Dec 2022


  1. BLOOD




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The early Church provided the following laws for the new Gentile believers.  3 were related to eating.  “For it seemed good to the Holy Spirit, and to us, to lay upon you no greater burden than these necessary things: that you abstain from things offered to idols, from blood, from things strangled, and from sexual immorality. If you keep yourselves from these, you will do well” (Act 15:28-29).  In other words, it will not be well with you if you eat these things. Why were these laws given? Because they are difficult to find in the law given to Moses.  Therefore, the average new convert wouldn’t have known this,  thus they shared it with them.  “For the life of the flesh is in the blood” (Gen. 9:4) and thus don’t eat any life. People who received the Law of God, would have understood what Blood is – it is red and can be seen.  If we can squeeze meat with our fingers and our fingers are red then it is blood and not to be eaten. Some laws included:



Nowhere in scripture does it say we can eat raw meat, however there are a few references to boiling and roasting meat.  For example, to those Israelites about to leave Egypt. "And they shall eat the flesh in that night, roast with fire, and unleavened bread; and with bitter herbs they shall eat it.  Eat not of it raw, nor sodden at all with water, but roast with fire; his head with his legs, and with the purtenance thereof" (Exo. 12:8-9). 


Another example was around Eli’s evil sons.  “The priest's custom with the people was, that, when any man offered sacrifice, the priest's servant came, while the flesh was in seething (it wasn't cooked fully yet but in the process), with a fleshhook of three teeth in his hand; and he struck it into the pan, or kettle, or caldron, or pot; all that the fleshhook brought up the priest took for himself (notice the people were cooking the meat in different ways). So they did in Shiloh unto all the Israelites that came thither. Also before they burnt the fat, the priest's servant came, and said to the man that sacrificed, Give flesh to roast for the priest; for he will not have sodden (boiled) flesh of thee, but raw.” (1 Sam. 2:12-15).


One may say, “What about Elijah, the ravens brought him meat."  (1 King 17:6).  The ravens brought him bread and meat in the morning, and evening.  Please note it doesn't say Elijah ate it raw.  If a friend brought me raw meat, I would hope the base expectation would be that I would cook it and that I wouldn’t eat it raw.  If they believed I would eat it raw then they don’t know me, just like many don’t know God yet call Him their friend.


Just a thought: God could want us to cook it/roast it in order for the DNA and genes to be fragmented so that we can digest it better and/or not allow evil to access the life.  Raw meat may seem “lifeless”, but it can grow bacteria on it way more effectively than cooked meat.  Any science that opposes God’s Word is from the evil one.



What about Sushi - Raw fish?

Rabbis believe it is acceptable under the law because the blood in scripture is specifically related to the blood of animals and birds. “Moreover, ye shall eat no manner of blood, whether it be of fowl or of beast, in any of your dwellings” (Lev. 7:26).


Rashi - foremost Torah commentator - says on this verse:


My Answer:





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There are 2 chapters in the scripture calling out clearly what are unclean animals and forbidden to eat – God says they are an abomination to eat (Lev. 11; Deut. 14).  Is there any bigger word than abomination?!  Then God ends off with the context with, “For I am the Lord your God: ye shall therefore sanctify yourselves, and ye shall be holy; for I am holy” (Lev. 11:44).  The early church wouldn’t have missed this but would have obeyed it (2 Tim. 3:16).


Please note that neither Yeshua or any disciple ate anything that God said was unclean, abominable.  Yeshua didn’t make unclean food clean but made unclean people clean through His blood. In the millennium when Christ reigns what will God do to those who eat the detestable/abominable things. “For behold, the LORD will come with fire and with His chariots, like a whirlwind, to render His anger with fury, and His rebuke with flames of fire. For by fire and by His sword The LORD will judge all flesh; and the slain of the LORD shall be many. "Those who sanctify themselves and purify themselves, to go to the gardens after an idol in the midst, eating swine's flesh and the abomination and the mouse, shall be consumed together," says the LORD” (Isa 66:15-17). “A people that provoketh me to anger continually to my face; that sacrificeth in gardens, and burneth incense upon altars of brick; Which remain among the graves, and lodge in the monuments, which eat swine's flesh, and broth of abominable things is in their vessels” (Isa. 65:3-4).



