Dietary Law

Speak unto the children of Israel, saying, These [are] the beasts which ye shall eat among all the beasts that [are] on the earth. (Lev. 11:2)

How many times a day do we ask ourselves if the “foods” we consume are what the Most High intended for meat (אכלה H402= consumption,food).

One thing we’ll find when reading the Bible is that God of Israel had strict laws regarding the diet of His people. Through the Spirit of the Most High and Christ, we will inform you of the laws of God concerning the Dietary Law.

Q: Are the Dietary Laws done away with?

A: Many of our Christian Brothers and Sisters are misinformed concerning the laws of God in general, especially the dietary law.. The principle thing that Christians must realize is that Christ did not abolish law:

Mat 5:17 Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil.

He instead did away with the things that were against us:

Col 2:14 Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross;

The Dietary Law was not against us but instead for us do to it’s health qualities.

Q:Didn’t the Dietary Law begin with Moses?

A: One of the biggest forms of misinformation is the idea that the laws concerning diet began with Moses. Those who came before Moses were given commandments on what to eat and what not to eat.



Before Moses was born, Adam was informed on what to consume in the Garden.

Gen 1:28 And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth

 Gen 2:16 And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat: Gen 2:17 But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.

A barrier was put in place on what Adam could and could not eat. When this barrier was broken by Adam after eating of the tree of knowledge, a curse was placed on all  Creation (Gen. 3:17-19). Who would’ve thought that by eating a piece of fruit would have such dire consequences? How many of us know that when when a ham sandwich is placed in front of us, we’re in the same exact position that Adam was in when offered the fruit of the tree of knowledge? Some may ask how? As Adam had a choice whether or not to consume what was deemed unlawful by the command of the Most High, we alike are presented with the same, and with our choice comes consequence.


Noah understood the difference between clean and unclean animals

Gen. 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

Q: Wasn’t Noah commanded to eat every living thing that moved:

Gen 9:3 Every moving thing that liveth shall be meat for you; even as the green herb have I given you all things. Gen 9:4 But flesh with the life thereof, which is the blood thereof, shall ye not eat.

A: The “every moving thing” only pertains to those living things which were deemed CLEAN. This same standard was given for vegetation; hence, this is why it states “even as the green herb”. The question is, was every green herb fit for consumption? Was every fruit fit for consumption? Using the example tree of knowledge, though it contained fruit it was not deemed fit to consume. If we took this stance on both the living beast and the green herb, we can now make excuses for eating pork, shrimp, crabs, lobsters, snakes, rats, people, poppy seeds (opium), poison ivy, marijuana, etc. Though this may seem far fetched, it shows the idiocy of using Genesis 9:3 to excuse eating anything you want.

Q: What about the New Testament?

A: Many New Testament scriptures are used in order to justify the eating of unclean food such as:

1 Tim. 4:1-5 (Forbidding to abstain from meats; Every creature of God is good)

Rom. 14:1-3 (One believeth he may eat all things)

Rom. 14:14 (There is nothing unclean of itself)

1 Cor. 8:8 (But meat commendeth us not to God)

It’s important to point out the fact that none of these references support the eating of unclean foods. In short,

1 Tim. 4:1-5 – The creatures referred to are only clean creatures. How do we know?

1 Tim 4:3…commanding to abstain from meats, which God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth.

Which creatures were created to be received with thanksgiving? The creatures mentioned in Lev. 11 and Deut. 14. It goes on to state “of them which believe and know the truth”.

What is the truth?

Psa 119:14 Thy righteousness [is] an everlasting righteousness, and thy law [is] the truth.

Those who know the law only ate what was commanded by the Most High. Christ being an embodiment of the the truth/law  (John 14:6) did not teach his disciples to eat unclean things. The cherry on top is verse 5 which states:

1Ti 4:5 For it is sanctified by the word of God and prayer.

Sanctified= G37. hagiazo hag-ee-ad’-zo from 40; to make holy, i.e. (ceremonially) purify or consecrate; (mentally) to venerate:–hallow, be holy, sanctify.

The only meats made sanctified, made holy, or separate by the Most High are once again found in the dietary law of Lev. 11 and Deut. 14.

 Why would one teach to abstain from meats in the first place? As we’ll show, these arguments originated with brethren who were afraid to eat meat sacrificed to idols.

 Rom. 14:1-3 – Romans 14 is an argument between vegetarians (those that eat herb) and meat eaters (those that believe that can eat all things; that are lawful of course). The argument stemmed from the fact that those who ate herbs were afraid that by consuming meat, they could possibly eat something that was sacrificed to an idol. This is why it states that they were weak (Rom. 14:2> 1Cor. 8:1,7). In order to avoid that possibilty, they decided to abstain from meat altogether. The problem arose when they felt that everyone should abstain from meat. This has nothing to do with eating pork, shrimp, crab, lobster, etc.

