By Bob Barney
The Plain Truth
Over the years that I have spent studying the words of God, which we find in the Bible, I have come to see many ideas that scholars believe about the Bible that just simply aren't true. The Rapture, for example is one of them. There is not a single reference in the Bible that shows people are raptured before the great tribulation, the Bible is clear that we all rise from the dead when Jesus returns, not one second before. The same mistaken dogma lead most people in believing that we either go to heaven or hell when we die. Not true. We all die; Christian and sinner alike go to the grave UNTIL Christ returns. A subject that everyone universally believes is that there was no death in the garden of Eden. They love the quote 1 Corinthians 15:21 (For since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead. KJV).
Many Christians believe that all the animals in Eden were vegetarians, and there was no death . Believe it or not, the meaning of this Bible verse only applies to humans, not animals. Before I go to Bible verses lets examine some flaws in the idea that there was no death of animals in Eden. If rats and mice had no natural enemies, how were their populations controlled. Of misquotes, lice, ticks and fleas? I mean we see well today with man's misguided laws banning hunting in America, we have seen an explosion of the deer population, along with the ticks they carry, many of which cause untold human misery and death. Lyme disease (in 19 forms) is a killer.
You may reply, “God controlled their populations, and they did not bare offspring, more than two per couple.” Sounds like a Communist Chinese population control scheme destined to fail, but the Bible clearly states that God said to all animals, “Be fruitful and multiply,” and to reproduce “after their own kind,” which gives us a logistical problem. Oops. We understand the words “fruitful” and “multiply.” It means two made Four that made 8 that made 240 and so on! With no death, we have a bunch of rats eating the corn! If there were one of every species of animal in Eden, there would be at least 12-15 million pairs of animals. If each healthy, adult pair had an average of just one offspring per year, there would be at least several billion offspring after just 12 years! And in 50 years, there would be over 30 trillion! And in 1000 years.......... You get the idea. So, did Adam have to fail, in order to bring reproduction to a halt in just a few years? I think not. Even if we factor in war, death, disease, abortion, and accidents, we humans have been able to produce some 6 billion people in less than 6,000 years.
The physiology of humans and animals have not changed since creation. If wolves were to eat Straw, as some believe ( and yes there is a quote that the lion will eat straw) why did God give them teeth to rip into flesh. Also, why are some animals (including humans) have both carnivouous teeth and herbivore molars – thus making them omnivores? Did God plan for Adam to sin, and thus just played a game with the first couple, knowing they had to sin? I think not. The teeth do not lie. The digestion systems of meat eating lions, and grass eating cows are plain. God intended these animals to live a life to match their teeth, their guts and their instincts.
On a side note, one the most people do not realize, Adam and Eve's time in the garden was very short. We know this because God also commanded that they be "fruitful, and multiply." I have read some 'scholars' make the claim that Adam and Eve could have been in the garden for years before the fall. That cannot be true. God made Eve into a baby factory. She was probably the most fertile of all women, because she was made perfect, in order to bare children. Realizing this, we see that the time in the garden could not have been more than 9 months, as she bore her first child after being thrown out of garden! Some early apocryphal books claim the time spent in the garden was merely a week! That makes sense to me. So they may not have consumed meat in that time, although they were permitted to.
This leads us to the possibly that the death that Adam brought to the world was HUMAN DEATH, not animal death, and that is exactly what Paul meant. This is not new. Catholic Saint Thomas Aquinas disagreed with those who hold that in Paradise animals were all tame and herbivorous and he notes that only human nature changed as a result of human sin and not the nature of animals. Thus there were carnivorous animals on the earth and brought into the Garden of Eden to see what Adam would name them. He writes:
“In the opinion of some, those animals which now are fierce and kill others, would, in that state, have been tame, not only in regard to man, but also in regard to other animals. But this is quite unreasonable. For the nature of animals was not changed by man's sin, as if those whose nature now it is to devour the flesh of others, would then have lived on herbs, as the lion and falcon.b Nor does Bede's gloss on Genesis 1:30, say that trees and herbs were given as food to all animals and birds, but to some. Thus there would have been a natural antipathy between some animals [Summa Theologiae I:96:1 ad 2].