Verses that seem to contradict or is it one’s understanding that is contradicted?

1.   “Not that which goeth into the mouth defileth a man; but that which cometh out of the mouth, this defileth a man” (Matt. 15:11). “In saying this, Jesus declared all foods clean” (Mark 7:19). Error statement: Based on this passage you can eat anything!


Response: First, let’s deal with the lies that were added to the scripture, “In saying this, Jesus declared all foods clean” (Mark 7:19). This section is not in any original text, this was added to deceive people. If this is what your translation has, you probably want to get rid of it as there are many more additions that are not scriptural. Beware of wolves in sheep clothing.


Regarding Matt. 15:11. This is about HOW they ate, not what they ate. The Greek word “defiled” is the actual word “unclean/dirty/contaminated” in reference to the outside. In context, it was about the disciples not washing their hands before eating and thus the food they touched was unclean – they contaminated it. For those who study words: This is a different Greek word “unclean” in Lev 11 regarding food (per the Septuagint G169). This word unclean in Lev means “garbage” unclean inside and outside.


Matt 15 & Mark 7 have nothing to do with things God said we should not eat - like pork or shell fish. If it had, then the Pharisees would have stoned him right there as it would have been against the Law of God. It was about the washing of the hands as unwashed hands contaminate the food and therefore it makes them unclean. This was in the Talmud (the oral law of the Pharisees) not the scripture. This was what Yeshua was against.


Yeshua and the Disciples ate food that was defined by God as food, not what the pagan’s defined as food – like humans, pork, shell fish, poison frogs, snakes etc. Peter, many years later, even confirmed that he had not eaten anything unclean, as per the law of God (Pork, Shell fish etc. Lev. 11; Deut. 14). However, their hands were dirty/not washed/contaminated, therefore the Pharisees said the disciples were defiling (polluting) themselves. Yeshua turns the Pharisees statement unto them by correcting them and then implying that the Pharisees are defiled by what is coming out of their mouth (from evil thoughts). They are defiled by what they were saying. Yeshua then later explains this statement to His disciples Matt. 15:20. “... to eat with UNWASHEN hands defileth not a man.” This confirms that His statement had nothing to do with eating food that God designed us not to eat, and nothing to do with eating things sacrificed to idols.


If one thinks this, then besides the fact that they are sinning, they will have many NT passages that will contradict this. For example: Yeshua rebukes the church leaders in the book of Revelation, for allowing people to eat things sacrificed to idols (Rev. 2:14,20), this is something that goes into the mouth! During the millennium reign of Christ, this is what the Lord says (Isa. 66:17), “They that sanctify themselves, and purify themselves in the gardens behind one tree in the midst, eating SWINE’S flesh, and the abomination, and the mouse, shall be consumed together, saith the Lord.” This is something that goes into the mouth! The early church gives 3 laws about abstaining from eating certain things, things that enter the mouth! From blood, things strangled and things offered to idols (Acts 15:29) so that it be well with them. In other words, it will not be well with them if they don’t!

Think about it, if the Pharisees believed Yeshua said eat anything, including pigs, they would have stoned Him on the spot but, this was never brought up as an issue against Christ then or later. Everything was always against the Talmud like “how” He kept the Sabbath or “how” to eat, not what they ate.


It reminds me of today where churches keep the commandments of man, like the washing or sanitizing of hands and go against the commands of God and serve pork. Hypocrites!



2.  “Wherein were all manner of fourfooted 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 anything that is common or unclean” (Acts 10:12-14). Error statement: Based on this passage God is giving us all permission to eat unclean animals, insects or birds!


Response: So you are obviously greater than Peter because Peter didn’t get that interpretation! Nor do you understand that every time animals are used in the scripture it is in reference to people or the impact on people. Maybe I should not cast my pearls before pigs (Matt. 7:6) --- or is it literal pigs. When Pharaoh had the dream of the thin cows eating the fat cows (Gen. 41:4), did he force feed fat cows into thin cows? No, same with the vision given to Peter. This wasn’t rocket science for Peter to figure out. He knew the OT and would have understood it. Peter knew the interpretation was NOT about eating unclean animals but that this message was to give him license to go to the unclean people (non-Israelites), Cornelius. Peter tells Cornelius, “You know how unlawful it is for a Jewish man to keep company with or go to one of another nation. But God has shown me that I should NOT CALL ANY MAN common or unclean” (Acts 10:28). Then later Peter repeats the situation and the interpretation to the early church, they were silent (Acts 11:1-18).


