“Is Eating Pork a Sin?”

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Is eating pork a sin? It was mentioned to me by a friend that eating pork is forbidden and he said that Bible says that you won’t go to heaven if you eat pork. Didn’t Jesus say that what makes the person dirty is what comes out from his mouth and not the food that he takes in? Please give me some supporting verses on your response.

It is true that under the terms of the Mosaic Law given to Israel, pork was forbidden. However, God is no longer relating to mankind under the terms of this covenant. Rather, we are under the terms of the New Covenant (see Hebrews 8, for instance). Under the New Covenant, pork is no longer forbidden. Indeed, in Mark 7:14-23, Jesus clearly declares that all foods are clean. The same thing is affirmed by the Apostle Paul in Romans 14.

Bottom line, you can eat as much sausage, bacon, and pork chops as you like!

Shalom,

Michael Gleghorn
Probe Ministries

Dr. Michael Gleghorn

Dr. Michael Gleghorn is a research associate with Probe Ministries. He earned a B.A. in psychology from Baylor University, a Th.M. in systematic theology from Dallas Theological Seminary, and a Ph.D. in Theological Studies (also from Dallas Theological Seminary). Before coming on staff with Probe, Michael taught history and theology at Christway Academy in Duncanville, Texas. Michael and his wife Hannah have two children: Arianna and Josiah. As a family, they attend Frisco Bible Church, where Michael and Hannah are involved in various ministries. His personal website is michaelgleghorn.com.

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4 Comments
  1. Barry 2 years ago

    I am curious to know and to learn if full intercourse as a single woman is forbidden according to the bible – Yes or not? I am asking for a detaied straight answer as long I am in conflict with my girlfriend telling me she cannot have intercourse because the Bible…

    Thank you for your professional advice,
    Barry

  2. Sue Bohlin
    Sue Bohlin 2 years ago

    Hello Barry,

    All sexual expression is to be contained in what the book of Hebrews calls the “marriage bed.” There are 44 references to porneia, the Greek word for sexual behavior outside of marriage, in the New Testament, as sin. So not only is full intercourse for a single woman forbidden, any kind of sexual behavior before marriage is outside God’s plan and design for human sexuality.

    God is not a cosmic killjoy; since He created us, He fully knows the power of sex and the dangers of engaging in it outside of the safety of a marriage covenant. His rules limiting sexual expression to marriage are given as His good gifts to protect us, much like the guard rails on a treacherous mountain road keep us from getting hurt as we careen off the cliff to the rocks below.

    For more information, I suggest our article What God Says About Sex.

  3. Abigail 1 year ago

    I have a question, how can you say that you can eat pork but when the messiah came he said he’s not here to do away with the law but fulfill it? In other words wouldn’t that mean all the mosaic laws are still to be kept and the 10 commandments? I’m pretty sure after the messiah died everyone didn’t just up and start eating pork so I’m just wondering.

  4. Michael Gleghorn Author
    Michael Gleghorn 11 months ago

    Hello Abigail,

    Thanks for your letter. The question concerning how the Mosaic Law is to be related to the New Covenant is both difficult and controversial (at least, in the details). Fortunately, however, the question which you have asked can be more easily answered.

    First, I take it that Jesus’ statement in Matthew 5:17: ““Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them,” should be understood in terms of Jesus’ personal fulfillment of the true intent of the Mosaic Law in all its particulars. In addition to fulfilling the Mosaic Law, Jesus also fulfilled all the prophecies concerning his first advent.

    Jesus did not come to abolish the Law or the Prophets, but to fulfill them. And this he has done. As one commentator has observed, Jesus fulfilled the Law “by obeying it perfectly” (Louis Barbieri, Matthew, in Bible Knowledge Commentary, 30). Hence, through faith in Christ, Jesus’ perfect righteousness can now be imputed to his followers. Indeed, this is how it has to be if anyone is to have a righteous standing before God, for no one else has ever kept the Law in all its particulars (nor can any of us do so).

    This, I take it, is what Paul tells his readers in Romans 3:21-28:

    “21 But now the righteousness of God has been manifested apart from the law, although the Law and the Prophets bear witness to it— 22 the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe. For there is no distinction: 23 for fall have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, 25 whom God put forward as a propitiation by his blood, to be received by faith. This was to show God’s righteousness, because in his divine forbearance he had passed over former sins. 26 It was to show his righteousness at the present time, so that he might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus. 27 Then what becomes of our boasting? It is excluded. By what kind of law? By a law of works? No, but by the law of faith. 28 For we hold that one is justified by faith apart from works of the law.”

    ​In other words, God is now pleased to “justify” (or “declare righteous”) those who put their faith in the person and work of Christ (which work involved, at least in part, fulfilling the Law and the Prophets). Through the believer’s union with Christ (through faith), his perfect righteousness is imputed to us. Hence, in God’s sight, the one who has faith in Jesus is viewed as having fulfilled the law (for Jesus fulfilled it on our behalf).

    When Christ died for the sins of the world, the promised New Covenant was inaugurated (e.g. “This cup that is poured out for you is the new covenant in my blood” – – Luke 22:20).

    This covenant was prophesied by Jeremiah (31:31-34):

    31 “Behold, the days are coming, declares the LORD, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and the house of Judah, 32 not like the covenant that I made with their fathers on the day when I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt, my covenant that they broke, though I was their husband, declares the LORD. 33 For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, declares the LORD: I will put my law within them, and I will write it on their hearts. And I will be their God, and they shall be my people. 34 And no longer shall each one teach his neighbor and each his brother, saying, ‘Know the LORD,’ for they shall all know me, from the least of them to the greatest, declares the LORD. For I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more.”

    ​This promised New Covenant (which is distinguished from the Old, Mosaic Covenant) was inaugurated in and through the death and blood of Christ. God is now no longer relating to Israel, much less all the Gentile nations, under the terms and conditions of the Old “Mosaic” Covenant. This covenant has been superseded by a new (and better) covenant; namely, the new covenant (see Hebrews 8 for more on this).

    Of course, this does not mean that there has been any major change in the moral law which God delivered to Israel on Sinai. The Old Covenant has been abrogated and the New Covenant has been inaugurated, but nine of the ten commandments are reiterated under the terms and conditions of the New Covenant (all, in fact, except the Sabbath commandment). Not only is this so, but as one can see from the passage quoted from Jeremiah above, the Lord writes his “moral” law within the believer’s heart – – and through his Holy Spirit even helps the believer to obey this law to some extent (though the believer never does this perfectly in this life – – in part, because of lingering unbelief, resulting in a degree of faithlessness). Nevertheless, God is progressively sanctifying his people and making them holy throughout their lifetimes.

    While the moral law remains generally the same, however, the civil and ceremonial laws originally delivered to Israel have been completely abrogated and are no longer binding upon anyone. This includes animal sacrifices in the tabernacle or temple (if any), along with all the food laws, etc.

    Indeed, even before his death, Jesus himself declared all foods clean, thus essentially abrogating the Mosaic food laws (see Mark 7:14-23, particularly the parenthetical comment in v. 19). Of course, you are right in observing that such practices did not end overnight. Indeed, such practices continue to this day among observant Jews and some converts to Judaism. But the fact that such practices continue does not mean that God still requires them of anyone. The Old Covenant has been superseded by the New Covenant through the death and blood of Christ. God is now relating to humanity through this new (and better) covenant. And one of the ways in which the New Covenant is distinguished from the Old concerns the food laws. These are a thing of the past, as Jesus himself made clear. This is why the believer in Jesus is now free to eat a pork-chop or ham sandwich (should he or she want to).

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