Aquinas held that it was not all death that entered the world through man's sin, but human death. In his view, animals could and did kill and eat each other before the Fall. I believe he was right. Note that he spoke in terms of human death and resurrection--of death and resurrection coming to those who are "in Adam" and "in Christ" ("For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ shall all be made alive"). The Christian faith does not envision animals fitting those descriptions.
The Apostle Paul also seems to be speaking of human death entering the world.
The same is true of the parallel passage in Romans: “Therefore as sin came into the world through one man and death through sin, and so death spread to all men because all men sinned” [Rom. 5:12].
The Millennium Will Be a Return to Eden:
Most Christians and scholars alike see the parallel between the Garden of Eden, and Jerusalem in Revelation 20. One of the most important things Bible prophecy reveals about the Millennium is that during this time there Christ and His elect will bring the world back to Eden-like conditions. Paradise lost will become paradise restored! It will end up being far better than all the secular ideas of utopia that man has dreamed up! Notice what Bible prophecy tells us about this time: “For the Lord will comfort Zion, He will comfort all her waste places; He will make her wilderness like Eden, and her desert like the garden of the Lord; joy and gladness will be found in it, thanksgiving and the voice of melody” (Isaiah 51:3)
Yes, Christ plans to make His 1,000 year reign LIKE EDEN. Here is a problem for you vegetarians out there who believe God requires us not to eat meat, and that we won't be eating meat in the world to come. God tells us that sacrifices will be re-introduced by Christ! There are several passages in the Old Testament that clearly indicate animal sacrifice will be re-instituted during the millennial kingdom. Some passages mention it in passing as the topic of the millennial kingdom is discussed, passages like Isaiah 56:6-8; Zechariah 14:16; and Jeremiah 33:15-18.
The passage that is the most extensive, giving the greatest detail, is Ezekiel 43:18-46:24. It should be noted that this is part of a greater passage dealing with the millennial kingdom, a passage that begins with Ezekiel 40. In Ezekiel 40, the Lord begins to give details of the temple that will exist during the millennial kingdom, a temple that dwarfs all other temples previously built, even Herod’s temple that was quite large, which existed during the earthly ministry of Christ. The purpose of Passover sacrifices is not to burn animals to God, but rather, to have the priest slaughter animal for the meat!
Another of the most common misconceptions deals with the word "sacrifice." we know that God does not need our sacrifices -- animal or any other kind.The offerings that were brought in the Temple, like all the commandments, were not done for God. They were done for us. It was the method for the people to eat properly butchered clean meat that would carry no disease. The ancient priest were ministers yes, but they were also physicians, to help heal the sick, and BUTCHERS! Today, we raise an animal, say a cow, for meat and take it to the butcher. That's not what God wants. The experience of taking a life should be spiritual- not industrial. To actually see a lamb killed right in front of your eyes is quite disturbing. In an instant, that living breathing animal that you cared for since a baby is killed in front of your eyes. Life and death are staring you in the face. Running through your mind is the sobering thought: "This could be me. This animal is just like me with a heart, hair, brain and blood. There but the grace of God goes me.”
The blood is then taken and put on the altar. The blood represents life. After that, certain fats are burned on the altar. Parts of the meat are given to the the Jewish priest, who helped with the offering, his pay, the rest of the meat is then given to the owner of the offering. Honestly which method of butchering seems better to you? A spiritual slaughter, where the blood is offered to God, or a butcher with maybe a dirty knife, pouring the lifeblood down a drain?
So, if the slaughtering of animals happens in the millennium, then why not in Eden. Only one part of sacrifices represents sin. If there were no sin, God would still require the butchering of His animals in a humane and clean way, and that is what sacrifices mean in the millennium. It's no longer to cover sin, because Jesus did that. It is to produce meat for those to eat the Passover!
Vegetarianism Satan's Deception
I remember a friend telling a seventh day Adventists (who are vegetarian for spiritual reasons) “that only nuts, wacko's and liberals from California are vegetarians. It must be from the Devil.” That made me wonder, “Is Satan behind vegetarianism?”