Those who know God’s word like Peter and the early Church, know that this has nothing to do with a double meaning of eating unclean things like pork, poisonous frogs, humans. But it has everything to do with the fact that “God has also granted to the Gentiles repentance to life” (Acts 11:18). Now if anyone adds to this interpretation or says something against what Peter said about the vision they are speaking against God’s messenger who clearly told us what this meant.

Remember what happened to Ananias and Sapphira who lied to Peter, they died. Peter said to them, “Thou hast not lied unto men, but unto God.” How much worse is it to add an interpretation that Peter never added.


3. "Every moving thing that lives shall be food for you…" (Gen. 9:3). Error Statement: Based on this passage you can eat anything that moves!


Answer: Can you eat humans, don’t they move?  If you say no, then what are you using to make that statement?  For true interpretation to exist one must look at the person who is getting the message from God and what is his understanding.  For example, if I said to my friend that he can eat anything in my house, I wouldn’t expect him to eat my furniture or dishes.  If I said, he could eat anything in my fridge, I wouldn’t expect him to eat anything that was rotten, any powder that is used to keep the fridge smelling nice, my fridge filter or any container.  Now if there was someone who came from a foreign land who I didn’t know, then I would be very specific or just take the food out. An open statement is only reserved for those who know the person well.  Noah knew God and God knew what Noah would have understood.  Keep in mind Noah already knew what were clean and unclean animals before it was written down by Moses (Gen. 7:2, 8).  God didn’t need to define it like He had to for the Israelites who had spent so much time in Egypt (the world) like so many Christians do today. 


How did Noah know what were clean and unclean animals?  God could have told him directly or it was passed down from Adam who ate from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.  Noah was the 10th from Adam.  Enos, Adam’s grandson, was still alive during the time of Noah.  The word “unclean” is a soft word, the actual meaning of the word is “dirty, contaminated.” In other words, God told Noah how many “contaminated” and “pure” animals were to enter the ark.  And when God says eat, which one do you think Noah would have eaten?



4.   “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” (1 Tim. 4:3-5). Error Statement: Based on this passage if you abstain from meats then you are following the doctrine of demons!


Answer: Please note abstaining from meats which god created to be received with thanksgiving.  What meat did God create to be received with thanksgiving?  Lev 11 & Deut. 14.  Therefore, abstain from eating a cow because some places in India say it is a sin, when God said you can eat it, is a doctrine of demons.  Similar cultural and religious practices were in Asia minor (per the context of 1 Tim. 4).  Be very careful calling the word of God a doctrine of demons as some have suggested regarding Lev. 11 & Deut. 14.  These are in fact the very verses Paul is referring to “which God has created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and KNOW the truth.”  Some may say, Yeshua is truth.  Yeshua is truth, therefore look at His example, He never once ate unclean animals.   “For every creature of God is good, and nothing to be refused, if it be received with thanksgiving.” Not that every creature on the planet is good for food, like a poisonous snake.  The word “for” is also the word “because” referring to the previous sentence.  Therefore, every creature that God has created for food is good and not to be refused.  Then continues to tell us why, because it is set apart (sanctified) by:



5. “Which stood only in meats and drinks, and divers washings, and carnal ordinances, imposed on them until the time of reformation.” (Heb. 9:10). Error Statement: Based on this passage, the restriction on meats and drinks have all been done away with!


Answer: This is referring to offerings in the Temple and Sacrifices – meat and drink offering.  “…was a figure for the time then present, in which were offered both gifts and sacrifices, that could not make him that did the service perfect, as pertaining to the conscience” (Heb. 9:10). 



6. “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…  I know, and am persuaded by the Lord Jesus, that there is nothing unclean of itself: but to him that esteemeth any thing to be unclean, to him it is unclean…  For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost” (Rom. 14:3, 14, 17). Error Statement: Based on this passage don’t judge anyone in the things they eat, if I don’t esteem it unclean then it isn’t and the Kingdom is not in meat and drink so don’t focus on it. 


