To Whom it May Concern:
Pork Is Not Food
Pastor V.S. Herrell recently posted an article, “A Kraut of Krauts”, which not only condones, but even promotes the consumption of swine, using poor translations and interpretations of several New Testament passages in order to do so. In the article he also slanders all those who may disagree with him, by labeling them with the “Judaizer”, “mongrel” or “jew” epithets as a cunning device in order to somehow discredit his adversaries before they could even reply. Now Herrell may be full of tough talk, but if he called me a “mongrel” or a “jew” to my face I’d be willing to go out into a back lot with him at any time to settle the matter man to man. I’m not attempting threats of violence or a display of boasting or zealous bravado here, but would only like to get one thing straight up front: I will not be intimidated by Herrell’s arrogance. And my ancestors having come from a small village in the Rhineland, I am just as much of a “kraut” as he is. Herrell’s article makes many other mistakes concerning the history of the White race, and also ridiculously associates the issue of swine with race and aesthetics, as if insinuating that all beautiful White people must eat pork, or one cannot possibly be beautiful or White! However those other errors shall not be addressed here.
Isaiah Chapter 66 contains a prophecy that most reasonable men agree is an end-times prophecy. In the middle of this prophecy, at verse 17, we find the following:
“They that sanctify themselves, and purify themselves in the gardens behind one tree in the midst, eating swine's flesh, and the abomination, and the mouse, shall be consumed together, saith the LORD.” The KJV, NAS, and the Septuagint are all quite similar here, so I have supplied the reading of the KJV. Isaiah’s prophecy concerns the dispersed children of Israel, who are those same Germanic pagans eating swine’s flesh in pagan idol-groves which he is describing! Yet it must be known that Herrell is a Preterist: one who believes that all Biblical prophecy was fulfilled by 70 AD and the destruction of Jerusalem. So in Herrell’s errant view of the Bible, none of the Old or New Testament prophecies could possibly be referring to any one of us today. His preterist views have seriously adverse affects on his interpretation of all things Biblical.
The crux of Herrell’s argument promoting the consumption of swine is centered around the discourse of Yahshua Christ found at Matthew 15:16-18. Herrell quotes his own AST translation of this passage, and then he paraphrases it, as follows:
“‘Are you yet also unintelligent? Do you not yet perceive that everything entering into the mouth goes to the stomach, and it is thrown into the toilet? But the things coming forth from the mouth come forth from the heart, and those make the man common’ (Matt. 15:16-18 AST).
“Once again, we could paraphrase Christ, and He would say, ‘Are you so stupid that you cannot understand that when you eat meat it goes through your digestive tract and winds up in the toilet. Meat is just an inanimate object. It does not make you impure or defile you or make you evil. Evil comes out of your own heart; out of your own thoughts, wherein you are maladjusted and in rebellion to the law of God, which is in Christ Jesus.’”
Now, was Yahshua Christ truly talking about “meat” at Matthew 15:16-18, as Herrell is claiming? While not all of the gospel accounts of everything which Yahshua Christ did and said are exactly alike, they are all records of the same or similar events, and they must all be considered true – provided the oldest and best manuscripts are the sources being used, and that there is agreement among them. One writer often recorded things a little differently than another, having his own priorities in the importance of recording what was done or said for posterity. While one writer remembered one statement which stood out in his mind, another recorded something else, or even the same thing but a little differently. Yet each account is representative of the truth of the matters. Therefore it is dishonest to build a doctrine upon any single passage in the Bible without first examining all of the related passages and considering all implications. So here I shall not address Matthew’s account, which contains neither the words “meat” nor “food”, but rather the parallel account given by Mark, found in chapter seven.
Here is Mark 7:17-19, from the Christogenea New Testament: “17 And when He had entered into a house away from the crowd, His students asked Him the parable. 18 And He says to them: ‘Thusly also are you without understanding? Do you not perceive that everything from outside entering into the man is not able to defile him 19 because it does not enter into his heart but into the belly, and it goes out into the latrine, cleansing all foods?’”