 Rom. 14:14 – This verse is contained in the same chapter as Rom. 14:1-3 and is dealing with the same subject of eating things not sacrificed to idols. When it states “nothing is unclean of itself”, this is only in reference to the meats that the Most High caused to be received with thanksgiving (as we have explained). Which means that sheep, oxen, goat, lamb, etc. are not unclean in their natural state. They only become unclean when they are tampered with by mankind (hence, when they are offered to an idol). But as Paul states:

 1Cr 8:4  As concerning therefore the eating of those things that are offered in sacrifice unto idols, we know that an idol is nothing in the world, and that there is none other God but one.

 In other words, idols are vain and there’s only one true God. Therefore, if there is a situation in which meat was sacrificed to an idol, it cant be… “sanctified by the word of God and prayer” (1Tim 4:5). This is the true context of praying over your food to cleanse it by the word of God. On the other hand, swine and catfish are unclean in their natural state and are still unclean even if you pray over them.

 1Cor. 8:8 – This is dealing with eating things offered unto idols; coinciding with Rom. 14. How do we know this?

 1Cr 8:1 Now as touching things offered unto idols, we know that we all have knowledge. Knowledge puffeth up, but charity edifieth.

 1Cr 8:4  As concerning therefore the eating of those things that are offered in sacrifice unto idols, we know that an idol is nothing in the world, and that there is none other God but one.

 1Cr 8:7 Howbeit there is not in every man that knowledge: for some with conscience of the idol unto this hour eat it as a thing offered unto an idol; and their conscience being weak is defiled.

 How to Identify a Clean Beast

Clean beasts are animals which are described have a parted hoof, a cloven foot and chews the cud. The term cud describes the way in which these animals consume their food. This process in modern times is know as rumination. In order to be classified as clean, the animal must contain ALL  of the criteria mentioned in Lev. 11:3 and Deut. 14:6. This is important, because there are unclean beasts which contain one of the characteristics but not all. (examples of these will be shown later).
Lev 11:3 Whatsoever parteth the hoof, and is clovenfooted, [and] cheweth the cud, among the beasts, that shall ye eat.
Deu 14:6 And every beast that parteth the hoof, and cleaveth the cleft into two claws, and cheweth the cud among the beasts, that ye shall eat.

List of Clean Beasts

Deu 14:3 Thou shalt not eat any abominable thing. Deu 14:4 These are the beasts which ye shall eat: the ox, the sheep, and the goat, Deu 14:5 The hart, and the roebuck, and the fallow deer, and the wild goat, and the pygarg, and the wild ox, and the chamois.
Keep in mind that there are other animals which are not mentioned above yet fit the criteria for a clean animal.
(An extensive list of clean beast be provided)
How To Identify an Unclean Beast
Unclean beast on the other hand may contain one or sometimes none of the criteria of a clean beasts. For example, a clean beast may be cloven foot yet it cheweth not the cud. Or, it may chew the cud yet is not cloven footed.
Lev 11:4 Nevertheless these shall ye not eat of them that chew the cud, or of them that divide the hoof…

List of Unclean Beast

Lev. 11:4…[as] the camel, because he cheweth the cud, but divideth not the hoof; he [is] unclean unto you.  Lev 11:5 And the coney, because he cheweth the cud, but divideth not the hoof; he [is] unclean unto you. Lev 11:6 And the hare, because he cheweth the cud, but divideth not the hoof; he [is] unclean unto you. Lev 11:7 And the swine, though he divide the hoof, and be clovenfooted, yet he cheweth not the cud; he [is] unclean to you. Lev 11:8 Of their flesh shall ye not eat, and their carcase shall ye not touch; they [are] unclean to you.
Deu 14:7 Nevertheless these ye shall not eat of them that chew the cud, or of them that divide the cloven hoof; as the camel, and the hare, and the coney: for they chew the cud, but divide not the hoof; therefore they are unclean unto you. Deu 14:8 And the swine, because it divideth the hoof, yet cheweth not the cud, it is unclean unto you: ye shall not eat of their flesh, nor touch their dead carcase.

How to Identify Clean Fish

Clean fish are identified as having scales and fins:

Lev 11:9 These shall ye eat of all that [are] in the waters: whatsoever hath fins and scales in the waters, in the seas, and in the rivers, them shall ye eat.
Deu 14:9 These ye shall eat of all that are in the waters: all that have fins and scales shall ye eat:
(An extensive list of clean fish will be provided)

How to Identify Unclean Fish

Unclean fish are simply identified as having not scales and fins.

