It is tempting to think that we find out about the forbidden foods by reading the New Testament, which gives us a detailed and authoritative account of many eating practices, but in fact many of the foods most associated with the New Testament never even appeared in the New Testament. Here is a short-list: “grapes” and “fig leaves”; pork and wine; fish (or fish cakes) and honey; and the use of oil, for example, or vinegar, in cooking.
The Bible says nothing about eating honey, for example, and in the book of Deuteronomy in particular, when God commands a man to sacrifice his son or his daughter, the Bible gives plenty of examples that this is never allowed. God even tells us, “The foreigner that you may buy, of the nations that you may buy into the land that I shall give you… you cannot eat their bread, their clothes, or the things of their merchandise… but you may kill their oxen and their sheep.” (3:17-30 NIV.)
We also have no account of honey as a delicacy and the use of it for medicinal purposes, to heal wounds, or to purify food. It does not appear in the Torah.
It is important to note that the Bible does mention foods that may not be eaten, but we find plenty of examples of people following these injunctions anyway, and we will not consider these cases here. Instead, we will refer our readers to the chapter on the Sabbath, the only part of the Bible that mentions meat and its consumption outside the Sabbath. The Bible specifically forbids us to eat meat on the first day of the week. The passage that appears as verse 18 of Leviticus is very specific and is the same as the one from Deuteronomy, except in terms of what we can kill on the Sabbath. In Leviticus 19:32-36 we read, “You shall not eat meat on your first or your second day [of the week] of the week or on any days before or after it and you shall keep the law of the LORD your God, which I command you today, that you may live and gain a livelihood. . . ” And if a man [or woman] is found on the Sabbath in any other place of the week or before or after it and he eats anything or drinks something from it, he is to be put to death.”
Similarly, in 1 Chronicles 10:28-31 we read, “It is forbidden to
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