Presenting a digest of Divine Law concerning
and an autopsy that I will never forget!
Bible and Health
Do the scriptures speak to our physical well-being?
The Christian churches long ago threw out
the Old Testament as a guide for moral and healthful living, yet evidence indicates
that there are scientifically-supported principles behind the Biblical food laws.
A PASTOR'S PERSONAL TESTIMONY
Far too many Christians have the mistaken view that the Bible relates only to "pie in the sky when we die," and is of little benefit to our daily lives while we are yet alive. I suppose that I had also thought that way at one time, until a chain of events occurred which proved to me otherwise.
A WARNING TO DOCTORS - AND THE PUBLIC
Several years ago the author took a job in the purchasing department of a large regional hospital. My duties included delivering medical supplies to each department throughout the building. One afternoon a large-sized new medical book arrived for the hospital library, containing the latest studies by the government health authorities, and in curiosity I thumbed through it while on a break. It stated that 40% of the swine's flesh that was tested for trichinae was found to be infested, but was approved and sold to the public after the removal of only visible "cysts," or eggs. Trichinae worms and eggs which were inside the carcass and not visible from the outside were still passed by the government for human consumption. The government's position was that it is up to the public to cook the meat thoroughly to kill any such worms or eggs, although no effort is apparently made to warn the public of the danger. But the high percentage of pork found to be infested with trichinae bothered me, and I lost my appetite for pork products from that time on.
AN AUTOPSY I'LL NEVER FORGET
A few weeks later, in delivering supplies to the morgue in the basement of the hospital, I was greeted by the mortician, a doctor who performs the autopsies. I told him about the book delivered to the hospital library, with confirmation of pork trichinae infestation, and asked if he had ever found worms when doing autopsies on the deceased. "Of course!" he replied, and explained that he had just finished an autopsy of a woman who, he found, had her head full of worms. "Did you write that down on the death certificate?" I asked. He smiled at my suggestion and said, "Of course not! Would you want to be told that your dearly departed had her head full of worms?" He told me that he listed the cause of death as a "heart infarction" (heart attack), which was partially true since the trichinae had also infested her heart muscle. Heart problems, in fact, are listed as the cause of a large number of deaths in America each year. How many of those deaths are actually the result of trichinae worms which lodge in the heart and other muscles?
The Bible tells us in Leviticus 11, verses 7 to 11, "And the swine... is unclean to you. Of their flesh shall ye not eat, and their carcass shall ye not touch; they are unclean to you... They shall be even an abomination unto you; ye shall not eat of their flesh, but ye shall have their carcasses in abomination." In light of this, can anyone say that God didn't know, or refused to tell us, of the dangers of eating pork? Modern theologians ridicule the thought of Bible health laws, saying these were just religious rituals which have now been abolished by Christ at Calvary. Yet Jesus Himself said that, "Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law." (Matthew 5:18) Since heaven and earth have not yet passed away, the law must still be in effect!
Everything that God has created has a purpose, although we may not fully understand what that purpose is. A front-page article which appeared in the Wall Street Journal a few years ago contained an interesting observation. The author said that scientists have found a purpose for every plant, animal, and insect within the food chain, except for one: the mosquito does not appear to be a significant food source for any other creature. But scientists will no doubt one day discover that the lowly mosquito also has its purpose in God's plan! The swine also has a purpose as a scavenger. They are constructed almost immune to poisons like rattle-snake bites, and can be used to clean up infested areas. Shrimp and snails ("escargot") serve a similar purpose in cleaning up waste and filth in the seas. These poisons accumulate in their bodies -- as well as yours if you eat them. Not everything with "meat on the bone" is food for the stomach!
We believe that the truth the Bible contains relates to all of life today, for men and women as individuals, and for society as a whole. We refer to this as a "Christian World-view." Everything in life can be viewed in terms of Scriptural principles to see how God would have us to live. We believe that the principles in God's law are moral principles which apply in any time or place; that God is not simply giving us silly rituals to follow in the Bible is clear when He says, "for you shall be healthy before me." (Lev. 20:26) God cares about your physical well-being! See the article following for more information on Bible food laws. -J.S. Brooks
A DIGEST OF DIVINE LAW CONCERNING FOOD
"You shall not pollute your lives with animal
or bird, or any reptile of the field, which I have pointed out to you as unclean;
but you shall be healthy before me."
ANIMALS: Must "divide the hoofs and chew the cud" (Lev. 11:3) This includes the ox, sheep, goat, stag (venison), elk, moose, chamois, antelope, bison, cattle. Not included: pig (pork, swine) and the common meals made with it - spareribs, much lunch-meat, pork hot dogs, etc.; rabbit, ape, camel, kangaroo; all carnivores, such as wolf, bear, seal, walrus; lizard species; reptiles; vermin, such as worms (often found in fruit), frogs, toads, mole, mouse, snakes, and turtle. (Lev. 11:30-31)
BIRDS: The Bible lists many fowl as being examples of unclean food, which may be categorized in the following manner: All fowl with webbed feet, such as duck and goose, are unclean; as well as sea birds, such as eagle, osprey, hawk, vulture, raven, ostrich, sea gull, buzzard, pelican, owl, stork, heron, bat, kite, cormorant, swan, and plover (lap wing species). (Lev. 11:19)
FISH: "All that have fins and scales" are good for food (Lev. 11:9). This includes most fish: cod, haddock, herring, halibut, smelt, whiting, salmon, trout, skate, tuna, perch. This does not include crustaceans, such as shrimp, crayfish, lobster, and crab; nor mollusks, such as clam, oysters, mussels, snails (escargot), squids, octopus; nor scale-less, such as whale, shark, and dolphin.
PLANTS: Most fruits, vegetables, grains, and nuts which are edible are good for food; specifically, every herb-bearing seed, and fruit of a tree yielding seed. (Genesis 1:29) This does not include sporing plants, classified as 'fungi,' such as mushrooms and mold.
INTERNAL ORGANS: These are specifically prohibited, such as kidney, liver, etc. (Lev. 3:15), blood (Lev. 17:13), fat, and the lard and suet made from it (Lev. 7:23).
INSECTS: Generally forbidden, except for the locust, grasshopper, and beetle (cockchafer) species. (Lev. 11:22)
BENEFITS OF FOLLOWING THE BIBLE FOOD LAWS:
A MAN IS WHAT HE EATS
The Bible says that if you do not obey divine law, including that governing food, that "the Lord will strike you with consumption, and fever, and wasting, and burning...and blight, and jaundice, ...ulcer, ...tumors, and scurvy." (Deut. 28:22, 28) A man is what he eats; if you eat bad food you should expect to get sick!
HEALTHIER IN BODY AND MIND
Compare man's span of life today with that in the days when the divine food laws were kept. The average span of life has fallen from 120 years (Genesis 6:3) to 65 to 75 years today. For a proven application of Bible food laws, read Daniel 1:8-20. Daniel and his friends refused the King's rations, which were not scripturally sound. The result was that, after maintaining a correct diet, they were healthier in body and mind than those children who ate forbidden foods.
NATURAL LAW AND AN INSTITUTION FOREVER!
This was no accident, but was based upon natural law given us by God. "It is an institution for- ever, for your descendants, in all your dwelling places..." (Lev. 3:17)
All quotes from "the Holy Bible In Modern English," by Ferrar Fenton