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‘Commanding to abstain from meats’

August 31, 2013
By Pastor Steven W. Pyle (Elkins Church of God of Prophecy)

The Lord greatly blessed us with two souls giving their lives to Christ in our recent revival with Pastor David Wilmoth. In Parsons, seven were born again during a funeral service. More were saved or blessed at the St. George Church of God revival.

Thanks be unto Jehovah God, His Son, Jesus Christ, and their power manifested through the Holy Ghost as Brother David ministered for two weeks in the Tygart Valley Region!

As for me, by the direction of the Holy Ghost and sensing the urgency to "preach Christ and Him crucified," I've completely disconnected from political activism, and must now concentrate on the winning of souls to Jesus Christ, His kingdom and His Church.

Notwithstanding, we must still continue prayers for our nation, world and its leaders! We must pray for those with whom God calls to petition meekly, boldly and humbly about Christ to those in higher power.

Our topic this time is the controversy concerning what meats we should eat according to biblical standards. Paul admonishes in his first epistle to Timothy chapter 4:1-5.

"Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits and doctrines of devils; Speaking lies in hypocrisy, having their conscience seared with a hot iron; forbidding to marry, and 'commanding to abstain from meats,' which God hath created to be 'received' with thanksgiving, of them which believe and know the truth. For every creature of god is 'good,' and 'nothing' to be refused 'if' it be received with thanksgiving: for it is 'sanctified' by the word of God and prayer."

In other words, every creature (except humans, but even grasshoppers) is good if it be received with thanksgiving, and is sanctified (cleansed or set apart) by the word of Jehovah God, Jesus Christ and the Holy Ghost through prayer (or rendering a blessing of grace in the name of Jesus Christ).

These creatures include, but are not limited to, any cloven- or cleft-hoofed, or cud-chewing animal, storks and other fowls once forbidden. If you are in the Philippines, you may eat a glute, which is the cooked egg, one week before it hatches! If you want these things, cook, thank Jesus and eat!

The letter of the law kills, the Holy Spirit gives life. There are many OT Levitical, dietary laws, that declared Israelites to abstain from meats. Mostly, these laws concerning meat, as we see clearly in our generation, were given by God, because of microscopic organisms which with no refrigeration, could cause rapid, poisonous contamination to certain meat types. Ahead, was a journey of 40 years in the hot desert wilderness.

In Jesus is life, and the "law was a schoolmaster to bring us to Christ." He came not to "destroy the law but to fulfill it." We see the omnipotence, foreknowledge, and omnipresence of God the Father, God the Son Jesus Christ, and God the Holy Spirit, in their true diety, even in the OT.

The Eternal Christ in His pre-incarnate Theophany appears on the plains of Mamre with two accompanying angels to pronounce the birth of Issac to the aging Abraham and Sarah, and to declare the judgment of God on the morally depraved cities of Sodom and Gomorrah.

In this passage the KJV bible records: "And Abraham ran unto the herd, and (fetched) a 'calf' tender and 'good', and gave it unto a young man, and he hasted to 'dress' (prepare and cook) it.

"And he took butter, and milk and the calf which he had dressed, and set it before them, (Christ and the two angels); and he stood by them under the tree, and they did eat." Isaiah declares that Christ, Immanuel, God with us in the flesh, would eat, butter and honey.

I personally enjoy the white meat poultry, some types of beef, luncheon meats, pork products, and a few varieties of fish. My favorite meats are fried hamburgers and crab cakes!

On the night of His betrayal, Jesus partook of the Passover lamb and traditional meal, before administering the Holy Communion elements. He mentions the fatted calf in his true parable of the prodigal son's return home.

As Jesus makes two of three post resurrection appearances to the apostles he mentions "have you any meat"? "And they gave him a piece of a broiled fish, and of a honeycomb. And He took it, and did eat before them"; Luke 24: 41-43. His third appearance to them was with bread and fish upon the fire.

Peter, while hungry, has a revelation that would eventually lead him to win the Italian Gentile Cornelius and his family to faith in Christ, sanctification, the baptism of the Holy Ghost with the evidence of speaking in tongues, and water baptism.

This is done in double Holy Spirit visionary metaphor, to specifically declare that Gentiles or any type of creature was good, because nothing God cleanses is unclean!

"Peter went up upon the house to pray about the sixth hour (noon). And he became very hungry, and would have eaten: but while they (in the house below) made ready (food), he fell into a trance, and saw heaven opened, and a certain vessel descending unto him and a sheet knit at the four corners, and let down to the earth.

"Wherein were all manner of four footed beasts of the earth, and wild beasts, and creeping things, and fowls of the air. And there came a voice to him; rise, Peter; kill and eat. But Peter said, Not so, Lord; for I have never eaten any thing that is common or unclean.

And the voice spake unto him again the second time, what God hath 'cleansed,' that call not thou common. This was done thrice: and the vessel was received up again into heaven."

In the General Council of Acts 15 concerning the debate over Christian Gentiles being circumcised after the manner of Moses as condition for salvation, Apostle James, the biological half-brother of Christ, makes this declaration: "For it seemed good to the Holy Ghost and to us, to lay upon you no greater burden than these necessary things; That ye abstain from meats offered to idols, (anything knowingly idolatrous or of the occult) and from blood (including cannibalism); from things strangled: (to kill by the squeezing of the throat, without blood shed and therefore eating the blood thereof), and from fornication (of any type): from which if he keep yourselves, ye shall do well. Fare ye well."

In part, this declaration from James via Holy Spirit and General Council, was also given to prevent offense to them persuaded from OT law.

Romans 14:1-3: "Him that is weak in the faith receive you, but not to doubtful disputations. For one believeth he may eat all things: another who is weak eateth herbs. Let not him that eateth despise him that eateth not; and let not him which eateth not judge him that eateth; for God hath received him."

Meats, as with anything in excess, can become unhealthy to our bodies and moderation should be exercised. Genesis 1:29 mentions, "And God said, Behold I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in the which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat."

If you are a vegetarian, don't impose your will on those that eat meat or vice versa. We should not knowingly defile the conscience of a weaker brother in Christ. Romans 14: 13-17 reads: "Let us not therefore judge one another any more: but judge this rather, that no man put a stumbling block or an occasion to fall in his brother's way. I know, and am persuaded by the Lord Jesus, that there is nothing unclean in itself: but to him that esteemed anything to be unclean, to him it is unclean.

"But if thy brother is grieved with thy meat, now walkest thou not charitably. Destroy not him with thy meat, for whom Christ died. Let not your good be evil spoken of. For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost."

In "rightly dividing the word of truth," we read: 1st Corinthians 6:13, "Meats for the belly, and the belly for meats: but God shall destroy both it and them." Proverbs 20:1 says, "Wine is a mocker, strong drink is raging: and whosoever is decieved thereby is not wise."

"If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed. For he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds," John 2: 10-11.

If thy knock at your door, don't answer! As Christ soon returns, false prophets will abound!



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