Forbidden Food

Leviticus 11:2
“Speak to the children of Israel, saying, ‘These are the animals which you may eat among all the animals that are on the earth.'”

IMG_1488If we go back to the call of Abraham, we realize Israel was a nation chosen and established by God. Abraham was told that through his seed all the nations of the earth would be blessed. Later, we read God’s purpose in choosing Israel was for them to be a light to the rest of the world.  God’s idea was for the world to know who He was, through the witness of His people. One factor that would make their light shine more brightly was living by a higher standard than the world around them. This is part of the reason for the dietary laws.

There may be some health reasons behind the food restrictions God placed upon His people, but this is certainly not the main reason for adopting them. There are many foods they were allowed to eat that are as unhealthy as what was forbidden. Instead, the laws were designed to cause Israel to stand out, and be a witness to the world. This principle is highlighted in the story of Daniel. You recall how he was offered all of the king’s delicacies, but chose to eat only vegetables (Daniel 1:8). This was, no doubt, driven by two factors. First,  the dietary restrictions of the Law, and second was the fact that much of the food of Babylon was offered to idols. When Daniel chose to stand up for the Word of God and live accordingly, he became a powerful witness to his generation. We find others joined him in his stand for the Lord, and many were drawn into relationship with God.

Jesus explained that the Christian is called to be a light to the world. The more we commit ourselves to the ways of God, the brighter that light will shine. When we refuse to bow to the standards of our culture, and instead, live according to the Word of God, we will see others drawn to Christ. While we do not have a list of movies, television shows, or a playlist of songs, that we are to avoid, it is clear from content, there are many things on which Christians have no business spending their money, or filling their minds. Remember, our first priority is to glorify God, and be a light to the world in which we live.

Pastor Jim

 

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