attend [ uh–tend ]
to be present at: to attend a lecture; to attend church. To go with as a concomitant or result; accompany: Fever may attend a cold. Success attended her hard work. To take care of; minister to; devote one’s services to: The nurse attended the patient daily. To take care or charge: to attend to a sick person. To apply oneself: to attend to one’s work. To pay attention; listen or watch attentively; direct one’s thought; pay heed: to attend to a speaker.
“Rejoice with them that do rejoice, and weep with them that weep.” Romans 12:15
Food is medicine
“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. And to every beast of the earth, and to every fowl of the air, and to every thing that creepeth upon the earth, wherein there is life, I have given every green herb for meat: and it was so.” Genesis 1:29-30
Moving from Milk to Meat…
Our life is a Divine gift, and all that supports this life is a gift; so wouldn’t we want to attend to these gifts with some level of gratitude and stewardship?
A righteous man regardeth the life of his beast: but the tender mercies of the wicked are cruel. He that tilleth his land shall be satisfied with bread: but he that followeth vain persons is void of understanding. Proverbs 12:10-11
We’ve all heard the cliché, “You are what you eat.” Well, this may be an overused term, but it’s true. A better statement would be, “You are what you consume”. This means anything you watch, listen to, put into or put onto your body.
Most of us can agree that television, movies, music and mainstream media is set up to program the minds of it’s viewers. There is definitely an agenda; and one that is nefarious.
But, consider for a moment, the possibility that our clothing trends, the churches we attend and even the food we eat has been “engineered” to fit this agenda. Why wouldn’t it?
Before you shun this as a conspiracy theory, consider this as a conspiracy FACT.
As Christians, we know all too well that we live in a world that CONSPIRES AGAINST Jesus Christ; and therefore conspires against us. Point proven.
To satisfy fact, I’ll provide some circumstantial evidence in question form:
Why are most advertisements and commercials for fast food and not produce?
Why do doctors prescribe pharmaceuticals to “control” diseases that can be abated by lifestyle modifications?
Why are Americans seduced into maintaining acres of pristinely manicured lawns, instead of planting acres of sustainable food gardens?
Why do we idolize those who dance, sing and bounce balls; and condemn those who keep peace and protect us from criminals?
Why are pastors in our churches looking more like strippers and rock stars; while talking more like daytime talk show hosts, spouting pop psychology?
Why are we disgusted by the exploitation of children; but buy Disney movies, Barbie and Brat dolls, Manga “art” and sexually provocative clothing for our children?
Idolatry, lust, immodesty, gluttony, sloth and covetousness are things that the world promotes, and sadly Christians have been allowing it into their homes and consuming it into their beings. That which was once unacceptable has now become “normal”.
What we let into our lives and our bodies IS relevant AND it matters to God.
“Oh…You don’t know me, I have this. God knows my heart. He doesn’t care about the clothes I wear or the movies I watch; besides…everyone else is doing it!”
Excuse me, but…read the Bible much?
“Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and 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.” 2 Corinthians 6:14-18.
“The eye is the lamp of the body. So, if your eye is healthy, your whole body will be full of light, but if your eye is bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light in you is darkness, how great is the darkness!” Matthew 6:22-23
Likewise, if we as believers rigorously watch dog everything we do and it causes us to elevate ourselves above others; or cease from ministering to and loving others, we need to seriously check ourselves.
“Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal. And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity, I am nothing. And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, and have not charity, it profiteth me nothing.” 1 Corinthians 13:1-3
You see, Jesus didn’t contend with the Pharisees for teaching others to keep God’s Law, as Jesus Himself kept God’s Law. He contended with the Pharisees for being hypocrites. They weren’t able to keep all of God’s Law perfectly (nobody can); but they had a double standard; not having mercy on others for the same sins they themselves, committed. They were guilty of pride, not loving others, but moreover; rejecting their True Messiah. They also managed to cook up extra laws and traditions that God didn’t approve of; in order to maintain power and superiority over others.
“For I desired mercy, and not sacrifice; and the knowledge of God more than burnt offerings.” Hosea 6:6
In regards to God’s Law, I believe God’s Word. ALL OF IT. If my Father in Heaven wanted me to only read the New Testament, He wouldn’t have given me a complete Holy Bible to glean from. Within the entire Bible, I find instruction. I find answers. I find direction. I find Grace, and I find Jesus.
And the “controversial” subject of food is no exception. Our Father has lovingly provided some definitive guidelines concerning what we are to eat and what we are not. The guidelines are not to be used to judge, divide, nor compare ourselves with others; instead they’re given to us to preserve, protect and strengthen our constitutions; so that we may be more able-bodied to glorify and serve our Creator.
“The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.” John 10:10.
For me, this is not about being under submission to Jewish dietary law, nor is it about fitting into a cult. This is about loving the Lord with all our minds, so that we willingly understand His practical, common sense for living; and make a mindful choice to either follow or not. How you choose to use your free will is your business, but for me and my temple, I choose to follow His Word over the opinions of men. Besides, the Father created my body; so wouldn’t HE have the best advice on how to operate and maintain my body?
“For the life of the flesh is in the blood” Leviticus 17:11.
The digestive process is basically a bunch of chemicals reacting with each other. The chemicals (ingredients) in our food react with the chemistry of our bodies. Ultimately, what we eat enters into and reacts with our bloodstream. This isn’t rocket science, but it’s science nonetheless.
