Friday, July 31, 2020

Does Mark 7 really suggest that Yeshua declared all foods clean?

The short answer is:  NO!  Unfortunately, some Hebrew Roots types are teaching that it does.  So, let's take a look at Mark 7:14-23 in context.

MARK 7:14. And Y’shua called all the crowd and said to them, Hear me all of you and understand, 15.  There isn’t anything that is on the outside of a man that enters into him that is able to defile him.  But the thing that goes out from him, that is the thing that defiles a man.  16. He who has ears to hear, let him hear! 

17. And when Y’shua entered into the house away from the crowd, his disciples asked him about that saying. 18. He said to them, You are likewise slow to understand. You do not know that everything which enters into a man from the outside is not able to defile him. 19. Because it does not enter into his heart, rather into his belly and is cast out by excretion, which purifies all the food. (AENT)

More on this in a moment, but first, it's imperative to know that most Greek Bible versions in Mark 7:18-20 have ADDED the sentence, "Thus Jesus declared all foods clean" (or some form thereof). Example, here's a sample from the NIV:

Mark 7: 18 "Are you so dull?" he asked. "Don't you see that nothing that enters a man from the outside can make him 'unclean'? 19 For it doesn't go into his heart but into his stomach, and then out of his body." (In saying this, Jesus declared all foods "clean.") (NIV)

Truth is, Yeshua never uttered those words! This sentence was added in order to support the idea that today we are allowed to eat anything we want!

God was clear from the beginning about what we could and couldn't eat. Leviticus 11 and Deuteronomy 14 provide a list of animals that are not to be eaten as food; and included in this list of "unclean" foods are some of man's favorites: pork, shrimp, lobster, crab, catfish, squid, rabbit, squirrel, etc.

The New Testament, on the other hand, seems to indicate that God changed His mind somewhere along the line, which is absolutely untrue!

Here is what the original documents stated (i.e., the Khabouris Codex - a copy of the oldest "New Testament" ever discovered, which some scholars date between 120 - 160 AD):

MARK 7:18. He said to them, You are likewise slow to understand. You do not know that everything which enters into a man from the outside is not able to defile him. 19. Because it does not enter into his heart, rather into his belly and is cast out by excretion, which purifies all the food.20. But anything that goes out from a man is that which defiles a man.

21. For from the inside, from the heart of the sons of men proceeds evil thoughts, adultery, fornication, theft, murder, 22. Extortion, wickedness, deceit, lust. An evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness. 23. All these evil things, they do proceed from within a man and defile him. (AENT)

The AENT footnote explains the following:

"This chapter showcases one of the greatest discussions of oral versus written Jewish law that exists in these writings of the Renewed Covenant. In many ways this presages the heated exchanges that would be recorded in the Talmud some 200 years later.

"However, a major misunderstanding of this verse found its way into the modern translations with the parenthetical comment "in so doing Y'shua declared all foods clean." Neither Aramaic nor early Greek manuscripts include this in the text, which is clearly an attempt by Gentile or Christian editors to abandon Torah's dietary laws.

"The point being established is that if you plot things like murder, lies, adulteries and so forth, then why be concerned about the food you eat, when weightier things are making you much more unclean than your food? Even if a person kept a perfectly kosher diet, but had such unclean thoughts, such a one would rank among the most unkosher of people. See Luke 11:40."  (End of footnote.)

Now, take a look at this:

ROMANS 14: 14. I know indeed, and am persuaded by Master YHWH (who is) Y'shua, that there is nothing which is unclean in itself; but to him who thinks any thing to be unclean, to him only it is defiled. (AENT)


"The context of this discussion (verse 2) concerns meat versus a vegetarian diet. There is no discussion here about unclean foods according to Torah, because this is already clearly understood by Greek followers of Mashiyach. However, many twist this verse to teach that unclean food was made clean by Paul, which is a lie.

