Are we bound by the deitary laws, since there already “unclean” animals before the Law was given?


I came across a very interesting question recently from a Facebook friend. I must claim I am not an expert on this subject. But I do find the issue of great importance. Here is the question

“Was wondering what is your thoughts on Noah and the clean and The not clean animals? some People in the HRM try to argue that the dietary laws are from the beginning. When God told moses (he means Noah here) bring clean and unclean animals unto the ark, they say refers to the dietary laws of being clean and unclean, that what they sayGen. 7:2 Of every clean beast thou shalt take to thee by sevens, the male and his female: and of beasts that are not clean by two, the male and his female. 

Gen. 7:8-9 Of clean beasts, and of beasts that are not clean, and of fowls, and of every thing that creepeth upon the earth, There went in two and two unto Noah into the ark, the male and the female, as God had commanded Noah”


Now why did I say this is an important issue? Paul tells that the Christian’s relationship with the Law emded at the cross. He also tells us that teh Law was abolished for a believer in Christ. See Colossians 2 and Ephesians 2. But many protacters argue that the part of the Law that was destroyed was merely the ceremonal and not the moral. I beg to differ, Paul tells us God forgave us of ALL our sins whenHe nailed tne Law to the cross. See

Colossians 2:13-1413 When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your sinful nature, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins, 14 having canceled the written code, with its regulations, that was against us and that stood opposed to us; he took it away, nailing it to the cross.


As such the issue had a greater dimension. If dietary laws do apply before Moses the surely these laws are not part of the Law given at Sinai. The Levitical law still applies to us. This is dangerous. Paul tells us if we keep part of the Law we are bound by the Law. 

Here is my answer. 

I should think these people are actually crutching at straws. Look at Acts 10. Acts 10:12-14

12 It contained all kinds of four- footed animals, as well as reptiles and birds. 13 Then a voice told him, ‘Get up, Peter. Kill and eat.’
14 ‘Surely not, Lord!’ Peter replied. ‘I have never eaten anything impure or unclean.’

These ‘animals’ would include the animals mentioned to Noah. 

See what the Lord says, ‘Acts 10:15-16
15 The voice spoke to him a second time, ‘Do not call anything impure that God has made clean.’
16 This happened three times, and immediately the sheet was taken back to heaven.’ 

This happen at a time when Peter refused to share Jesus with Cornelius a Gentile. The reason he did not do it is because he was unclean under these dietary and ceremonial laws.

In any event the unclean animal in Genesis 7 is different from the ones mentioned in the Law of Moses. Leviticus  5:2 speaks about defiled animals. As to what amounts to an unclean animal, we look to in Leviticus. 11:2. The food mention is talking again about defiled food. However the word ‘unclean’ in Genesis 7 does not mean defile. It speaks about animals which were cross bred. That is animals which has been cross bred. It is not the same.

The word “unclean” in Genesis 7 means “mixed” whereas the word “unclean” in Levitcus means “foul”. As such Genesis 7 is not proof that deitary laws apply to us. 

Jesus has made all things for us. In fact aspects aspects of the Law has been fulfilled in us by Jezus. See Romans 8:3-43 For what the law was powerless to do in that it was weakened by the sinful nature, God did by sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful man to be a sin offering. And so he condemned sin in sinful man, 4 in order that the righteous requirements of the law might be fully met in us, who do not live according to the sinful nature but according to the Spirit.

All the righteous requirement of the Law. All!  

As such what we are ask to partake? The real food for the believer is the body and the blood of Jesus. The body which is broken for us to bear our sins (see Hebrews 10) and his blood that takes it away. Selah!

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