contained pork or a pork byproduct (because the pork listing was near the very BOTTOM of the ingredient list, so one must look very, very carefully at ingredient labels these days). And I immediately got sick to my stomach afterwards each time. And then I would look at the long, long list of ingredients on things, and guess what, 8 times out of 10, it had a pork or pork byproduct in it! Just because something seems like it wouldn’t have pork or a pork byproduct in it doesn’t mean that it doesn’t, so look very, very carefully!
But what we need to remember is THIS: the Lord really DOES know what’s best for us. Many Christians today claim pork was only forbidden during times of the Old Testament due to “bad sanitation practices”, etc. Well, just look at all the “bad” sanitation practices of pork plants TODAY, in the year 2013 and beyond! Obviously somebody somewhere isn’t doing their job or the sanitation “practices” for pork aren’t good enough, otherwise we wouldn’t even be having all these recalls and illnesses now, to begin with, now, would we? Think about it, folks!
Obviously I can’t tell you not to eat pork and/or shellfish if you’re Christian. You’re going to eat it if you want to and I can’t stop you. But please. Before you eat your next piece of ham, hot dog, bratwurst, sausage, pepperoni, shellfish product, etc., please, please consider all the latest recalls.
Is that small piece of clam/oyster/shellfish worth it, if it could possibly cause you paralysis or your very own DEATH? Or are those pieces of bacon or hot dogs etc. worth it if it could cause you some SERIOUS illness, if you just so happen to eat a “tainted” product? Because today, in the year 2014, there’s been MANY tainted “pork products”, so please consider that during your next trip to the grocery store/food market, people!
That being said, I’ve oftentimes wondered what types of foods Jesus and his disciples/etc. ate during the times of the New Testament (and even what Old Testament eaters ate). And though I haven’t yet read any of the following books, I’m highly considering them! 😉