(Below is the first recorded occasion in Scripture where God permits the eating of ‘meat’ after some 1700 years of Creation; a consideration of the biblical restriction on certain animal “meats”;

It is the continuing and current Will of God that all human beings eat only certain ‘meats’, if they choose to eat ‘meat’. It is sin against God to eat contrary to His Will in His Word.

(Genesis 9:1-7):

1 ‘Then God blessed Noah and his sons, saying to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number and fill the earth. 2 The fear and dread of you will fall upon all the beasts of the earth and all the birds of the air, upon every creature that moves along the ground, and upon all the fish of the sea; they are given into your hands. 3 Everything that lives and moves will be food for you. Just as I gave you the green plants, I now give you everything. 4 But you must not eat meat that has its lifeblood still in it. 5. And for your lifeblood I will surely demand an accounting. I will demand an accounting from every animal. And from each man, too, I will demand an accounting for the life of his fellow man. 6 “Whoever sheds the blood of man, by man shall his blood be shed; for in the image of God has God made man. 7 As for you, be fruitful and increase in number; multiply on the earth and increase upon it’’’.

–Verse 1: Following the Great Flood upon the earth (chapters 6-8), God repeats the instruction given to Adam and Eve in Genesis 1:28 by blessing Noah and His sons and telling them to be fruitful and to increase in number and fill the earth. God has not since changed this instruction in Scripture. Human beings are still required to be productive and responsible stewards of the Earth and to increase in number and fill the earth.

–Verse 3: This is the first time that the Bible records God permitting human beings to eat ‘meat’ after some 1700 years of Creation according to Bible chronology.

God says to Noah and his sons that ‘everything that lives and moves will be food’ for them in regards to meat in the same way that He gave Adam and Eve every green plant to eat in Genesis 1:29. Though, in doing so, it is important to discover what this “everything” means. Does it literally mean that human beings are allowed to consume any meat and animal they desire? (Bibleref.com) considers this briefly:

‘At this point in God’s relationship with humankind, no restriction is mentioned about defining certain animals as edible or inedible: clean or unclean. This may have been understood, in the sense that Noah would have considered those animals not previously defined as “clean” as inappropriate to eat (Genesis 7). The other possibility is that humans may have been free to eat animals categorized as “unclean” until God made them off-limits for His people in the Law (Leviticus 11, Deuteronomy 14).’

As the comments above reveal, in verse 3, God did not mention which foods were defined as edible and inedible. That said, I believe the comments make an important point about how God had previously instructed Noah to bring both clean and unclean animals into the Ark (Genesis 7:2-4; ch 8; 20) which obviously reveals that Noah knew which animals were edible (“clean”) and which were not.

Therefore, I assert that God’s distinguishing between clean and unclean animals in Genesis 7 is consistent with His instruction to Adam and Eve in Genesis 1:29 concerning which types of (“vegan”) foods were permitted to be eaten before meat was introduced into the human diet. Thus, Genesis 1:29 reads: ‘Then God said (to Adam and Eve), “I give you every seed-bearing plant on the face of the whole earth and every tree that has fruit with seed in it. They will be yours for food’”.

We can see here that at Creation God gave human beings a diet of plants that bear seeds and trees that produce fruit. Thus, although human beings were instructed in Genesis 9:3 that “everything” had been given to them to eat in terms of meat, I suggest that out of dietary and bodily propriety the meat that were to be consumed by humans were likewise foods that were fit for human consumption (“clean”) as seen with God’s distinguishing between “clean” and “unclean” animals in Genesis 7, and which is consistent with His specific instructions in Genesis 1:29 concerning the types of plants to be eaten and the trees to eat from as stated above.

Therefore, it can be concluded that God qualifies His use of the word “everything” in Genesis 9:3 by reference to “every green plant” which as seen does not literally mean the first human beings ate any plant and tree produce that they saw which obviously would be unhealthy and in many cases dangerous for the human body.

-In this regard, Leviticus chapter 11 and Deuteronomy chapter 14 are very useful for knowing those ‘meats’ that God instructs as fit for human consumption and those that are not, which is sin if consumed. Some of the animals in these chapters that God forbids all human beings from eating today by virtue of His instructions to His Example nation Israel are:

Rabbit, Hare, Coney, Camel, Eagle, Vulture, Pig, Ostrich, Bat, Raven, Falcon, Sea gull, Stork, Hawk, Kite, Owl, Rat, Lizard, Fish/’Seafood’ that are without scales and fins.

Importantly, it should be further noted that the animals above relate to those “meats” that are not healthy for human bodies everywhere, and is not just relating to the Israelites. The reason “example nation” above is stated is because God chose the Israelites to serve as the ‘example’ and ‘guide’ to all other nations on earth in His giving of the Law and His Word to them first (Rom 1:16), and which is illuminated in His naming of them as His “firstborn son” (Exod 4:22) and which denotes that God similarly presides over and instructs other “children” of His which are the rest of the world.