So, it’s logical to deduce that since the life of flesh is in the blood, shouldn’t we be concerned with what ALTERS it’s chemistry?
Far too often, believers in Christ Jesus bicker and bitterly contend with each other over whether certain foods should or shouldn’t be eaten. Sure, in light of The Gospel, discussions concerning food can seem superfluous. However, when I witness Christian’s exhorting against scripture and Godly WISDOM as “works-based salvation”; my discernment alarms go off.
Before I was Born Again, I spent many years studying exercise, nutrition and natural health. After I was Born Again, I was stunned to find how scientifically RELEVANT and ACCURATE the Bible is concerning food. (And many other things). According to some secular nutritional doctors and researchers, the foods that the Lord has deemed unclean (pig, crustaceans, catfish), just happen to chemically react with ALL human blood types (O, A, B, AB) as a TOXIN. Check out “Eat right for your blood type”…it’s interesting.
I’m simply in AWE of Our Father, His Creation and His Provision.
The guidelines for healthy living, as stated in the Bible, shouldn’t be a point of sharp contention for folks, but it is nonetheless. It’s helpful to realize that every person who is in Christ, comes from a uniquely different background than anyone else and is at a different place in their walk than everyone else.
And…we all have different bodies with different health issues.
It grieves me to hear pastors, preachers and teachers in the Faith slam, demean and insult other believers for seeking a deeper relationship with The Father through observing things that Jesus Himself observed; things such as Biblically clean foods, the Sabbath, fasting and separating oneself from man-made holidays (Christmas being one example).
Seriously. I’ve watched God fearing men of Faith literally puff their chests out in angry pride and arrogance while they recite scripture that defends their “right” to eat PIGS. One even demeaned vegetarians!
“Him that is weak in the faith receive ye, but not to doubtful disputations. For one believeth that 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. Who art thou that judgest another man’s servant? to his own master he standeth or falleth. Yea, he shall be holden up: for God is able to make him stand.One man esteemeth one day above another: another esteemeth every day alike. Let every man be fully persuaded in his own mind. He that regardeth the day, regardeth it unto the Lord; and he that regardeth not the day, to the Lord he doth not regard it. He that eateth, eateth to the Lord, for he giveth God thanks; and he that eateth not, to the Lord he eateth not, and giveth God thanks. For none of us liveth to himself, and no man dieth to himself. For whether we live, we live unto the Lord; and whether we die, we die unto the Lord: whether we live therefore, or die, we are the Lord’s. For to this end Christ both died, and rose, and revived, that he might be Lord both of the dead and living.” Romans 14:1-9
Sure, under Grace, we all have the liberty to eat whatever. However, is it wise?
“Let us not therefore judge one another any more: but judge this rather, that no man put a stumblingblock or an occasion to fall in his brother’s way. 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. But if thy brother be grieved with thy meat, now walkest thou not charitably. Destroy not him with thy meat, for whom Christ died. Let not then 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. For he that in these things serveth Christ is acceptable to God, and approved of men. Let us therefore follow after the things which make for peace, and things wherewith one may edify another. For meat destroy not the work of God. All things indeed are pure; but it is evil for that man who eateth with offence. It is good neither to eat flesh, nor to drink wine, nor any thing whereby thy brother stumbleth, or is offended, or is made weak.” Romans 14:13-21.
FOOD should NOT be a point of division for brethren. I don’t condemn anyone for eating certain foods, or rejecting any Old Testament laws. We are to work out our OWN salvation with fear and trembling. Eating clean doesn’t make you a better person, nor does it save your soul. It can…however…save you from things like: diabetes, heart disease, cancer, obesity and other ailments.
ONLY FAITH IN JESUS CHRIST THE MESSIAH SAVES SOULS.
The more I read and seek to learn and meditate upon God’s Word, the more attentive I become to ALL of God’s Word. This is not boasting. All of this is ONLY BECAUSE OF HIS GRACE AND MERCY; ANY OF WHICH I DON’T DESERVE. The more Grace I witness, the more gratitude and reverence I want to give Him. My love and awe for Him increases. But, at the end of the day, it’s not about my love, it’s about His Love.
He saved me from eternal damnation. He made me His Child. He allowed me to learn from His Word. I don’t deserve anything from Him, but judgement. I’m grateful to my Father and therefore desire to serve my MASTER.
Yes, this means that I refrain from eating (as much as possible), that which He deems unclean. This doesn’t *POOF* turn me into a Jew… nor does it place me on the waiting list for the best condos in His Kingdom.
Although we all far short from the perfection of God; there are those people who, by the Grace of God, have lived a more obedient life. Therefore, they may have never had to be pulled by their skins from hell. Those folks may have difficulty relating to this, and that’s okay. We all have a purpose to serve others; and can do so in different ways.
However, what befuddles me is this: Why aren’t we as Believers more curious as to why God deems certain foods unclean? If He is the omniscient Creator of all, why are we so indifferent to His Word concerning these seemingly mundane things?
When Jesus said that loving God with all my mind, heart and soul was the first and greatest commandment, I felt it was important enough to investigate the meaning of this. Meditate upon it. He said that all the law and prophets hang upon loving Him first.
If there is a scripture to study and meditate upon concerning what He wants…this is a good one, don’t you think?