Tuesday, February 11, 2020

Is God's Biblical Food Laws Still In Effect!?


I recently came across an article written by Tim Zimmerman (who calls himself an apostle of Christ) regarding unclean meats. And he writes:
"In this article, I will present total 100% solid undeniable, irrefutable proof that Jesus cleansed all animal meats and that they are acceptable for food. ...
Peter's Vision:
Acts 10:9 On the morrow, as they went on their journey, and drew nigh unto the city, Peter went up upon the housetop to pray about the sixth hour:
10 And he became very hungry, and would have eaten: but while they made ready, he fell into a trance,
(it is very important to understand that Peter was hungry. He was in need of eating food.)
11 And saw heaven opened, and a certain vessel descending upon him, as it had been a great sheet knit at the four corners, and let down to the earth: 
(The Greek word for "vessel" is Strong's #G4632 - skeus, which can mean the tackle and armament of vessels, used specifically of sails and ropes. It does not make sense for this to be a sheet with animals in it. Animals are held by cages and nets/ropes/chains. Not sheets of cloth. The Almighty would reveal things to Peter in a way that Peter could understand and relate to. Peter was a fisherman who worked on ships. The Greek word for "sheet" is Strong's #G3607 - othone, which can refer to linen but also to a sail. Placing the two Greek words together in the same sentence in the context of being spoken to a fisherman, and speaking of holding animals, it is very clear that it is a net.)
12 Wherein were all manner of four-footed beasts of the earth, and wild beasts, and creeping things, and fowls of the air.
(Peter recognized these beasts as what he considered as unclean animals. see vs. 14)
13 And there came a voice to him, Rise, Peter; kill, and eat.
(Peter was hungry and The Almighty told Peter to kill and eat these animals!)
(The Almighty need not tell Peter to kill and eat gentiles!)
14 But Peter said, Not so, Lord; for I have never eaten any thing that is common or unclean.
(What did Peter call unclean? Answer: The animals that The Almighty told him to kill and eat! Peter was not calling Gentiles unclean. He was calling the animals unclean.)
15 And the voice spake unto him again the second time, What God hath cleansed, that call not thou common.
(Peter called the animals unclean. The Almighty told Peter to not call them unclean. This is as clear as day! The Almighty corrected Peter! The almighty told Peter that these animals were no longer unclean, rather that He had cleansed them! It cannot be more clear.)"
(Zimmerman, Tim; Unlean Meats or Provision for the Great Tribulation? Retrieved 10 February 2020).
Now, I say with the authority of Jesus Christ that he is horribly wrong! I have highlighted grave errors on his part above. All one needs to do is to continue reading the chapter and God's living Word reveals HIS TRUTH!

Let's actually begin in Acts 10:1; NKJV throughout -
 "There was a certain man in Caesarea called Cornelius, a centurion [roughly equivalent to a captain in the US Army] of what was called the Italian Regiment, 2) a devout man and one who feared God with all his household, ... 3) About the ninth hour of the day he saw clearly in a vision an angel of God coming in and saying to him, 'Cornelius!' ... 4) ... 'Your prayers and your alms have come up for a memorial before God. 5) Now send men  to Joppa, and send for Simon whose surname is Peter.'"
Friends, even before God reveals to the Apostle Peter the answer to his vision, verse 5 underlined is a clue. So, these two household servants and a devout soldier (three men) were sent by Cornelius to the Apostle Peter. 

Now, let's review the Apostle Peter's vision:
Verse 9 - "The next day, as they went on their journey and drew near the city, Peter went up on the housetop to pray, about the sixth hour. 10) Then he became very hungry and wanted to eat; but while they made ready, he fell into a trance 11) and saw heaven [the atmosphere] opened and an object like a great sheet bound at the four corners, descending to him and let down to the earth. 12) In it were all kinds of four-footed animals of the earth, wild beasts, creeping things, and birds of the air. 13) And a voice came to him, 'Rise, Peter; kill and eat.' 14) But Peter said, 'Not so Lord! For I have never eaten anything common or unclean.'"
So, right here in verse 14, with Peter not yet knowing the answer for this vision, he knew that God's dietary laws for mankind were still very much in effect - as in animals, creeping things, and birds. And also, this shows that nearly 30 years after the glorious resurrection of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, the Apostle Peter, and the other apostles were still NOT eating unclean meats as directed per Leviticus 11:1-8, 47; Deuteronomy 14:1-29.
Verse 15 - "And a voice spoke to him again the second time, 'What God has cleansed you must not call common.' 16) This was done three times ..." 
In other words, God repeated that phrase THREE TIMES.

