Seventh-Day Adventists/hamburger

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QUESTION: we see people cringing over others eating unclean meats then themselves chomp down a nice juicy burger. don't get me wrong i'm not here to beat people over the head with the health message, but I hate to see them teaching others its ok. if its ok why does the bible say to refrain from blood/fat? do I have this wrong?

ANSWER: Dear Mike, First may I apologize for the delay.  So many things have come up and I haven’t checked my email for a few days.  Thanks for understanding and thanks for sharing your comments and concerns.  So who is “teaching others it’s okay” to eat fat and blood?  I haven’t heard any SDA teachers or preachers lately saying it is permissible to eat these things.  Even the medical community warns about the ill effects of a high fat and cholesterol diet.  But anyway, the Bible does prohibit the eating of unclean foods.  God is very interested in our health and wants us to have the best life possible while here on earth.  Concerning fat and blood there are certain prohibitions such as this verse found in Leviticus 3:17 which reads “It shall be a perpetual statute for your generations throughout all your dwellings, that ye eat neither fat nor blood.”  However there is strong reason to believe that this must be viewed in the ceremonial context concerning animal sacrifices to the Lord because the verse just preceding 3:17 reads “And the priest shall burn them upon the altar: it is the food of the offering made by fire for a sweet savour: all the fat is the LORD’S.”  The entire chapter and then some continually states that the fat is the Lord’s portion, not the priests.  It also states that the blood is the Lords also and must be sprinkled or poured out because “the life is in the blood.”  The statement that “it shall be a perpetual statute for your generations throughout all your dwellings, that ye eat neither fat nor blood” is directed toward the priesthood.  The entire chapter of Leviticus 3 is talking about peace and meat offerings and is spoken to Aaron and his sons (the priesthood).  Then the chapter ends with “it shall be a perpetual statute for your generations…”  I suppose that the argument could be made that we are all priests to the Lord and therefore this applies to all Christians but I think primarily the prohibition was for the Levitical priesthood.  I am not saying that it’s okay to eat fat and blood because even common sense tells us this is harmful and God plainly warns that we are to keep our bodies undefiled and in the best health possible since each of us are meant to be a living temple wherein God’s Spirit dwells.  But please consider this also Mike. God permitted us after the flood to eat flesh foods but only the clean animals.  Even though you are eating a clean animal it is virtually impossible to refrain from eating some amount of fat and blood.  The blood and fat permeates the entire flesh of the animal since blood and cholesterol (fancy name for fat) goes to every cell of the organism.  If you want to be safe, be a vegetarian.  Another reason given for not eating blood is because it was a pagan practice and Christians are not to associate in such rituals.  Something else we can look at is Acts chapter 15 when the Apostles held that Jerusalem council concerning the question of should Gentiles be circumcised.  As they concluded James states in verse 20 “ But that we write unto them, that they abstain from pollutions of idols, and from fornication, and from things strangled, and from blood.”  So here in the New Testament we have again abstaining from blood.  Incidentally, according to Rabbinic teaching, when animals were strangled it became impossible to fully draw out the blood even when using salt.  So now that I’ve managed to completely confuse the issue let me just sum up what I said.  The prohibition of fat and blood was primarily for the priesthood.  God permitted the use of clean animals for food even though you cannot get rid of every trace of fat and blood from even a clean animal.  James’ advice to the Gentiles was to abstain from blood since this could be a stumbling block to these new Christian converts from paganism.  (During Roman times blood was frequently added to wine as a beverage and often used in other pagan rituals).  So if you eat clean flesh foods you do your best to cut off as much fat as possible and pick the leanest kind of meat possible.  But you do best if you avoid all flesh foods.  This is my opinion.  I’m glad Mike that you are concerned about your health and the health of others.  My sincere wish is that you are just as concerned and even more so about your spiritual health.  Please remember to stay close to the Lord and talk to Him often.  He loves you very much.  Please also keep in mind the first few verses of John chapter 15 concerning the Vine and branch.  As the branch abides in the vine for life we too are to abide in Christ for life.  When we cut ourselves off we begin to die.  It is so important to abide in Christ because as He has said, “without me you can do nothing.”  So why is this?  Because Satan conquered our first parents and no person that descends from Adam and Eve can overcome Satan in their own strength.  Christ is the only one who was able to resist all the devils temptations and remain sinless.  The only way to be victorious is by abiding in Christ and having Him abide in you.  Thanks again for writing and may the Lord bless you as you continue seeking Him, anthony  

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QUESTION: thanks so much brother Anthony, you are doing such a great work. there are many questions Ive had for years, now I can get some informed answers. wisdom in a multitude of counselors! yes I know many Adventists who eat burger and don't think its a big deal and teach others the same. common lay folk. I understand the common clean meats, but never knew how they could justify burger because it has so much added fat/blood. yes were all in the sanctification process, and need to stay connected/teachable. and Im surly not gonna bash people with our awesome health message, but when members find out Im vegan then here we go. people with many more years than I. oh and their favorite is Jesus ate meat.... that's something they haft to decide for themselves, they all read the same bible/sop I do. cheese is even unfit for the body, tell me that's not at your carry ins? but I don't worry about getting a little here and there for the sake of unity. we don't work our way to paradise but it will be automatic/learned to appreciate our temples. I would  wanna be foreshore before I taught others the same? another question. what about jogging/biking on the Sabbath? sorry if these questions seem petty but they need answers. again thanks so much, your a GOD send, glad HE lead me to your sight.