Lev 11:10 And all that have not fins and scales in the seas, and in the rivers, of all that move in the waters, and of any living thing which [is] in the waters, they [shall be] an abomination unto you: Lev 11:11 They shall be even an abomination unto you; ye shall not eat of their flesh, but ye shall have their carcases in abomination. Lev 11:12 Whatsoever hath no fins nor scales in the waters, that [shall be] an abomination unto you.

Deu 14:10 And whatsoever hath not fins and scales ye may not eat; it is unclean unto you.

Though the Bible does not give a list of clean and unclean t, you can simply identify which fish are edible simply by using the criteria that is found in the Bible.

Unclean Birds

Lev 11:13 And these [are they which] ye shall have in abomination among the fowls; they shall not be eaten, they [are] an abomination: the eagle, and the ossifrage, and the ospray, Lev 11:14 And the vulture, and the kite after his kind; Lev 11:15 Every raven after his kind;
Lev 11:16 And the owl, and the night hawk, and the cuckow, and the hawk after his kind,
Lev 11:17 And the little owl, and the cormorant, and the great owl, Lev 11:18 And the swan, and the pelican, and the gier eagle, Lev 11:19 And the stork, the heron after her kind, and the lapwing, and the bat.
(An extensive list of clean birds will be provided)

List of Clean & Unclean Meats 

Clean Beasts & Cattle

Mammals That Chew the Cud and Part the Hoof

Antelope, Bison (buffalo), Caribou, Cattle (beef, veal), Deer (venison), Elk, Gazelle, Goat, Hart, Ibex, Moose, Ox, Reindeer, Sheep (lamb, mutton)

Fish With Fins and Scales

Anchovy, Bass, Black pomfret (or monchong), Bluefish, Bluegill, Carp, Cod, Crappie, Drum, Flounder, Grouper, Grunt, Haddock, Hake, Halibut, Hardhead, Herring (or alewife), Mahimahi (or dorado, dolphinfish [not to be confused with the mammal dolphin]), Minnow, Mullet, Perch (or bream), Pollack (or pollock or Boston bluefish), Rockfish, Salmon, Sardine (or pilchard), Shad, Silver hake (or whiting), Smelt (or frost fish or ice fish), Snapper (or ebu, jobfish, lehi, onaga, opakapaka or uku), Sole, Steelhead, Sunfish, Tarpon, Trout (or weakfish), Tuna (or ahi, aku, albacore, bonito, or tombo), Whitefish

Birds With Clean Characteristics

Chicken, Dove, Grouse, Guinea fowl, Partridge, Pheasant, Pigeon, Quail,Turkey


Types of locusts that may include crickets and grasshoppers

Unclean Animals

Animals With Unclean Characteristics


Boar, Peccary, Pig (hog, bacon, ham, lard, pork, most sausage and pepperoni)


Coyote, Dog, Fox, Hyena, Jackal, Wolf


Cat, Cheetah, Leopard, Lion, Panther, Tiger


Donkey (ass), Horse, Mule, Onager, Zebra (quagga)

Other Animals

Armadillo, Badger, Bat, Bear, Beaver, Camel, Elephant, Gorilla Groundhog, Hippopotamus, Kangaroo, Llama (alpaca, vicuña), Mole, Monkey, Mouse, Muskrat, Opossum, Porcupine, Rabbit (hare), Raccoon, Rat, Rhinoceros, Skunk, Slug, Snail (escargot), Squirrel, Wallaby, Weasel, Wolverine, Worm, All insects except some in the locust family

Marine Animals Without Fins and Scales


Bullhead, Catfish, Eel, European Turbot, Marlin, Mackerel, Kingfish, Paddlefish, Shark, Stickleback, Squid, Sturgeon (includes most caviar), Swordfish


Abalone, Clam, Conch, Crab, Crayfish (crawfish, crawdad), Lobster, Mussel, Oyster, Scallop, Shrimp (prawn)

Soft body

Cuttlefish, Jellyfish, Limpet, Octopus, Squid (calamari)

Sea mammals

Dolphin, Otter, Porpoise, Seal, Walrus, Whale

Birds of Prey, Scavengers and Others

Albatross, Bittern, Buzzard, Condor, Coot, Cormorant, Crane, Crow, Cuckoo, Eagle, Flamingo Grebe, Grosbeak, Gull, Hawk, Heron, Kite, Lapwing, Loon, Magpie, Osprey, Ostrich, Owl, Parrot, Pelican, Penguin, Plover, Rail, Raven, Roadrunner, Sandpiper, Seagull, Stork, Swallow, Swift, Vulture, Water hen, Woodpecker


Alligator, Caiman, Crocodile, Lizard, Snake, Turtle


Blindworm, Frog, Newt, Salamander, Toad