Further, as stated, the issue lies with the fact that God established which foods are healthy and are to be consumed for all human bodies. Pertinently, by divine logic, then, the Salvific Work of Christ on the Cross does not in any way overturn or negate the fact and truth that God has instructed that all humans have a ‘restricted’ diet according to His wisdom and for that matter it is logical and wise to say that it is not healthy for anyone anywhere to eat for instance snake or lion or tortoise “meat” or anything else God has revealed as “unclean” or unhealthy to consume in Leviticus 11 and Deuteronomy 14.

* Two important brief mentions here.

In Mark 7:19 Jesus states in various translations that all foods are ‘purified’ or ‘clean’. This must be read in context.

In Jesus saying this, He was referring to the chapter’s context where He revealed that it was not necessary for the Israelites to ‘ritually’ wash their hands by vain tradition before they ate, and that, in not doing so, they would still be “clean” in a physical body health sense. That is, a focus of Jesus was that not having ritually washed hands did not affect the cleanliness or otherwise of foods eaten. So, with Jesus saying that all foods are ‘purified’ or “clean”, He was simply also revealing that ritualistic hand washing does not cause otherwise clean or healthy foods to be “unclean” or unhealthy.

In any event, the central issue in teaching by Jesus was that the mere consumption of foods in the absence of falsely ‘traditional’ and therefore unnecessary hand washing did not ‘defile’ a person or make food “unclean” but that rather it was evil thoughts and schemes and acts arising from people’s hearts that defile people (vv. 20-23).

That is, Jesus’ indirect aim was in effect not to ‘officially’ label specific foods as either clean or unclean, or healthy or unhealthy, or people the “same”. Rather, it was to expose that the continuing observance of false tradition by the Pharisees and scribes and the Jews as a whole arose from evil hearts (v. 21) and thus such ‘traditionalists’ were ‘defiled’ or corrupted by their evil thoughts and actions such as the (false) traditons of men (vv. 7-8).

Secondly, on this, we find further in the New Testament an important reality in regards to a ‘side’ truth concerning healthy and unhealthy foods. Specifically, this is in regards to certain “meats” the first century believers regarded as acceptable in God after the Ascension of Christ.

Briefly, in Acts chapter 10, Peter receives a vision from God where He shows him all kinds of animals and says to Peter, “kill and eat” (Acts 10:13).

Peter responds by exclaiming that he cannot eat anything unclean, or unhealthy in God to which God responds that what God has cleansed Peter should not call common, or unclean. Later in Acts 10:28, Peter has become aware that the “unclean” animals were not referring to animals as such but to gentiles who God had “cleansed” and were to also be recipients of the Gospel of God (Rom 1:16).

The important issue to mark in this account is that we clearly see that Peter made a point to show his understanding of what “meats” (or so he thought), were healthy and unhealthy.

This shows that Peter, his fellow believers and the Jewish people at large were people that had always followed the dietary teachings of God that are contained in Leviticus 11 and Deuteronomy 14. Therefore, importantly, these believers and Israelites as a whole necessarily act as the clear examples to the rest of the world who are God’s Creation that God’s health Rules are consistent with Jesus’ teaching ‘before’ the Cross in Mark chapter 7 above that there is no conflict or change concerning what is healthy and unhealthy and in any event as stated above Mark 7 is not referring to God’s dietary laws.

Therefore, to conclude in this respect, there is perfect consistency and harmony across the Scriptures in the Old Testament and before and after the Cross which reveal God’s ‘dietary’ teachings are applicable for all people everywhere, which began with God’s “first-born son” Israel (Exod 4:22). That is, God had always intended that the example of the Israelites as taught by Him concerning ‘meat’ and every other thing would in turn be taught and spread across the world as stated by Jesus in the context of the Great Commission which included the need to teach and ‘immerse’ all people in everything that He had commanded them and not only ‘Salvation’ specifically (Matt 28:18-20).

Accordingly, God’s dietary Rules need to be taught by both Jewish and non-Jewish believers to the whole world today in order to glorify God that we are One people and one ‘kind’ who have the ‘same bodies’ and are therefore subject to the same overrarching dietary and health Rules of God.

–Verse 4: (“But you must not eat meat that has its lifeblood still in it”).

Leviticus 17:10-14 states:

10″ ‘Any Israelite or any alien living among them who eats any blood-I will set my face against that person who eats blood and will cut him off from his people. 11 For the life of a creature is in the blood, and I have given it to you to make atonement for yourselves on the altar; it is the blood that makes atonement for one’s life. 12 Therefore I say to the Israelites, “None of you may eat blood, nor may an alien living among you eat blood.” 13″ ‘Any Israelite or any alien living among you who hunts any animal or bird that may be eaten must drain out the blood and cover it with earth, 14 because the life of every creature is its blood. That is why I have said to the Israelites, “You must not eat the blood of any creature, because the life of every creature is its blood; anyone who eats it must be cut off.”

Deuteronomy 12/22-25:

22 “Eat them (animals) as you would gazelle or deer [“clean”]. Both the ceremonially unclean and the clean may eat. 23 But be sure you do not eat the blood, because the blood is the life, and you must not eat the life with the meat. 24 You must not eat the blood; pour it out on the ground like water. 25 Do not eat it, so that it may go well with you and your children after you, because you will be doing what is right in the eyes of the Lord”.