Peter’s Vision of the Unclean Animals

IMGOn the morrow, as they went on their journey, and drew nigh unto the city, Peter went up upon the housetop to pray about the sixth hour: And he became very hungry, and would have eaten: but while they made ready, he fell into a trance, And saw heaven opened, and a certain vessel descending unto him, as it had been a great sheet knit at the four corners, and let down to the earth: Wherein were all manner of fourfooted beasts of the earth, and wild beasts, and creeping things, and fowls of the air. And there came a voice to him, Rise, Peter; kill, and eat. But Peter said, Not so, Lord; for I have never eaten any thing that is common or unclean. And the voice spake unto him again the second time, What God hath cleansed, that call not thou common.
Acts 10:9-15 (KJV)

A certain truth that God has shown me is that He has cleansed all meats to be consumed as we wish. This is especially a stumbling block for those caught up in the Hebrew Roots movement. Even back in the days of Peter and Paul there were false brethren such as these saying that the Sabbath must be kept,along with dietary and other Mosaic laws. This is due to a total lack of personal scripture study combined with listening to the doctrines of the wolves that have invaded the church as the prophet Jude warned us.

And he said unto them, Ye know how that it is an unlawful thing for a man that is a Jew to keep company, or come unto one of another nation; but God hath shewed me that I should not call any man common or unclean.
Acts 10:28 (KJV)

In the case of Peter, although he received the revelation to not call unclean what God has cleansed, the Holy Spirit revealed to him that the animals of his vision also served as an allegory for the Gentiles. Would God use such an illustration without it also being literally true? Are certain meats still bad to eat? The answer is no, of course not. Our brother Paul dispels any doubt of the truth regarding both meats and Sabbath keeping in Romans 14, which is why the Hebrew Roots people try to strike his words from scripture by suggesting that he contradicts the words of Christ.

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.
Romans 14:14 (KJV)

You will notice that Paul makes it plain that Jesus has persuaded him that nothing is unclean in and of itself. What he does condemn though is judging others in such matters.

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.
Romans 14:2-7 (KJV)

See, we don’t have a problem so much with people telling others to eat things, but of Hebrew Roots people trying to bring those who believe as Paul that nothing is unclean back under bondage to the Law. Indeed, we are told in 1 Timothy 4:3 (KJV) that men will try to teach us to abstain from meats in the last days.

I must also point out to any Hebrew Roots people reading this that Paul is not contradicting Christ in this teaching, but in fact it was Christ who first told us that nothing we eat can defile us (Mark 7:18-23 KJV)
In the above passage you will also see that Paul completely shuts down these same people who would also try to condemn us regarding Sabbath keeping. But what is really interesting is the fact that Paul tells us that we must ultimately follow our hearts regarding these things. Why? Because that is what we are judged by. So if we truly believe that eating pork is a sin and eat it anyway then it is a sin to us. But on the other hand, we must not judge another person in the meat that they consume or in their Sabbath keeping (Colossians 2:16 KJV).

The Hebrew Roots/Sacred Name cultists feel compelled to not only keep the Law, but to look down upon those who don’t. You see, that is how we may discern them, by these fruits. They are wicked, or at the very least severely misguided. They act just like the Pharisees; hypocrites who selectively keep the Law. They cleanse the outside of the cup whilst the inside is filthy.

But I have a few things against thee, because thou hast there them that hold the doctrine of Balaam, who taught Balac to cast a stumblingblock before the children of Israel, to eat things sacrificed unto idols, and to commit fornication.
Revelation 2:14 (KJV)

Notwithstanding I have a few things against thee, because thou sufferest that woman Jezebel, which calleth herself a prophetess, to teach and to seduce my servants to commit fornication, and to eat things sacrificed unto idols.
Revelation 2:20 (KJV)

Let me make clear that this doesn’t include meats sacrificed to idols which Paul also deals with in Acts 21:25 (KJV) and 1 Corinthians 10:23-33 (KJV). Again it depends on the heart of the matter. If we accidentally eat meat sacrificed to idols such as Halal it will do us no harm. It is not poisoned or unhealthy, physically speaking. But if we knowingly consume these things despite scripture warning us not to we bring condemnation upon ourselves.

I was recently tested in this area when I was preparing some chicken soup for one of these cold winter days and was shocked to discover that the package of chicken I got was Halal certified. (For more on this please read my article: Has Your Food Been Sacrificed to Idols?) Once I saw the word ‘Halal’ prominently stamped on my package of meat I could no longer claim ignorance. Now if I went and prepared it anyway without telling anyone else they would all suffer no condemnation by consuming this meal, but I would if I did. I had to stop cooking, throw that package away and go to the store to find something without that label. Luckily, my local Wal-Mart doesn’t sell Halal certified meats (yet).


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