Answer: This entire section starts off with a statement by Paul in verse 1, “Do not dispute over doubtful things”.  The word of God from Genesis to Malachi, what they used, is not doubtful, it is very clear.  Doubtful things are those things that the scripture doesn’t provide an answer to.  Doubtful things would include, days people chose to serve God (not the day God chose), when to fast and how long to fast, how do we know if the food is sacrificed to idols or not – can we eat it when we don’t know.  These are doubtful things that these passages in Romans 14 are referring to.  It is not referring to having the “freedom” to eat unclean animals, blood or eat knowing the food is sacrificed to idols for these are clear in the scripture.  When one rereads Romans 14 based on fasting and recognising whether the food at markets is sacrificed, then it will become clear. 


Passages like Acts 15:29 (do not eat Blood, things strangled, things offered to idols) will not contradict passages like “I know and am convinced by the Lord Yeshua that there is nothing unclean of itself; but to him who considers anything to be unclean, to him it is unclean.”  If it was a license to eating anything unclean then Paul would be contradicting both the early Church leaders (Acts  15:29) and Yeshuas words, “I have a few things against you, because you have there those who hold the doctrine of Balaam, who taught Balak to put a stumbling block before the children of Israel, to eat things sacrificed to idols, and to commit sexual immorality” (Rev 2:14).  Paul is not contradicting the verses, it is one’s understanding of scripture where the contradiction takes place.  Correct interpretation is when all interpretations are in harmony and there are no tension points.


It is correct that the Kingdom of God is not in meat and drink, meaning the Kingdom of God is not physical but spiritual.  The righteous, as Paul says, does not come by anything or anyone else except by Holy Spirit.  Just like Yahweh says “I will give them one heart, and I will put a new spirit within them, and take the stony heart out of their flesh, and give them a heart of flesh, that they may walk in My statutes and keep My judgments and do them; and they shall be My people, and I will be their God. But as for those whose hearts follow the desire for their detestable things and their abominations, I will recompense their deeds on their own heads” (Ezekiel 11: 9-21). (For a verse by verse commentary on Romans 14 - see below).



7. "Cursed is everyone who does not continue in all things which are written in the book of the law, to do them… Therefore the law was our tutor to bring us to Christ, that we might be justified by faith” (Gal. 3:11, 24). Error Statement: Based on this passage we are not under the law, therefore we can eat what we want. 


Answer: If we are not under the law can we commit adultery? What about eating things sacrificed to Idols?  Or what about having sex with Animals as this is not in the New Testament but in the book of Moses? So what is Paul referring to?  He is referring to the “works of the law”, “the ordinances” (Gal. 3:2).  This is everything related to the Temple and sacrifices used to cover one’s sins.  These Galatians who came to Yeshua believed they needed to go to the Temple and sacrifice animals to cover their sins.  The only way for the Gentile believers to participate would be to become Jewish, it starts with circumcision.  Therefore, the book of Galatians talks about circumcision 12 times.  Paul is shocked that they have forgotten about the reason for Christ, His sacrifice for sins and the 1st verse of Gal. 3 expresses this, “O foolish Galatians, who hath bewitched you, that ye should not obey the truth, before whose eyes Jesus Christ hath been evidently set forth, crucified among you?” (Gal. 3:1).  “Therefore the law was our tutor to bring us to Christ, that we might be justified by faith”…in Christ (Gal. 3:24-25).  Temporary Justification by the law were by the sacrifices, it was not permanent like that in Christ. Paul is not giving licence to forsake the law of commandments which identifies sins and which Paul preaches we are to observe (Rom. 3:20; 2 Tim. 3:16).  But justification doesn’t come with the law – that is with the law of ordinances which is contained in the Temple, Sacrifices, Festivals and Priesthood.  These were only shadows for the substance is now found in Christ alone (Heb. 10:1-10).  Therefore, we are sinning if we eat pork but not justified if we don’t eat pork.  We are only living righteously as we ought.  We repent for eating pork and Christ’s blood forgives us.  How can we repent if we don’t believe it is a sin?  Like the Apostle John said, “Whosoever committeth sin transgresseth also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law. And ye know that he was manifested to take away our sins; and in him is no sin. Whosoever abideth in him sinneth not: whosoever sinneth hath not seen him, neither known him. Little children, let no man deceive you: he that doeth righteousness is righteous, even as he is righteous. He that committeth sin is of the devil; for the devil sinneth from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil” (1 John 3:4-8).



