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Did Paul teach against the Dietary Laws?
by Rav Sha’ul

Christianity today has committed the Transgression of Desolation and abolished The Torah and with it Yahuah’ instruction on what is and what is not “food”.  One thing to keep in mind is that Paul was a Torah observant Rabbi and things such as pork were not “food” in his vocabulary.  So any reference to “food” by Paul in context is not referring to pork because pork is not food anymore than dirt is food.  So to assume Paul is saying pork is OK to eat is taking his writings out of context of The Torah. 

However, still we need to put Paul’s writings into context of what Paul was addressing.  Let’s take a look at one passage where it seems Paul is teaching “all foods including pork are clean” keeping in mind he did not consider pork food to begin with so below he is NOT talking about pork.  Below I will clarify the modern translations with my comments in blue () then I will explain my comments.

1 Timothy 4

The Spirit clearly says that in later times some will abandon the faith (taught in His Torah) and follow deceiving spirits and things taught by demons. Such teachings come through hypocritical liars, whose consciences have been seared as with a hot iron.

Note: Paul is identifying men who are misled by deceiving spirits, not The Spirit of Holiness which teach us to keep his commandments and obey His laws

They (false teachers) forbid people to marry and order them to (severely) abstain from certain foods (Paul is addressing the pagan system of asceticism),

Dictionary definition

1.     severe self-discipline and avoidance of all forms of indulgence, typically for religious reasons.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Asceticism

Asceticism (/əˈsɛtɪsɪzm/; from the Greek: ἄσκησις áskēsis, "exercise" or "training") describes a lifestyle characterized by abstinence from worldly pleasures, often for the purpose of pursuing spiritual goals. Many religious traditions, such as Hinduism, Buddhism, and Jainism advocate restraint with respect to actions of body, speech, and mind.

which Yahuah created to be received with thanksgiving (food is not to be used for the purpose of Asceticism) by those who believe and who know the truth. For everything Yahuah created (marriage and food) is good, and nothing (defined as food in The Torah) is to be rejected if it is received with thanksgiving, because it is consecrated by the word of Yahuah and prayer (not by Asceticism, the EXTREME denial of the physical body).

If you point these things out to the brothers and sisters (and correct them from practicing Asceticism), you will be a good minister of Yahusha the Messiah, nourished on the truths of the faith and of the good teaching that you have followed. Have nothing to do with godless myths and old wives’ tales (of Asceticism which is extreme denial of your physical body from things Yahuah approves); rather, train yourself (Spiritually through the Word of Yahuah and prayer) to be godly (as defined in The Torah). For physical training (Asceticism) is of some value (on occasions such as fasting), but godliness (The Torah and prayer) has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come.

Below is how the Complete Jewish Bible reads:

1 Timothy 4

1 The Spirit expressly states that in the acharit-hayamim some people will apostatize from the faith by paying attention to deceiving spirits and things taught by demons.  2 Such teachings come from the hypocrisy of liars whose own consciences have been burned, as if with a red-hot branding iron. 3 They forbid marriage and require abstinence from foods (defined in The Torah) which God created to be eaten with thanksgiving by those who have come to trust and to know the truth.  4 For everything created by God (as food, and Pork is not food) is good, and nothing received with thanksgiving needs to be rejected,  5 because the word of God and prayer make it holy.  6 If you present all this to the brothers, you will be serving the Messiah Yeshua well; it will show that you have digested the words of the faith and of the good teaching which you have followed.  7 But refuse godless bubbe-meises, and exercise yourself in godliness.  8 For although physical exercise does have some value, godliness is valuable for everything, since it holds promise both for the present life and for the life to come.

What Paul is saying is this: The heretics' false teaching (the myths and wives' tales) supported a system of asceticism (the abstinence from certain foods and disparagement of marriage, 4:3). Godliness for them apparently had mainly to do with knowledge of "spiritual" things. The body, they held, could be controlled by rigorous self-denial (physical training, 4:8). But genuine godliness is the life of faith strengthened by training in the Word of God (4:7)--that is, a lifestyle lived in obedience to the good teaching.