Answer
Hi Mike, thanks for the encouragement.  When I first volunteered at this site about 5 years ago there were only 4 of us under SDA.  The last time I checked there were about 10 with all but two of the originals gone.  It disturbs me that most of the “experts” are not even SDA and I know that they are there under the direction of the prince of darkness.  They use “logic” and “alternative” methods with the promise that “the truth will make you free” not even knowing the real meaning of that verse.  Anyway, may God judge them for all they lead astray.  Well that was my venting rant.  By the way Mike, since we are on the subject of hamburger, did you know that the Bible states that Jesus ate hamburger?  I like your statement (awesome health message).  Yup, direct from God.  At times when I reflect that I am a member of the SDA church I feel so honored of God.  We know that the people are not perfect, but the message is – well as far as the world of religion goes.  I was born and raised a Catholic and most of my family still are.  Looking back I see how God lead me.  I feel so honored and I hope that you feel that way also.  God has called you and me among others and given us the opportunity to be candidates for heaven.  What an incredible privilege.  I so hope you feel the same way and continue in your calling because I know so many that have been born into the church and take this honor so casually.  My prayer is that you faithfully continue in your calling.  Well in talking about foods and Jesus eating meat may I just add a comment for your consideration?  Generally, Jesus was a vegetarian.  Each recorded instance of when Christ ate meat was to serve or illustrate a purpose.  For instance when He appeared to the 11 (or 10 depending on your understanding) after His resurrection He wanted to assure them that He was not a spirit but flesh and blood.  A piece of fish was at hand so he ate it before the disciples to help their unbelief.  A ghost doesn’t eat a piece of solid food.  At the last supper He partook of the lamb in accordance with the requirements from the time of Moses symbolizing the sacrifice (Lamb of God) to come.  Isn’t it remarkable that one of the conditions in eating the Passover lamb was that none of the lamb’s bones were to be broken?  When the true Passover Lamb died on the cross the soldiers came to break the legs of those on the cross but saw Christ was already dead and didn’t break His bones.  So I managed to digress.  What about jogging or biking on the Sabbath?  What might be right for one person may not be right for another person.  This is something you have to discuss with the Lord.  If you can walk along a nature path on the Sabbath communing with the Lord through nature, couldn’t you also bike along a nature path?  Some people can without being distracted with the pedaling and braking and steering clear of objects and such but some can’t.  I have biked on the Sabbath alone but generally I found myself getting more involved in the sport  than with communing with the Lord.  But then that’s me.  Jogging I don’t know about.  If you do it for exercise then why not lift weights on the Sabbath or use the treadmill or go to the gym and such?  Usually exercise requires a day or two off between exercise for best results so I would probably arrange my day off between exercise to fall on the Sabbath.  You can always get better results with the Lord’s blessing rather than with extra work without the Lord’s blessing.  I don’t know Mike, what are your feelings?  If you wanted to go jogging on the Sabbath would you feel comfortable asking Jesus to jog along side you?  Again, this is something you have to talk over with the Lord.  God does not want you to be deprived of any good clean fun or happiness.  God wants your full attention as you cultivate a relationship with Him.  I remember many years ago having a fondness for this girl and when I was finally able to spend time with her it seemed her attention was on everything else except us.  I was really disappointed and nothing ever became of it.  Okay, thanks for putting up with my ranting but please remember Mike that the most important thing is to maintain a close relationship with the Lord.  We are now in very serious times and the devil and his buddies will be working double time to confuse and lead minds away from the Saviour. Thanks for writing and talk to you soon, anthony
 Oh,and Genesis 18 is where Jesus ate hamburger.  Abraham prepared a calf for the 3 wayward strangers.  The Lord and 2 angels.  The Lord accepted the meal because in the middle east 2 things the custom of the times required was that you not refuse one's hospitality and that you must give a drink of water to one that asks even if he were your enemy.  To refuse was of the greatest insult.  

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Anthony

Expertise

Can one know God and not keep His commandments? Let John answer (1Jn2:4). He that says, I know Him and keeps not His commandments (including the 4th) is a liar and the truth is not in him. Since Seventh-Day Adventists derive their teachings from the Holy Bible, I will answer questions on any Biblically related subject or topic and questions on distinct Adventist practice and doctrine. Remember Paul`s words that state in the last days there will be deceivers seeking to lead astray many, yet the sincere believer can take comfort in the Lord`s promise that anyone desiring to know His truth will know it. May the Lord bless you as you seek Him.

Experience

I graduated from an Adventist University with a major in Behavioral Science and a minor in religion including an intermediate study of the Greek written language. I earned a master in religion from Liberty University a Baptist seminary. I have been a student of the Bible and of Biblical history for over 30 years.

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