8. "Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross; ….Let no man therefore judge you in meat, or in drink, or in respect of an holyday, or of the new moon, or of the sabbath days: Which are a shadow of things to come; but the body is of Christ” (Col. 2:14-17).  Error Statement: We can’t judge others forwhat they eat or drink.


Quick Answer: The entire context is in reference to Yeshua "having forgiven you all trespasses" (v13) and no need to have animal sacrifices and festivals to cover sin. It has nothing to do with actual food to eat and the 7th Day Sabbath. It has everything to do with things to cover sin - Festival/annual Sabbaths (John 19:31) are based on new moons and all sacrifices comprising 2 factors: meat and drink offerings (Eze 45:17) - these cover sin.

“While as the first tabernacle was yet standing: Which was a figure for the time then present, in which were offered both gifts and sacrifices, that could not make him that did the service perfect, as pertaining to the conscience; Which stood only in meats and drinks, and divers washings, and carnal ordinances, imposed on them until the time of reformation. But Christ being come an high priest of good things to come, by a greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to say, not of this building” (Heb. 9:8-11).

Think about it: statements like not eating certain foods would have contradicted the Early Church (Acts 15:29). Paul didn't contradict the Early Church.



9. “Let no man beguile you of your reward in a voluntary humility and worshipping of angels, intruding into those things which he hath not seen, vainly puffed up by his fleshly mind… wherefore if ye be dead with Christ from the rudiments of the world, why, as though living in the world, are ye subject to ordinances, (Touch not; taste not; handle not; Which all are to perish with the using;) after the commandments and doctrines of men? (Col. 2:18-22).  Error Statement: We can eat what we want because we are not under the rudiment elements of the world.


Answer: What about tasting Blood of an animal, or tasting things offered to idols per the law given by the early Church to gentiles (Acts 15:29)?  These are commandments from God.  Paul has just finished talking about the law of Ordinances (Col. 2:14-17) and then he talks about those things that come from the commandments and doctrines of men, “after the commandments and doctrines of men” (Col. 2:22 – it is not the commandments and doctrines of God).  These commandments and doctrines of men can also be found in Jewish Talmud which includes washings, things not to touch or taste. 


10.  Jesus said, “…Into whatsoever city ye enter, and they receive you, eat such things as are set before you” (Luke 10:8).  Error statement: Therefore you can eat whatever anyone puts in front of you, including pork!


Answer: What would they disciples have understood by that statement?  Do you thing they would have eaten a human leg (like some in the Amazon), or poisonous frog or a piece of wood or plate that the food was served on?  Of course not, therefore context is needed.  The disciples would have known what it was acceptable to eat or not based on the word of God as they were Israelites.  In addition, this statement by Yeshua was specifically to those He appointed to go into the cities of Israel, just like He said to His disciples, “Go not into the way of the Gentiles, and into any city of the Samaritans enter ye not: But go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel” (Matt. 10:5-6).  They would have known what was unclean from the Torah and it was passed down through the centuries.  They wouldn’t be serving unclean animals.  Peter who was part of the groups Yeshua sent out, was shocked when God told him ~10 years after Yeshua was resurrected (Acts 10) to eat unclean – “Not so, Lord; for I have never eaten any thing that is common or unclean” (Acts 10:14).  He still didn’t eat it because He knew what God meant.  Therefore Peter never ate anything unclean nor thought it to be acceptable. 


Why did the Israelites keep herds of pigs (Mark 5:11), if pigs are forbidden to eat?


Answer: Pigs are large garbage eaters, to help keep things clean.  In addition, during the 1st Century, Israel was occupied by Rome and Romans ate pork.  Therefore, many of the Jewish farmed pigs to supply the Romans with food.  Then one might ask – therefore they sinned because they touched the pigs!  It is not a sin to touch pigs, it is sin when one eats their flesh (abomination – Lev. 11).   






