Monday, December 9, 2013

It bothers me to eat meat... is it ok to be a vegetarian?

Yes, it is ok to be a vegetarian as long as you understand it is not required by God. There is nothing wrong with eating meat. The Bible makes it clear that God has given us animals for food. The Apostle Paul gave this instruction in (1 Timothy 4:1-5),
But the Spirit explicitly says that in later times some will fall away from the faith, paying attention to deceitful spirits and doctrines of demons, by means of the hypocrisy of liars seared in their own conscience as with a branding iron, men who forbid marriage and advocate abstaining from foods which God has created to be gratefully shared in by those who believe and know the truth. For everything created by God is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with gratitude; for it is sanctified by means of the word of God and prayer.
Although there is nothing wrong with eating meat, there are some people who make a choice to not. This is their right. We have the freedom in Christ to eat the food of our choice. You may choose to not eat meat and I may choose eat meat  as long as it does not become a matter of condemnation and as long as we do not force our views on each other. We are each entitled to our opinions about food. The teaching of (Romans 14:1-4) applies in this situation:
Now accept the one who is weak in faith, but not for the purpose of passing judgment on his opinions. One person has faith that he may eat all things, but he who is weak eats vegetables only. The one who eats is not to regard with contempt the one who does not eat, and the one who does not eat is not to judge the one who eats, for God has accepted him. Who are you to judge the servant of another? To his own master he stands or falls; and he will stand, for the Lord is able to make him stand.
The answer to the question above is simply “eat however your conscience compels you”. The book of Romans words it in this way:

But he who doubts is condemned if he eats, because his eating is not from faith; and whatever is not from faith is sin. (Romans 14:23)
By Cliff Sabroe - Quotes from NASB95