Now the Lord spoke to Moses and Aaron, saying to them, “Speak to the children of Israel, saying, ‘These are the animals which you may eat among all the animals that are on the earth: Among the animals, whatever divides the hoof, having cloven hooves and chewing the cud—that you may eat.'” (Leviticus 11:1-3)
For many years I have jokingly confessed that, in my experience, there are three main topics that can get people going quicker than most anything: holidays as opposed to holy days, pre, mid or post and food. When you start messing with people’s food, they can become quite touchy. However, that is exactly what the Creator does in this and the ensuing passages. While the first ten chapters of Leviticus contain laws regarding the Sanctuary, these are instructions dealing with daily living.
According to God’s Word, nothing human is secular. In other words, the Word addresses every point of life, sometimes in very descriptive language. This concept flies in the face of secular culture and its thinking. Many people believe that “religion” should be confined to the church house — for instance, consider how separation of church and state is defined in America, today — “Don’t tell me what to do.” But in God’s way of thinking, the relationship we have with Him should begin in our own house and should touch everyone and everything we make contact with, including what we feed our bodies.
As I said, this is a touchy subject and usually provokes a great deal of lively conversation prompting some to ask why are we not to eat this but its okay to eat that? As to the specifics, perhaps the reason will remain unknown to human comprehension but consider this — the heart of such laws is the Creator’s desire for healthy souls to exist in healthy bodies. There is no commandment against eating Twinkies three times a day, but common sense tells us that to do such is not wise because it will eventually lead to health problems.
Given that the Creator is about life and blessing, He does not wish for His people to suffer with disease, and especially those that can be avoided by doing what He said to do. Let’s be honest: as a whole, death and disease are indicators of sin, weakness and failure, attributes that do not exist in the Creator. Therefore God, who is holy, wishes to dwell in clean, healthy temples which is why He instructs us in how to conduct our everyday life. Rather than taking offense, perhaps we should thank Him for caring so much about us and be grateful that, “He sent His word and healed them, and delivered them from their destructions. Oh, that men would give thanks to the Lord for His goodness, and for His wonderful works to the children of men! (Psalm 107:20-21).
Blessings and Shalom,