Chew the Cud and Part the Hoof

Fish with Fins and Scales


Birds With Clean Characteristics







Bison (buffalo)


Perch (or bream)




Black pomfret (or monchong)

Pike (or pickerel or jack)



Cattle (beef, veal)


Pollack (or pollock or Boston bluefish)



Deer (venison)








Guinea fowl




Sardine (or pilchard)










Silver hake (or whiting)





Smelt (or frost fish or ice fish)





Snapper (or ebu, jobfish, lehi, onaga, opakapaka or uku)

Prairie chicken















Swan (TBD)


Sheep (lamb, mutton)











Herring (or alewife)

Trout (or weakfish)






Types of locusts that may include crickets and grasshoppers



Mackerel (or corbia)

Turbot (except European turbot)




Mahimahi (or dorado, dolphinfish [not to be confused with the mammal dolphin])








Unclean Animals











Llama (alpaca, vicuña)









Pig (hog, bacon, ham, lard, pork, most sausage and pepperoni)







Crayfish (crawfish, crawdad)



















Rabbit (hare)






Shrimp (prawn)





Soft body



















Snail (escargot)






Squid (calamari)





Sea mammals













Donkey (ass)






All insects except some in the locust










Without Fins and Scales


Water hen


Zebra (quagga)


Birds of Prey, Scavengers and Others




















European Turbot































Sturgeon (includes most caviar)







Tuna (or ahi, aku, albacore, bonito or tombo)
















Why is tuna unclean as it has microscopic scales?  

Based on whose definition are these scales.  If these were scales then every living thing has microscopic scales, including dolphins, sharks and whales.   The Biblical definition of scales is something that is visible to the eye.  They Israelites who received it would have understood this and this would have been something they would be able to remove with the scrapping of a knife.

What about Jewish people saying Tuna is clean?  They are wrong with many things, even major points such as Yeshua being the Messiah. 




AUDIO for this Section (computer rendering)

Is it true that only mature Christians can eat food sacrificed to idols, or are they deceived and actually sinning?  Food today, that would be considered as food offered or dedicated or sacrificed to devils or idols, would be Halal food, food at various pagan festivals such as Diwali, Halloween, Chinese New Year etc. 



The Early Church (Apostles and Elders) provided a letter (Acts 15:23) to those Gentiles who call upon the name of the Lord.  They sent the letter via four men, one of them being Paul.  The letter was to be read to new converts and did not require further explanation.  Paul wouldn’t have contradicted what the early Church elders said.


Acts 15:20 “we write unto them, that they abstain from pollutions of idols, and from fornication, and from things strangled, and from blood….”; Acts 15:29 “That ye abstain from meats offered to idols, and from blood, and from things strangled, and from fornication: from which if ye keep yourselves, ye shall do well…”  The Greek word for “meats offered to idols” is “eidōlóthuton” (G1494) and means “whatever is sacrificed or offered to an idol”.  Greek word for “abstain” means “hold self back from…” meaning do not touch, and more specifically based on the context, do not eat.  It will not be well with them if they did eat things offered to idols as per the letter.


Where did the early Church get this from?  Holy Spirit (Acts 15:28) shared it with them, and they would have known what God said previously (2 Tim 3:16).  The Gentiles might have missed or ignored this in the reading or preaching of Moses. As it is only in a few places.  






John confirms to all, 1 John 5:21, “Little children, keep yourselves from idols” (this would include eating things offered to idols, and everything associated with idols).




If one is not convinced by the perspective from the early Church, nor by John, then Yeshua, who is our Lord and Saviour, made it clear in ~95AD.  There isn’t a people more mature or knowledgeable than the leader of a church.  Yeshua rebukes those who are mature in the faith, the leaders of the 2 churches (like He is doing today), for specifically allowing others to eat things sacrificed to idols.  It seems pretty clear. 


Reader, please understand if there is ever a contradiction in your mind between Paul or Yeshua’s words, always lean on what Yeshua said.  It is the safest thing for you to do.  Paul didn’t die for you, Yeshua did.  Yeshua is your Lord and Saviour, not Paul.  If you were in the 1st Century this is what you would have done. You would not have eaten food offered to idols. 


