I am not interested in getting into a evolution vs creation argument here. What I am interested in is what the Bible and Jesus says about food, diet, and low carb eating. I think it says a lot and aligns very nicely to Paleo. What do you say?
UPDATE: Those interested should go read Chris Masterjohn's post about this over at The Daily Lipid.
[In] Gen 9:2-3,
“And the fear of you and the dread of you shall be upon every beast of the earth, and upon every fowl of the air, upon all that moveth [upon] the earth, and upon all the fishes of the sea; into your hand are they delivered. Every moving thing that liveth shall be meat for you; even as the green herb have I given you all things.”
God is now commanding all animals shall be food for man... The death and roasting of an animal should always remind us of the judgment of God, and our need of a Savior. Every time we eat meat therefore, it should remind us of our need of Christ.
[Then in] Gen 18:1,
“And the LORD appeared unto him in the plains of Mamre...”
We then continue in verse 7 and 8,
“And Abraham ran unto the herd, and fetched a calf tender and good, and gave [it] unto a young man; and he hasted to dress it. And he took butter, and milk, and the calf which he had dressed, and set [it] before them; and he stood by them under the tree, and they did eat.”
God gives us a menu of what He eats personally so there is no mistaking it. He is eating butter (saturated animal fat), milk (raw, full animal fat, not refrigerated), and the calf. (Red meat, which is saturated animal fat).
As we read in Acts 10:11-14,
“And saw heaven opened, and a certain vessel descending unto him, as it had been a great sheet knit at the four corners, and let down to the earth… Wherein were all manner of four-footed beasts of the earth, and wild beasts, and creeping things, and fowls of the air, and there came a voice to him, Rise, Peter; kill, and eat. But Peter said, not so, Lord; for I have never eaten anything that is common or unclean. And the voice [spake] unto him again the second time, what God hath cleansed, [that] call not thou common. This was done thrice: and the vessel was received up again into heaven.”
God repeats His message in the New Testament, telling Peter three times so there can be no mistake. Then God records it twice in the Bible. We have been therefore, divinely assured it is in accordance with God’s will to eat beef or pork, tuna or shark, insects or reptiles, birds of the air.
And finally, a comment on vegetarianism:
1 Tim 4:1-4,
“Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils; Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron; Forbidding to marry, [and commanding] to abstain from meats, which God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth. For every creature of God [is] good, and nothing to be refused, if it be received with thanksgiving, for it is sanctified by the word of God and prayer.”
God states, in no uncertain terms, those who preach the abstaining of meats are preaching the doctrines of devils, speaking lies and hypocrisy.
He offers a recap at the end of the post. Here's some highlights:
Once Adam sinned, eating meat became the standard, as the death of animals’ points to our need for Christ
God uses Butter, Raw Milk, and Red Meat in the Bible and eats them personally to teach us that they are good, acceptable and healthy
Clean and Unclean dietary laws know as the ceremonial laws were given to the Children of Israel only for spiritual teaching, but the New Testament ushered in a new era of the gospel and the unclean laws were done away by God most definitely
All food is to be made clean by thanksgiving to God, each time we eat, we remember Him who faithfully feeds us
The removal of some of the key foods in the Bible, Butter, Raw Milk, Salt, Red Meat etc. [causes] physical damage to humanity...
Hope this helps!
Good gracious people. Let's not be bitter! This IS relevant. A lot of Christian sects have fasting protocols, for example, that make following a paleo protocol difficult. And even those of us that aren't religious are likely to have family members who follow a religion and it's nice to be able to talk to them about this. Many clergy are ignorant of nutrition and it's often not helpful to consult them. For example, a priest told my aunt that the paleo diet is a morally decadent diet....way to miss the point.
What I told my grandparents is that the type of wheat and wheat products that are available today are completely different than what is mentioned in the Bible. The bread of Jesus was very coarse, fairly flat, and low in gluten.
The problem is that the Bible is pretty open to interpretation, so you can pretty much use it to support any dietary philosophy....
