One could maintain that the requirements are still in effect if one could find a basis for them in natural law--that is, a reason why it is contrary to human nature to consume blood or fat. In the case of blood, there are such things as blood-borne illnesses which could be contracted, particularly by eating uncooked blood, but not all blood is infected. Further, there are also food-borne illnesses in general, which can also be contracted, particularly by eating uncooked food. The case of fat is even harder to argue, because fat is one of the principal sources of calories in our food the other two being proteins and carbohydrates.
In fact, fat is the most calorie-rich and most flavor-enhancing of the three.
The Blood of Christ Across the Centuries
This points to something else, which also applies to blood: Meat is shot through with both fat and blood. No matter how carefully you trim away the fat, some fat remains in the meat.
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If it doesn't then the meat is tough and unappetizing. It's the fat marbling in the meat that is part of what makes it taste good.
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Without the use of industrial processes that were unavailable in the ancient world and in any ordinary kitchen today , there is no way to eliminate all blood or fat from meat. Today we know why flowing blood is essential to living organisms: It's what brings the things cells need nutrients, oxygen in order to maintain their metabolic life processes.
They didn't know that in the ancient world, but they did know that if an animal didn't have blood flowing through it's veins, it wouldn't live, and if you drained the blood from an animal or a human, for that matter , it would die. But if this is symbolism then it won't automatically carry over into the dietary requirements of the Christian age, any more than other Old Testament ritual practices do. There is, however, one Old Testament passage that a person might appeal to as an argument that it would.
After the Great Flood has subsided, we read:. This gift of meat is said to be made with Noah and his sons, and you could suppose that it--together with the requirement not to eat blood--applies to all mankind. Note that the gift of meat found in vv. One could take the gift of meat in this instance as something that God gave Noah and his sons, but it applies to later peoples in different ways.
In particular, the prohibition on blood in v. We then can't settle the question from this passage by itself and need to turn elsewhere for more information. Do you not see that whatever goes into a man from outside cannot defile him,. Jesus here is articulating a general principle that what comes into the body from outside does not defile us morally. Instead, the evil thoughts that come from within us do. This applies both to dirt on our hands what Jesus was talking about in the original context and to foods an implication Mark draws out.
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Mark thus points out that Jesus' statement implies that all foods are, in principle, clean. Eating them does not defile a person.
The Blood of Christ Across the Centuries : Christian Courier
That would include foods made with blood, for there were such foods in the ancient world, just as there are now. The dispute about what foods could be eaten continued for some time in the early Church, with different Christians taking different positions. To help keep peace between Jewish and Gentile Christians, the Council of Jerusalem issued a pastoral directive: The reason for this is explained by James: It would thus help Jewish Christians if Gentile Christians refrained from certain things thought to violate the Mosaic Law.
We know from other passages, however, that such things were not automatically wrong in and of themselves:. We've already seen that it's not possible to avoid eating blood, since some always remains in the meat. We've seen that the basis of the blood prohibition involves symbolism and is linked to Jewish sacrificial ritual that has passed away. And we've seen that Jesus articulated a principle that would result in all foods being clean, apparently including the ancient ones made with blood.
The Blood of Christ in Prophecy
If these are not enough, however, there is the practice of the Church down through the centuries. Blood has been eaten in many Christian lands for the last twenty centuries , without the Church prohibiting this practice. The other example is more delicate: From the viewpoint of exegesis the explicit reason for this prohibition is not exactly theological, it rather reflects a symbolical representation: After the apostolic era the Church did not feel obliged to make this a basis for formulating precise rules for the butcher and the kitchen, and still less in our own times to prohibit blood transfusion.
The trans-cultural value underlying the particular decision of the Church in Acts 15 was a desire to foster the harmonious integration of the various groups, albeit at the price of a provisional compromise [ The Bible and Morality ]. So though, as an American who didn't grow up consuming foods made with blood, I find the idea of eating blood utterly unappetizing to say the least , it is not forbidden by Catholic moral theology or practice. If you like the information I've presented here, you should join my Secret Information Club. If you're not familiar with it, the Secret Information Club is a free service that I operate by email.
Just email me at jimmy secretinfoclub. Jimmy was born in Texas, grew up nominally Protestant, but at age 20 experienced a profound conversion to Christ. Planning on becoming a Protestant pastor or seminary professor, he started an intensive study of the Bible. But the more he immersed himself in Scripture the more he found to support the Catholic faith.
Eventually, he entered the Catholic Church. Many people like their steak "rare and bloody. Is it okay to consume animal blood? But what parts of an animal are okay to eat? Often, if you don't grow up eating something, it will make you squeamish.
Different Strokes for Different Folks I have to acknowledge, though, that people in many other cultures--including Christian ones--feel differently. Animal blood is consumed in various ways, either as an ingredient in foods or as a beverage. Blood was certainly both an ingredient and a beverage in the ancient world. So what does the Old Testament have to say about it? For example, Leviticus and Deuteronomy state: So, if man is to have the opportunity for salvation, the Son of man must be lifted up, i.
There is another interesting passage in Isaiah The prophet says of Christ: When the Lord was instituting the communion supper, of the fruit of the vine—a symbol of his blood—he said:. Accordingly, Jesus was delivered for crucifixion. His hands and feet were pierced Ps. A point of controversy among religionists, however, is exactly when this occurs.
Or is it when obedient faith Rom. This may be demonstrated in a variety of ways. For instance, Hebrews 9: This agrees wonderfully with Acts He intended that it be observed by Christians i. Hence, the communion was observed every Sunday.
Blood of Christ
The supper was to consist of bread which symbolized his body and fruit of the vine which represented his blood — cf. Neither the Roman Catholic doctrine of transubstantiation which says that the bread and juice turn into the body and blood of the Lord nor the Lutheran idea of consubstantiation the flesh and blood of Jesus are mingled with the communion elements is true.
Further, it proclaims his death in view of his second coming 1 Cor.
It is to be observed in a solemn manner, worthy of the great event it portrays 1 Cor. The book of Hebrews was written to inoculate Hebrew Christians against an impending apostasy from Christianity back to Judaism. False teachers were working among the brethren suggesting that Jesus of Nazareth was not the Messiah, hence, the Christian system should be abandoned.
In addressing this matter the inspired writer stresses the consequences of accepting such a doctrine. This context speaks, of course, of those who high-handedly repudiate the Savior and renounce his deity, but could it not in a practical way also describe those who, by the style of their lives, tell the world that they really are no longer interested in living the Christian life?