Now, let's get to the true answer from God for this vision of Peter's.
Verse 19 - "While Peter thought about the vision, the Spirit [God's Spirit] said to him, 'Behold, THREE MEN are seeking you. 20) Arise therefore, go down and go with them, DOUBTING NOTHING; FOR I HAVE SENT THEM.'"
Verse 24 - "And the following day they entered Caesarea. Now Cornelius was waiting for them, and had called together his relatives and close friends. 25) As Peter was coming in, Cornelius met him and fell down at his feet and worshiped him. 26) But Peter lifted him up, saying, 'Stand up; I myself am also a man.' 27) And as he talked with him, he went in and found many who had come together. 28) Then he said to them, ..." - and here is something that God was correcting the Apostle Peter regarding - "' You know how unlawful it is for a Jewish man to keep company with or go to one of another nation. But God [in this vision] has shown me that I should not call any MAN common or unclean. 29) Therefore I came without objection as soon as I was sent for. I ask, then, for what reason have you sent for me?'"
And then, the crux of what God wanted the Apostle Peter - and all of us - to understand:
Verse 34 - "Then Peter opened his mouth and said: 'In truth I perceive that God shows no partiality. 35) But IN EVERY NATION whoever fears [revrently fears] Him and works righteousness IS ACCEPTED BY HIM'" 
Either Gentile or Jew!!

So, in truth, this vision had nothing to do with 'The almighty told Peter that these animals were no longer unclean, rather that He had cleansed them!'
Verse 44 - "While Peter was still speaking these words, the Holy Spirit fell upon all those who heard the word. 45) And those of the circumcision who believed [those who abide by the law of Moses. Which were the temporary ceremonial laws, such as animal sacrifices, physical circumcision, stoning, tassels, etc, under the Old Covenant] were astonished, as many as came with Peter, BECAUSE THE GIFT OF THE HOLY SPIRIT HAD BEEN POURED OUT ON THE GENTILES ALSO."
When one - like Mr. Zimmerman -  takes Scripture out of proper context, there is no possible way to understand the living truth of the Almighty God!

God's living Word - the Holy Bible - WARNS about those who love, believe, and teach, a lie:
"But outside [outside of the holy city - New Jerusalem will be] dogs [a spiritual predator who feeds off others] and sorcerers and sexually immoral [also meaning, people who have been seduced into believing and following false claims about doctrine] and murderers and idolaters, and whoever loves and practices a lie" - Revelation 22:15.
Now, in the aforementioned article, Mr. Zimmerman had mentioned that he personally didn't eat unclean meat as per God in Leviticus 11:1-8, 47; Deuteronomy 14:1-29 for some 22-24 years! He claims that it in the future will "be a major challenge for many who have been taught otherwise." How so!? This reminds me of something Minister Guy LaMar wrote:
"Those are individual choices that won't be beneficial for the good of the body. Let's get something clear - GOD - THE CREATOR OF ALL - Has had laws for mankind since He created mankind. Those laws - when observed - will result in good things but when they are broken then bad things happen. Why? Because God put those laws in motion for the benefit of mankind. God made dietary laws for mankind so as for the benefit of mankind."
I couldn't have put it more eloquent than that!

The Apostle Paul wrote under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit:
"For this you know, that no fornicator [again, people who have been seduced into believing and following false doctrine or religions], unclean person [an immoral person], nor covetous man, who is an idolater, has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God. 6) Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of these things the wrath of God comes upon the sons of disobedience. 7) Therefore do not be partakers with them" - Ephesians 5:5-7.
Sadly, although the greater majority who profess Christ believe that they can eat unclean meats, the Apostle Paul wrote:
"For God did not call us to uncleanness, but in holiness. 8) Therefore he who rejects this does not reject man, but God, who has also given us His Holy Spirit" - 1 Thessalonians 4:7-8.
And Brother Peter added:

"then the Lord knows how to deliver the godly out of temptations and reserve the unjust under punishment for the day of judgment, 10) and especially those who walk according to the flesh in the lust of uncleanness and despise authority. They are presumptuous, self-willed. They are not afraid to speak evil of dignitaries" - 2 Peter 2:9-10.

Sadly, so many who profess Christ despise God's living authority and eat whatever they lust after. And, many of these same will claim that Jesus declared all animals to be clean to eat - even though HE DID NOT!

Now, while Mr. Zimmerman is correct in his study of the Greek words, he was terribly wrong in assuming that Jesus had declared that all animals were now clean to eat. Truthfully, would you want to eat a leech, or a mosquito, or a cockroach!? Even using but logic should tell us that such things are unhealthy. Peter himself obviously did not believe that Jesus had declared all animals as clean as he knew that the dietary laws of God were still in effect.