Yeshua said to the leader at Pergamos Rev 2:14 “But I have a few things against thee, because thou hast there them that hold the doctrine of Balaam, who taught Balac to cast a stumblingblock before the children of Israel, to eat things sacrificed unto idols, and to commit fornication…“


Yeshua said to the leader at Thyatira Rev. 2:20 “Notwithstanding, I have a few things against thee, because thou sufferest that woman Jezebel, which calleth herself a prophetess, to teach and to seduce my servants to commit fornication, and to eat things sacrificed unto idols.” 




Did Paul contradict Yeshua’s words about not eating things sacrificed to idols, and the early church’s words about abstaining from things offered to idols?  Or is it one’s understanding that is in contradiction?  If there is an actual contradiction, surely the above verses should be enough to abstain from touching or eating things offered to idols!  As the decision-making hierarchy is first Yeshua, then early church leaders, then Paul.  We all know Paul is not contradicting Yeshua or the early church.  One needs to understand Paul’s teaching in light of Yeshua and the early church’s teaching. 


Some background on Corinth, Paul had already shared the letter from the early church, …”to abstain from things offered to idols” with those in Corinth.  Now many in Corinth were concerned if the food they were eating was food sacrificed to idols (doubtful things, similar to those in Rome Rom. 14:1).  Others found out later it was offered to idols, or while they were eating and their conscience was hurt.  They felt separate from God and didn’t know what to you.  Thus, Paul addresses these people who “potentially ate” and those who “found out later or during them eating it was sacrificed to idols”. 




1 Cor. 8:4-13 This statement doesn’t stand alone as if it is a law of God by itself, but within the council of God’s word.  For example, this is not giving license to eat human flesh, nor to eat unclean foods, such as Pork, because it is an abomination (Deut. 14:3-8). The context Paul is referring to is those who are eating things offered to idols.


Commentary on - “As concerning therefore the eating of those things that are offered in sacrifice unto idols, we know that an idol is nothing in the world….. Howbeit there is not in every man that knowledge: for some with conscience of the idol unto this hour eat it as a thing offered unto an idol; and their conscience being weak is defiled.”  Paul is not contradicting what he later writes when he references Gentiles sacrificing to devils and that we cannot partake of the Lord’s sacrifice and partake of that sacrificed to devils… this is not nothing 1 Cor. 10:20-22. What is nothing in the world?


He is specifically referring to an idol as nothing in this world.  He is not saying sacrifices, or being part of the festivals, or eating those things that are sacrificed are nothing.  An idol has a mouth but doesn’t speak, or legs and doesn’t walk, these are nothing in the world (like the Psalmist Psa. 135:15-17).  Not every new believer has this knowledge.  What knowledge? The knowledge that God created all things and an idol is nothing.  Thus, when they eat being conscious of the idol, this constitutes as a weak conscience, and they are defiled.  A strong conscience would be one who knows God is above all, yet wouldn’t eat things knowing that it was sacrificed to idols because they fear God (1 Cor. 10:21-22).  However, if they did eat unknowingly and then discovered that the food was sacrificed to idols, they would then stop, but they would not condemn themselves, because it is set apart by the word of God and prayer (1 Tim 4:5).


Commentary on – “But take heed lest by any means this liberty of yours become a stumblingblock to them that are weak.  For if any man see thee which hast knowledge sit at meat in the idol's temple, shall not the conscience of him which is weak be emboldened to eat those things which are offered to idols; And through thy knowledge shall the weak brother perish, for whom Christ died?  


If one who is mature in the faith and knows that God created all things, and that an idol is nothing and lays down in an idol’s Temple – he could lead a weaker brother astray.  The Greek word that is translated “sit at meat” is actually to “lay down” (e.g. Acts 28:8), implying to lie down to eat.  It does not mean that he was actually eating food sacrificed to idols, or that he was eating their food.  They could have brought their own food and eaten it in the temple.  The point is that the weaker brother may not know and thus be encouraged to eat things offered to idols.  Just like a Pastor coming out of a brothel, the weaker brother may want to help, but will fall.