In his book The (Pagan) History of Vegetarianism by Tristram Stuart, the author states, “Although the word “vegetarian” was not coined until the 1840s, as long ago as the sixth century BC Pythagoras propounded a theory of immortality that entailed the transmigration of the soul between living creatures – and thus the immorality of eating the flesh of any of them. Pythagoras was thought to have encountered this theory while traveling in Egypt, to which country it was believed to have been introduced by philosophers from India. His doctrines were later advocated by such philosophical giants as Socrates, Diogenes and Plato and would become a seminal part of the Hellenistic philosophical tradition. Pythagoras may not have visited India himself, but Alexander the Great certainly did; and when Alexander arrived in Taxila (now in Pakistan) in 326 BC and encountered Brahmin, Jane and Buddhist ascetics (he called them “gymnosophists”) who also believed in reincarnation and non-violence and therefore did not eat meat, the link with (if not “the Discovery of”) India was confirmed. Just as this evidence of an early and exotic provenance lent credibility to Greek philosophy, so the existence of a culture that had survived – even thrived – for so long on a meat-free diet has inspired the vegetarian movement ever since.”
The books author (who is not a vegetarian himself) says that the motivations to become vegetarian haven’t changed too much. “People decide to be vegetarian for the same reasons now as 2,000 years ago – it is good for their health and they don’t like the idea of killing animals.”
The apostle Paul refers to vegetarianism for religious reasons (probably to avoid eating meat sacrificed to idols) In Romans 14:2 “For one believes he may eat all things, but he who is weak eats only vegetables.” Although, the weakness that he refers to is spiritual, not physical, as verse 1 brings out: “Receive one who is weak in the faith, but not to disputes over doubtful things.” By speaking of those who refrain from eating meat for this reason as being “weak,” Paul considers abstinence from eating meat as an extreme, unbalanced response to the issue of meats sacrificed to idols, Paul continues: “Let not him who eats meat despise him who does not eat meat, and let not him who does not eat [meat] judge him who eats [meat]; for God has received him” (Romans 14:3).
Just like going to a Christmas party is not a sin, although we know Christmas is pagan, becoming a vegetarian because you think it is right, is not a sin, but it is also not condoned! It's based in paganism, just like almost everything we do is.
What Happens when You don't eat CLEAN MEAT!
Notice the word “clean.” Christians may NOT eat just any meat. God’s food laws forbidding pork, shrimp, etc., still apply. The Bible NEVER STATES that the biblical food laws have ever been repealed. That's just another commonly held misunderstanding of God's word.
The Plain Truth is that vegetarianism IS NOT GOOD FOR YOU and any honest study demonstrates the point. Vegetables, fruits and nuts cleanse the body and are essential for the detoxification of harmful toxins that concentrate in your body, meats on the other hand feed your cells and nourish the body, as God intended. Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride has a fasicinating tale on this subject, you can red it here. (http://www.doctor-natasha.com/feeding-versus-cleansing.php). She is a neurosurgeon who wrote the book “GUT AND PSYCHOLOGY SYNDROME.” Gut and Psychology Syndrome (GAP Syndrome or GAPS) is a condition which establishes a connection between the functions of the digestive system and the brain. This term was created by Dr Natasha Campbell–McBride, MD, MMedSci (neurology), MMedSci (human nutrition) in 2004 after working with hundreds of children and adults with neurological and psychiatric conditions, such as autistic spectrum disorders, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD⁄ADD), schizophrenia, dyslexia, dyspraxia, depression, obsessive –compulsive disorder, bi-polar disorder and other neuro-psychological and psychiatric problems.
There Are Short-Term Benefits to Veganism, but Long-Term Risks
(From Dr. Mercola: “From a historical perspective, veganism is a very recent development. The roots of veganism go back to England, when in 1944, Donald Watson coined the term “vegan.” Watson’s primary argument for veganism was one of ethics. At the age of 14, he’d witnessed the slaughter of a pig, which left him horrified.
“Immediately, he decided to stop eating meat and wanted the whole world to follow suit, despite having no training in nutrition. Veganism is based on ideology, not human physiology, Kahn reminds us in her book, which also delves into human evolution.
