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Vasu Murti

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Politics and Passions - Winter 1995-96

Part 10 The Moral Basis for Vegetarianism

The moral basis for vegetarianism does not lack a theological foundation: "...vegetarianism is less a break with tradition than a return to an historical trend," writes Roberta Kalechofsky in Haggadah for the Liberated Lamb, "… there is no commandment to eat meat in the Bible, nor is there any blessing to be said for the eating of animal flesh."

The Encyclopedia Judaica adds, "...meat is never included among the staple diet of the children of Israel, which is confined to agricultural products of which the constantly recurring expression in the bible is ‘grain and wine and oil’ (Deuteronomy 11:14) or the seven agricultural products enumerated in Deuteronomy 8:8."

In a pamphlet entitled What the Bible Says About Vegetarianism: God's Best for All Concerned, Frances Arnetta, founder of Christians Helping Animals and People (CHAP), states that Christians should be "harmless as doves," and describes vegetarianism as "God's best for good health," "God's best for the environment," and "God's best to feed the hungry."

She writes:

"Vegetarianism is the diet that will once again be given by God. Jews look forward to that time as the coming of the Messiah; Christians see it as the return of the Messiah--Jesus Christ. It is prophesied in Isaiah 11:1 through 9, and in Isaiah 65--a time when, under His lordship, predator and prey will lie down side by side in peace and once again enjoy the green herb and the fruit of the seed-bearing tree. In the New Testament, Revelation 21:4 describes this as the time when ‘God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.’

"Not only is it totally Scriptural to be a vegetarian," Arnetta concludes, "but when done in service to the true and living God, it may well be as close to a heavenly lifestyle as one can get!"

Go on to: Part 11: Animal Liberation Has Its Antagonists
Return to: The Next Distraction

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