Wednesday, February 9, 2011

What Can Christians Eat?

In 1 Cor. 8 Paul discusses meat sacrificed to idols. Here we find that some immature believers were concerned that to eat such meat engaged them in idolatry. Paul’s main point is that there is no such thing as an idol; they are only wood and stone. Thus our consciences are at liberty to eat the meat. However, should there be present a “weaker brother” who has not yet grown beyond the point of superstition (v. 9-13), one should defer to him or her and not eat. 


A theological term that arises in connection with Paul’s discussion in 1 Cor. 8 is adiaphora. It comes from the Greek, ἀδιάφορα— “indifferent things.” Adiaphora in Christianity refer to matters not regarded as essential to the faith, but nevertheless as permissible for Christians or allowed in church. What is specifically considered adiaphora tends to depend on the specific theology of a Church in view.

In our day much is said about foods, especially in America, where a growing movement is a foot and that teaches abstinence from meat. People say that since God created Adam to eat food from the ground, and we are restored in Christ through salvation, and thus to our pre-fall condition, that the consistent Christian will eat only foods that come from the ground, as did Adam.

The argument is flawed on more levels than I will take the time to innumerate. However, the Bible, rather than restrict our diets, permits foods of all sorts (Acts 10-11; Col. 2:16; Gal. 4:9-10), bearing in mind that our bodies are the temple of the Holy Spirit—a fact that ought to caution us against over indulgence regarding food. The world imposes many rules on us. But Christianity liberates our conscience. Nonetheless, our freedom ought not to be used as an opportunity for the flesh. If the choice is between acting according to our freedom of conscience and offending a brother or sister, we must decline the use of our freedom and think more highly of others (“Love your neighbor as yourself”).

1 comment:

  1. The following is DOCTRINE: "If it's dead and red, you are well fed."