“Part of the confusion is that many vegans appear quite healthy in the earlier stages. This isn't so surprising when you consider the fact that many switch from processed foods to a mostly raw plant-based diet. The influx of live foods will undoubtedly improve your health.
“However, in the long term, the absence of all animal-based foods can take a toll, as certain nutrients cannot be obtained from the plant kingdom. Carnosine, carnitine, taurine, retinol, vitamin D3, conjugated linoleic acid and long-chained omega-3 fats are examples. B12 deficiency is also very common among vegans.
“After six or seven years, the B12 stored in your liver will be completely exhausted, at which point you may start to experience serious neurodegenerative diseases. There are many documented cases of blindness from B12 deficiency, as well as other neurological disorders.
Historically, Vegetarianism Always Included Some Animal Foods
“Vegetarianism typically allows both dairy and eggs. Back in Pythagoras’ days, early Western vegetarians also ate fish. (Today, this “branch” of vegetarianism is sometimes separated out and referred to as pescetarianism.)
“My passion has been identifying food to optimize health and I'm absolutely convinced that seafood is one of the healthiest foods on the planet, primarily because of its docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) content — a 22-carbon omega-3 fat that is absolutely essential for your health, as it's a structural component of your cell membranes.
“If you have low DHA levels, it's almost physiologically impossible to be healthy because it's such an important part of energy generation at the molecular level. You need DHA, which is only found in fatty fish and certain other marine animals like krill.
“There's even quantum physics going on with respect to its ability to capture light and integrate it into your system. For example, DHA in your retinal pigmented epithelium is responsible for converting sunlight into vital DC electric current your body needs. If you're deficient, your ability to generate energy by your mitochondria will be impaired.
“Granted, water pollution is a major concern today, so you have to eat really low on the food chain. Anchovies, sardines, herring, wild Alaskan salmon, fish roe and krill are all good choices as they're high in omega-3s while being low in mercury and other pollutants.”
Like It or Not, You Need Marine-Based DHA
Mercola continues: “If you exclude these foods, you're just not going to be healthy. And contrary to popular belief, you simply cannot obtain all the DHA you need from plant sources. Plant-based omega-3 (alpha-linolenic acid or ALA) has 18 carbons whereas marine-based omega-3s (DHA and eicosapentaenoic acid or EPA) have 22 and 20 respectively. The difference in the length of the carbon chain makes a significant difference in terms of functionality.
“ALA functions as a source of fuel (food), whereas EPA and DHA are structural elements. More than 90 percent of the omega-3 fat found in your brain tissue is DHA, which suggests how important it is for healthy neurological function, for example.
“The problem is that, although your body can convert some of the ALA found in plants to the DHA found in marine oils, it is very rare for it to be more than 5 percent — the typical conversion rate is 1 to 3 percent, or even less.1 This simply isn't enough to have any significant benefit.
“So please, don't make the mistake of thinking you can forgo marine-sourced DHA for a plant-based ALA found in flaxseed, flaxseed oil, chia seeds, walnuts and leafy greens.”
Mercola's explanations of short term benefits of a vegetable only diet helps explain why Daniel and his friends asked not to eat the rich meats (probably pork) of the king's household, but only vegetables. He didn't even eat bread! It was short in duration and afterwards ate a totally biblically CLEAN Godly diet.
Myths of a Vegan diet
Scores of people promote the vegan lifestyle, Seventh Day Adventist has it as a part of their religion, yet try as you might, you will not find a credible study that shows that eating a plant based diet promotes long life. In fact in a list of 100 of the oldest verifiable people on earth (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_oldest_living_people), NONE are vegans! NONE! Many even smoke, and drink alcohol, all eat fish, meat and a bunch of fresh unprocessed vegetables!
Here is a link that answers the myths of a Vegan Diet
Myth #15: Eating animal foods is inhumane.
In short, God intended you to eat a clean diet of raw milk, grass fed CLEAN animals, as well as a full array of fruits, nuts and vegetables. Don't be swayed by yet another Biblical misconception!
Dangers of going Vegan: https://chriskresser.com/why-you-should-think-twice-about-vegetarian-and-vegan-diets/