"Paul was joined together with the other Shlichim in Jerusalem when the Ruach haKodesh spoke through Ya'akov HaTsaddiq, and instructed the non-Jewish converts to avoid unclean foods; i.e., foods sacrificed to idols, and blood. Notice also in Acts 15:20-21 that the expectation of the non-Jewish converts was that they would learn Moshe (Torah) as they grew in their relationship with Mashiyach and his people.

"Anything fit to be 'food' is required to be from a 'clean' animal and be properly prepared. The issue is to not question the good intentions of a host who by tacit agreement would have made an effort to drain the blood from the meat, as Torah requires. It was and is considered rude to go into the kitchen of your host, right before a meal, to act as a 'kosher policeman.' If your host erred, it would be he, not you, who transgressed; therefore, don't cause an uproar over this issue during the meal."  (End of footnote.)

Now, check this out:

ACTS 10:10. And he hungered and desired to eat. And while they prepared for him, a stupor fell over him. 11. And he saw heaven being opened and a certain garment being held by four corners. And it resembled a great linen cloth. And it was descending from heaven to earth. 12. And there were in it all creatures of four legs, and creeping things of the earth, and birds of heaven. 13. And a voice came to him that said, "Shimon! Rise up. Slaughter, and eat!"

14. And Shimon said, "(Elohim) forbid, my Master, because I have not ever eaten anything that is defiled and unclean!" 15. And again a second time a voice came to him that (said), "That which Elohim has cleansed, you should not consider defiled!" 16. And this happened three times, and the garment was taken up to heaven. (AENT)


"Gentiles are called to enter into the Malchut (Kingom) Elohim to follow Mashiyach and observe Torah; this is not about the consumption of unclean food. Yeshua casts demons into a herd of swine Matthew 8, Mark 5, Luke 8. Swine meat is unclean, demons are unclean; Y'shua destroys both. Peter never ate unclean animals before or after this vision; followers of Y'shua don't eat unclean foods.

"The Hellenized Christian church endorsed eating unclean foods, because non-Jews have always eaten it as a cultural normative. It is a continuum of pagan culture. Isaiah 66:17-24 clearly prophecies of a rebellious people who dine on swine's flesh, eat mice and choose to defy the Word of YHWH and His Mashiyach.

"Gentiles must not assume that these teachings single them out as unclean; Yehudeans are equally as unclean when choosing to defy YHWH and His Mashiyach (see Haggai 2:14; Ezekiel 44:22; Ezra 9:10-10:1; Isaiah 30:6-12; 65:2, 3; Jeremiah 5:22-31). It is very important to differentiate between that which is Kosher according to YHWH, and religious 'tradition.'

"If unclean food is prohibited for Jewish followers of Yeshua, it is also prohibited for non-Jewish followers; the Kingdom of Elohim is not divided. If unclean food has been proven unhealthy, then it is unhealthy for Jewish and non-Jewish bodies alike; there is One Mashiyach and One Torah."  (End of footnote.)

Following is an excerpt from Carmen Welker's book, "Should Christians be Torah Observant?" which literally sums up this whole issue:

"The passages in Romans are dealing with animals YHWH gave us to eat and whether they are ceremonially clean and can be eaten at that time. Even in Peter's vision (Acts 11), Peter would never have eaten the treif (non-kosher) animals.

"The vision was to show that, as Peter knew which animals were clean and which were not because as God had shown him, thus Peter was to accept the Gentiles as God had now shown him they were "clean", that is 'accepted'.

"The rest of the passage in Acts 11 shows that this is the correct interpretation and what the vision was all about (see Acts 11:18).

"Those who don't know their Bibles very well will argue that, since the death of Jesus, we can eat whatever we want. But, since Malachi 3:6 declares that God does NOT change, why would He have changed his mind about what constitutes 'clean' and 'unclean' foods? Why would the foods listed in Leviticus 11 and Deuteronomy 14 now be okay to eat?"

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