In Romans 14, Paul is addressing Liberty not “physical food” by the concept behind the letter of The Law and the ‘intent’ behind it.  The Apostle Paul addresses liberty in several of his letters.  Let’s look first at Romans 14 where Paul defines what has come to be called “The Law of Liberty” although that is a man made term, there is no such “Law” in The Law of Yahuah but rather it is a concept of truth in the process of sanctification.

Romans 14  - The Law of Liberty

14 Receive one who is weak in the faith, but not if he wants to argue and create disputes. 2 For one believes he may eat all lawful things (defined in The Torah), but he who is weak eats only vegetables (abstains from meat in general a vegetarian). 3 Let not him who eats (meat) despise him who does not eat, and let not him who does not eat judge him who eats; for Yahuah has received him. 4 Who are you to self righteously judge another’s servant? To his own master he stands or falls (by Torah standards not your own moral code). Indeed, he will be made to stand, for Yahuah is able to make him stand (as Yahuah gives him the Spirit of loving obedience to His Law)

5 One person esteems one (feast) day as better than another (some believe Yom Kippur is THE most Holy of all Holy Days), while another esteems all (feast) days alike. Each one should be fully convinced in his own mind (and not doubt his position because doubt is sin). 6 The one who observes the day (of Atonement as the MOST Holy Day), observes it in honor of Yahuah. The one who eats (on the Day of Atonement), eats in honor of Yahuah, since he gives thanks to Yahuah (in keeping the Day of Atonement), while the one who abstains (fasts on The Day of Atonement), abstains in honor of Yahuah and gives thanks to Yahuah.

 7 For none of us lives to himself, and no one dies to himself. 8 For if we live, we live to Yahuah; and if we die, we die to Yahuah. Therefore, whether we live or die, we are Yahuah’s purchased possession. 9 For to this end Yahusha died and rose and lived again, that Yahusha might be King of both the dead and the living. 10 But why do you judge your brother unrighteously? Or why do you show self righteous contempt for your brother? For we shall all stand before the judgment seat of the Messiah. 11 For it is written:

As I live, says Yahuah, Every knee shall bow to Me, And every tongue shall confess to God.”

12 So then each of us shall give account of himself to Yahuah. 13 Therefore let us not self righteously judge one another anymore, but rather resolve this, not to put a stumbling block in our brother’s way and cause him to stumble.

14 I know and am convinced by the Messiah Yahusha that there is nothing common of itself (physically); but to him who considers (spiritual intent) anything to be common (physically), to him it is common. 15 Yet if your brother is grieved because of your liberty (because he is accustomed to vegetables only or immature in the meat of the Word of Yahuah), you are no longer walking in love. Do not destroy with your liberty as a mature son the one for whom Yahusha died (with that liberty comes responsibility to the less mature). 16 Therefore do not let your good (works you have liberty to do) be spoken of as evil (because you do them in the sight of an immature child who then slanders you self righteously because to the less mature what you have liberty to do is sin to them); 17 for The Kingdom of Yahuah is not eating and drinking (physical acts), but righteousness and peace and joy in the Spirit of Holiness (spiritual intent). 18 For he who serves Yahusha in these things (keeping in mind your brother’s maturity level in love and be extremely careful with your individual Liberty) is acceptable to Yahuah (because he gave you that Liberty) and approved by men (because you did not exercise it in front of the spiritually immature).

19 Therefore let us pursue the things which make for peace and the things by which one may edify another (exercise your Liberty sparingly). 20 Do not destroy the work of Yahuah for the sake of exercising your liberty. All lawful things indeed are pure, but it is not profitable to exercise your liberty if it causes the less mature to stumble (as they do not have such liberty). 21 It is good neither to eat meat nor drink wine nor do anything by which your brother stumbles or is offended or is made weak. 22 Do you have faith (and have been given more liberty)?  That liberty is between you and Yahuah. Happy is he who does not condemn himself (be strong in your Liberty don’t doubt it) in what Yahuah has approved and given you liberty to do. 23 But he who doubts his liberty is condemned when he takes such liberty, because he does not take the liberty in faith; for whatever is not from faith is sin.

 

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