Monday, July 10, 2006

Monday Question of the Week

Does the Bible Promote Vegetarianism?


Robert said...

This is an interesting topic as well.

In Gen 3:17-19, the Bible seems to describe that the food that is to be eaten is from the ground, or "the plants of the field." Yet, in Gen 9:3, God clearly states that "Everything that lives and moves will be food for you. Just as I gave you the green plants [cf. Gen 3:18], I now give you everything."

Immediately following this decree, there is further instruction not to eat meat that has its lifeblood still in it. (That sure puts ordering steak "rare" into question doesn't it? *insert sarcastic laugh here*)

Paul's later discussion about eating (cf. Rom 14) is NOT in context of vegetarians. (Neither is the earlier discussion during the coucil of Jerusalem, Acts 15.)

However, if you feel that when you eat meat you are sinning, then don't eat meat (but do make sure you are getting proper protein from some other source)... and do not look down upon those of us who think it is okay to meat. (Again, see Rom 14.)

If you want the thrust of Paul's main argument there, then also see 1 Cor 9. (Especially verses 12b, 22-27.)

niebuhrian said...

it depends on how literal you want to take particular verses in relationship to the overall ethos of the bible...

Teri said...

well, I'm a vegetarian so in some ways I want to say yes in spite of the fact that there are several passages in which meat-eating is either allowed or assumed.

What I do think the Bible condemns is our Western practice of factory farming. That is in no way appropriate within our ethic of stewardship of the creation. So, living in the US (which I will be again shortly), I do think that the Bible suggests that we need to rethink our methods of obtaining meat or else abstain from it.