If Paul is saying that whether you eat things offered to idols or not, it makes no difference, then this would contradict the early Church Acts 15:29, and what he shared years earlier as he carried this message to Corinth.  If they abstained from eating things offered to idols, they will do well (Acts 15:29), implying it would not be well if they didn’t.  It would also contradict Yeshua when He rebuked the 2 Elders and the church, for permitting people to eat things offered to idols (Acts 2:14, 20) and where the woman, Jezebel who taught this, was cast into a sick bed by Yeshua (Rev. 2:22).


The first reason Paul gives is that a weak conscience of another would lead them to sin, and that should make us not eat.  We don’t want others to stumble.  He is not promoting eating things offered to idols.  This is not the only reason.  The second reason is that the believers need to understand these sacrifices are sacrificed to the devils.  When they partake, they are fellowshipping with devils and provoking the Lord.




1 Cor. 10:20-22 “I say, that the things which the Gentiles sacrifice, they sacrifice to devils, and not to God: and I would not that ye should have fellowship with devils. Ye cannot drink the cup of the Lord, and the cup of devils: ye cannot be partakers of the Lord's table, and of the table of devils.  Do we provoke the Lord to jealousy? are we stronger than he?


He affirms that those things that the gentiles sacrifice, they are sacrificing to devils and not to God.  And a believer should not consciously eat those things sacrificed to devils “Ye cannot …” (1 Cor. 10:21-22).  So what happens if you unknowingly eat things offered to idols, or part way through you find out, do you condemn yourself? 


1 Cor 10:25-31 “Whatsoever is sold in the shambles (meat market), that eat, asking no question for conscience sake: For the earth is the Lord's, and the fulness thereof. If any of them that believe not bid you to a feast, and ye be disposed to go; whatsoever is set before you, eat, asking no question for conscience sake. But if any man say unto you, this is offered in sacrifice unto idols, eat not for his sake that shewed it, and for conscience sake: for the earth is the Lord's, and the fulness thereof: Conscience, I say, not thine own, but of the other: for why is my liberty judged of another man's conscience? For if I by grace be a partaker, why am I evil spoken of for that for which I give thanks? Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God”


Notice this isn’t a believer that is consciously eating things sacrificed to idols as some would want you to believe, but they find out while eating it or afterwards.  Many people found out after they had eaten it, or whilst they were eating it, that it was sacrificed to idols.  They knew very well the commandments of the early church and this is what Paul shared with them – do not eat things offered to idols.  This was not in dispute, so what do they do if they find out after they have eaten the food?


If they found out during or after they had eaten, as per the context of 1 Cor. 10:25-31, then they would stop and not continue to eat it, nor confirm it was okay to continue.   Stop eating that food, for the sake of the person who told you or served you, and those around, so that their own conscience is not defiled.  Don’t beat yourself up.  Paul was setting their heart at ease. 


They were convicted and felt dirty (defiled).  The mature Christian would know (have knowledge) that it is sanctified by the word of God (e.g. beef is ok to eat per Deut. 14 – the things that God created to be received with Thanksgiving) and prayer (1 Tim 4:3-5).  


Then the question one could ask: “Could this imply that a mature believer could eat things offered to idols, in secret, when no one was around?” Paul didn’t say this, in fact there is no statement where Paul says believers can consciously eat things offered to idols.  He actually states the opposite “I would not that ye should...” (1 Cor. 10:20-22; Acts 21:25).  If they have eaten the food, then they need to repent.  But if they find out later or are unsure, then they should not let their heart be convicted, and should eat unto the Lord.  For Yeshua’s words are clear – do not to eat things offered to idols (Rev. 2:14, 20), similarly with the early church (Acts 15:29).



2 Cor. 6:14-18, “…. what communion hath light with darkness? And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel? And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you. And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty.”  (Paul quoting from various passages including Isaiah 52:11).


1 Thess. 5:22 Abstain from all appearance of evil.  (This would include eating food sacrificed to idols or food at their festivals).


Towards the end of his ministry, Paul affirms the message given by the early church leaders to new Gentile converts, “Keep themselves from things offered to idols, and from blood, and from strangled, and from fornication.” (Act 21:25).