In Mark’s account, the word “food” occurs. Now some translations may have “meat”, however the word is broma, that which is eaten, food, as opposed to kreas, which is flesh, meat, a piece of meat. So it is evident that Yahshua Christ was talking in His discourse about food in general, and not of meat specifically, but especially not of unclean meats, which, as we shall see, cannot be considered food if they are not something which is normally eaten. Now the question is this: is pork, or swine, really considered to be food by the apostles and other Hebrew Israelites who heard His discourse? If this were so, then if Yahshua advocated the consumption of swine – contrary to His own laws in the Old Testament, why would Peter still show concern for such things, as we see it is recorded at Acts 10:14: “And Petros said “Not at all, master, because not ever have I eaten anything profane and unclean.” Certainly, Peter still considered many things to be “unclean”, and therefore not “food”, long after Yahshua Christ had been resurrected. Was Peter also a mongrel, as Herrell would consider all of us today who are concerned with such things? Or does Herrell not rather have evil arguments and blasphemies coming forth from out of his own heart?
While V. S. Herrell and I would fully agree on issues concerning race, the importance of purity of blood, the jews themselves, and perhaps other things, I would hesitate before following him in anything without scrutiny, yet that same scrutiny must be applied to any teacher: Study to show thyself approved, and follow no man blindly.
What follows is a section of my paper, William Finck vs. the Paul-Bashers, which is available at http://christogenea.org/content/douglas-section-75-76-77a-b-c. It addresses this same issue, with another who had argued it for reasons entirely different than Herrell’s.
<Section #75> Clayton Douglas states: “Did you know it was Saul/Paul who taught, ‘One person may have faith enough to eat any kind of food; another less strong, will eat only vegetables.’ It was his messages which convinced the world that it was now ‘perfectly OK’ to eat, well, just about anything you felt like eating ... in DIRECT VIOLATION OF GOD’S DIETARY LAWS. God’s Dietary Laws were not handed down to you to make your life difficult. God gave them to you to PROTECT YOU from sickness and disease. Paul didn’t care much about what God wanted. ‘Let them eat Pork’ became Paul’s motto. And, so God’s People became sick ... and confused. More poisoning courtesy of The Serpent.”
In reply to section <#75>: Again Clayton Douglas is a fabricator of lies, for Paul never spoke about the eating of pork, never mind Douglas’ false claim that he approved of it! The scripture to which Douglas refers here is found in Romans chapter 14, and he apparently paraphrased v. 14:3. Again, notice that he does not state as much. But because Paul said that all foods may be eaten, does that mean that he advocated eating pork? Certainly not! For if pork is not normally considered food, then it cannot be included in the category of “all foods”, even if we today do consider it to be so. Pork was not considered “food” to first century Judaeans, nor to many first century Greeks. Although earthworms and roaches are edible and contain nourishment, I certainly would not eat them even if people of other cultures do, and so I would not consider them to be “food”. Neither do I consider swine to be “food”, even though many people today do, and so I do not eat swine, and furthermore I do not consider Paul’s statement at Romans 14 as any sort of encouragement or commission to eat swine, knowing that Paul is talking about food, which swine is not! As we can fully discern from Romans chapter 14 and from 1 Corinthians chapter 10, early Christians were at odds as to whether they should eat any flesh, or meat, at all. This was for cultural reasons, and not because anything in the Scripture promoted vegetarianism. If we are ignorant of Greco-Roman history and culture, neither can we discern the context in which the gospels and epistles of the New Testament were written! We would all be as ignorant as Clayton Douglas!
Greek temples were not merely places where pagan rituals and the worship of false gods were conducted. They also served as centers for community, lounges and restaurants, centers for organized prostitution, banks and other things. Greek city-dwellers took many of their meals at these temples, drank, and often participated in the other activities in which these temples engaged. Markets were attached to the temples, where animals could be purchased to make sacrifices to the idol, or where meat from sacrificed animals could be purchased. Some of these practices were even conducted at the Temple in Jerusalem (i.e. John 2:15). Such was the dilemma of first century Christians in Greece and Rome, where it was difficult to find meat which had not been sacrificed to an idol: to a false pagan god. Such was the reason for Paul’s discourses at Romans 14 and 1 Corinthians 10:14-31, which in Paul’s perspective (contrary to Clayton Douglas) had nothing to do with swine!
Additionally, we see in Strabo’s Geography that swine was not accepted at all Greek temples, and that of the temples of Aphrodite swine was accepted at only a few (9.5.17). The famous temple of Aphrodite at Corinth was not among those which accepted swine. Strabo himself considered the eating of swine to be unclean (12.8.9), and tells us that at Comana in Pontus swine weren’t even allowed into the city. So in the Greek world, we see division on this issue in the pages of Strabo. Clayton Douglas, the Man of Scoffing, understands none of this, and like most so-called Christians today, takes Paul’s statements in these chapters entirely out of context. Paul never advocated or approved the consumption of swine’s flesh.