And another primary "proof" text that many Protestants and Catholics alike use - including Mr. Zimmerman - is Mark 7:18-19. Mr. Zimmerman writes:
"When did Christ cleanse animals? Answer: In Mark 7:19
Mark 7:19 (New American Standard Bible) "because it does not go into his heart, but into his stomach, and is eliminated? Thus He declared all foods clean." (The Almighty showed me that the NASB is more accurate than KJV. ...) ..."
Friends, I say this: The worth of a Bible translation is to be found in its precision and its accuracy of meaning. The most logical verses to use to test are Genesis 1:1-2. The beginning verses of any translation of the Bible reflect the character of the whole translation. Why!? Because the first two verses of the Bible in Hebrew are so full of meaning, yet stated so very succinctly! So, how a translator words these two verses will reflect his biblical understanding as much as his knowledge of grammar. In fact, the word construction in Genesis 1:1-2 is such that two translations are possible grammatically - but only one of the two translations gives the correct meaning. The other, as in the NASB, contradicts the plain statement of Isaiah 45:18 - "For thus says the LORD, Who created the heavens, Who is God, Who formed the earth and made it, Who established it, Who did not create it in vain, Who formed it to be inhabited." Almighty God and our Lord Jesus Christ created the earth to be inhabited; They did not create it in chaos, They created it to be inhabited! A Bible translation may be accurate, but that does not necessarily make the translation correct. In deciding among Bible translations - of which I have seven different translations in my library - people usually ask, Which one should I choose!? However, this is the wrong question to ask! It is never wise to use just one translation. We should ask, instead, which versions or translations are the most carefully worded!? Which are the most effective for studying!? Which preserves the original texts most accurately!?

Anyway, turn with me if you would to the Book of Mark, chapter 7 and read this in your Bible:
"So He said to them, 'Are you thus without understanding also? Do you not perceive that whatever enters a man from outside cannot defile him, because it does not enter his heart but his stomach, and is eliminated, thus purifying all foods?'" - Mark 7:18-19.
Well, there are at least SEVEN problems when using this as a "proof" text.

  1. "thus purifying all foods" is not in all manuscripts. As in the Textus Receptus (the beginning of the seventeenth century, the Greek text used in preparing the King James Version was the Textus Receptus), it does not use the phrase "thus purifying all foods."
  2. Also, in the Jay P. Green's The Interlinear Bible Hebrew-Greek-English translates this thus: "This is because it does not enter into his heart, but into the belly, and goes out into the waste bowl, purging all the foods."
So, Jesus (and even presuming that the Greek words relating to purging are actually what He said) appears to be saying that the digestive tract purges all the foods that go into it. He is NOT saying that all unclean meats are now therefore clean.
  1. Also, notice - and I saw this immediately - that Jesus was asking a question either in verse 19 or 20 (according to the translators). He was not making a declaration concerning clean or unclean meats.
  2. Also, the full context of Mark 7 was of the Pharisees complaining that Jesus' disciples did not wash their hands as in the tradition of the elders. See Mark 7:1-3. It had NOTHING to do with unclean meats.
  3. Also, after the incident recorded in Mark 7, Jesus said, "' Blind guides, who strain out a gnat and swallow a camel!'" - Matthew 23:24. In this metaphor, He uses two unclean creatures - a gnat and a camel.
  4. Also, let us consider this: in the third-century, an elder named Pionius, who claimed to be part of the "Catholic Church,' refused to eat unclean meat: 3) It was Saturday and after they had prayed and taken the sacred bread with water, Polemon the temple verger came in on them with his men in order to seek out the Christians and drag them off to offer sacrifice and to taste forbidden meats. "Surely you are aware," said the verger, "of the emperor' edict commanding us to sacrifice to the gods." "We are aware," said Pionius, "of the commandments of God ordering us to worship him alone." (The Martyrdom of Pionius and his companions, Chapters 3, 6, & 9. - http://archive.is/abf7S; reviewed 11 February 2020). 
  5.  True Christians DO NOT come to the same conclusion that people like Mr. Zimmerman has. Believing what Almighty God and our Lord God Jesus Christ's living WORD says is NOT picking and choosing, it is those who refuse to obey God's Word or to follow our Lord's examples that are choosing to disobey.
It is a known fact that there can develop grave health problems with eating bats (See: 'Scientists Pinpoint 2 Causes Behind China's Deadly Coronavirus - They're Both Shocking'), rats, snakes, and even including pig (See: '4 Hidden Dangers of Pork'), along with many other biblically unclean meats. Friends, if you're not going to believe and trust Almighty God - the CREATOR OF ALL - then, you'll probably not going to believe WHO or a nutritionist.

So, the prohibitions against eating such meats as pork were NOT "nailed to the Cross" or done away with. Our Savior's death and resurrection did not change the contamination of certain meats.

God says:
" ... 'Listen carefully to Me, and eat what is good, and let your soul [your life] delight itself in abundance. 3) Incline your ear, and come to Me. Hear, and your soul [your life] shall live; ...'" - Isaiah 55:2, 3.

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