But I have to correct some of the bitterness here. In quoting Mosaic law to prove how ridiculous the Bible is, you are forgetting that Christianity teaches that Jesus fulfilled that law and you don't have to follow it anymore.
"But, Christians don't believe in evolution... or the paleolithic period... (In fact, they don't believe in the first half of the neolithic period either)."
Um, some Christians do. Not all Christians are literalists.
As a fellow believer, I have encountered this personal soul searching myself. What I discovered was basically, as believers and followers of Christ, we can eat anything. Not meaning that we should, but our options are many. Primal type diets are based upon science and are therefore documented and proven. This style of eating actually does agree with biblical ideology once you look beyond the "usual" bible passages. Furthermore, if you read this site, and other similar sites, personal testimonies from others, irregardless of their spiritual beliefs, support this WOE as most beneficial. Remember that the foods we have today were not the same as the foods that were found or raised during biblical times. Genetic modifications and agricultural changes have morphed them into something else. Don't get hung up on this "Ezekiel Bread" mentality. That whole passage has been misinterpreted. (For a good perspective on that read http://heartscanblog.blogspot.com/2010/06/ezekiel-said-what.html). Read the Bible and determine what to do yourself. My recommendation is to start with the Book of Acts and go through Paul's letters to the churches. Pray for guidance and most importantly, listen. Just my opinion. Blessings, Mike
I'm a Christian. Whilst I try and have my faith flow through all areas of my life, I just don't see my diet selection as that big a deal in that regard. Fasting is something relevant to both Christianity and paleo though - so a nice fit.
I'm a Christian and currently switching over to a Paleo way of eating. I am eating this way b/c it makes sense for me. I don't scrutinize every line in the Bible and try to glean the meaning I want from it. I think we were all given brains for a reason and the Bible is just a guide. A reference book, if you will. Read it, study it, and then remember that the world exists outside the Bible.
I don't think that what the Bible tells us indicates what our diets should be anymore than what clothing we should wear or what kind of car we should drive. The message I get from it is probably different from the message that you (or any other person) get from it.
The point is, if you are a Christian with a solid foundation of belief, your beliefs will differ from nearly every other Christian you meet b/c the Bible isn't the end-all, say-all. That's what your personal relationship with God is all about.
For me, my foundation of belief includes taking care of myself and being as healthy as I can be. That happens to include following a Paleo way of eating.
Yes, I am. However, I hold my faith as dealing with existential realities. It and science are not by any means enemies. They ask different questions and are interested in different aspects of reality and experience. "What does it mean to be a person who is alive and in a predicament?" is different from "What are the mechanism that allow life to happen?" They can inform each other but only to a point.
Does paleolithic nutrition align with Christian spirituality? I really don't think that they inform each other much either way. As the paleo diet can help people feel better and experience reality in a more full, worthwhile manner, I can probably use it as a tool to fulfill some of the ethical 'duties' of a Christian. But that connection isn't especially captivating to me. True, yes, but not captivating. Oh and the pesky do I believe in evolution question? I don't care either way. I find it to be a beautiful, helpful and compelling heuristic.
The work of Walker Percy does a very beautiful job exploring the distinction between science and post-modern spirituality especially in his essay "A novel about the end of the world." Peter Rollins does some great philosophical work setting up Christianity in its proper philosophical frame work as a deconstructive anti-religion. GK Chesterton also does a nice job setup the non-sense framework of Christianity in A Generous Orthodoxy. The chapter "The Ethics of Elfland" is deserving of close attention.
There is nothing in the Bible that would oppose eating a Paleo Diet. Unlike some Eastern religions (in particular, Hinduism) the Bible is full of examples showing that all types of food can be eaten. The only particular dietary restrictions applies to certain days of the year, in which fasting may be prescribed. Nevertheless choosing a paleo diet should be based on a personal decision that you made, and the scientific evidence that supports it.
For the creationist types I just say god put grains on the earth for birds to eat. Adam and Eve never had a milling machine. They ate meat, fruits and vegetables. For the rest of us I describe it in terms of actual evolution.