Why Christians eat pork?


I have just read in the Bible that the pig was forbidden by God in human nutrition. The hare or rabbit were also forbidden. However, at Christmas, the pork is a tradition. Eventually, this animal was forbidden not only in the Koran, but also in the Bible. Muslims respect the word of God, Christians ignore it.

Clean and unclean animals

In Chapter 11 of the book of Leviticus, God established a list of clean and unclean animals. The list is quite large and enumerates many species of animals, birds and fish. In this list it is written:

… and the pig, for though it divides the hoof, thus making a split hoof, it does not chew cud, it is unclean to you.(Leviticus 11:7)(NASB)

It’s true that the list includes the hare, and other animals. Before we go further with the explanation of this topic, it should be noted that these commandments were part of the Old Testament or Mosaic covenant, which entered the Hebrew people, that means those were commandments given to the Hebrew people. Why did God forbid Jews to eat the meat of these animals?

Unclean animals symbolized the Gentiles

After Jesus’ ascension, the apostles, who were Jews, were preaching the gospel only to the Jews, with very few exceptions. Chapter 10 of the book of Acts tells of Cornelius, a Roman army officer established in Caesarea, who was a pious man and was praying to God and living a godly life. One day an angel appeared to him and gave him instructions on how to find Apostle Peter and bring him into his house, because he had to communicate him a very important message. Cornelius sent some soldiers to Joppa, where the angel told him that the Apostle Peter was at that moment:

On the next day, as they were on their way and approaching the city, Peter went up on the housetop about the sixth hour to pray. But he became hungry and was desiring to eat; but while they were making preparations, he fell into a trance; and he saw the sky opened up, and an object like a great sheet coming down, lowered by four corners to the ground, and there were in it all kinds of four-footed animals and crawling creatures of the earth and birds of the air. A voice came to him, “Get up, Peter, kill and eat!” But Peter said, “By no means, Lord, for I have never eaten anything unholy and unclean.” Again a voice came to him a second time, “What God has cleansed, no longer consider unholy.” This happened three times, and immediately the object was taken up into the sky. Now while Peter was greatly perplexed in mind as to what the vision which he had seen might be, behold, the men who had been sent by Cornelius, having asked directions for Simon’s house, appeared at the gate; and calling out, they were asking whether Simon, who was also called Peter, was staying there. While Peter was reflecting on the vision, the Spirit said to him, “Behold, three men are looking for you. But get up, go downstairs and accompany them without misgivings, for I have sent them Myself.” (Acts 10:9-20)(NASB)

When Apostle Peter came to Cornelius in Caesarea, he went to his house and said to them:

And he said to them, “You yourselves know how unlawful it is for a man who is a Jew to associate with a foreigner or to visit him; and yet God has shown me that I should not call any man unholy or unclean.”(Acts 10:28)(NASB)

Through the revelation from the Holy Spirit, the Apostle Peter clearly understood and said that the unclean animals by that time symbolized the Gentiles, i.e. all other nations except the Hebrew nation, who do not know God. But after Jesus’ ascension and descent of the Holy Spirit, God has opened a new era when Gentiles, that are the other nations are not longer unclean, because God came to bring salvation to all people, and Jesus gave his life on the cross for the sins of all mankind, that people of all nations.

The unclean animals were the shadow of the things to come

As we saw in the case of the Apostle Peter, the restrictions on the unclean animals were a way God used to reveal that there came a time when salvation is for all peoples. Here’s why Christians no longer make sense to keep these commands on the clean and unclean animals, on religious grounds. The Apostle Paul wrote this:

Therefore no one is to act as your judge in regard to food ordrink or in respect to a festival or a new moon or aSabbath day (Colossians 2:16)(NASB)

All things listed in this list are linked to the law of Moses and all were shadows of things to come, all they indicated to the Lord Jesus Christ and to some truths which were fulfilled or will be fulfilled in the New Testament. Since the real things have come we enjoy them, and the respect of the shadows no longer makes any sense.

Thus, God’s prohibition for the people of Israel to not eat pork and other kind of meat of unclean animals was a shadow that showed that at that time, Gentiles did not have access to God, but when Jesus came, through Him they received the opportunity to have their sins forgiven and eternal life. More important than eating or not pork is seeking forgiveness from the Lord Jesus Christ and salvation which He gives by faith.

Translated by Felicia Rotaru