2021 Study Summary 34: A Principle With Promise
Doctrine and Covenants 89-92
“A Principle With Promise”
Doctrine and Covenants 89. Revelation given through Joseph Smith the Prophet, at Kirtland, Ohio, February 27, 1833. As a consequence of the early brethren using tobacco in their meetings, the Prophet was led to ponder upon the matter; consequently, he inquired of the Lord concerning it. This revelation, known as the Word of Wisdom, was the result. 1–9, The use of wine, strong drinks, tobacco, and hot drinks is proscribed; 10–17, Herbs, fruits, flesh, and grain are ordained for the use of man and of animals; 18–21, Obedience to gospel law, including the Word of Wisdom, brings temporal and spiritual blessings.
Doctrine and Covenants 90. Revelation to Joseph Smith the Prophet, given at Kirtland, Ohio, March 8, 1833. This revelation is a continuing step in the establishment of the First Presidency (see the heading to section 81); as a consequence thereof, the counselors mentioned were ordained on March 18, 1833. 1–5, The keys of the kingdom are committed to Joseph Smith and through him to the Church; 6–7, Sidney Rigdon and Frederick G. Williams are to serve in the First Presidency; 8–11, The gospel is to be preached to the nations of Israel, to the Gentiles, and to the Jews, every man hearing in his own tongue; 12–18, Joseph Smith and his counselors are to set the Church in order; 19–37, Various individuals are counseled by the Lord to walk uprightly and serve in His kingdom.
Doctrine and Covenants 91. Revelation given through Joseph Smith the Prophet, at Kirtland, Ohio, March 9, 1833. The Prophet was at this time engaged in the translation of the Old Testament. Having come to that portion of the ancient writings called the Apocrypha, he inquired of the Lord and received this instruction. 1–3, The Apocrypha is mostly translated correctly but contains many interpolations by the hands of men that are not true; 4–6, It benefits those enlightened by the Spirit.
Doctrine and Covenants 92. Revelation given to Joseph Smith the Prophet, at Kirtland, Ohio, March 15, 1833. The revelation instructs Frederick G. Williams, who had recently been appointed a counselor to Joseph Smith, on his duties in the United Firm (see the headings to sections 78 and 82). 1–2, The Lord gives a commandment relative to admission to the united order.
What was the first recorded “Law of Health?”
In the Garden of Eden, there was a law of health-things you should and should not eat. The Lord gave the Children of Israel a law of health. It could be called a “Word of Wisdom.” The Jews call it the correct, proper, or fit way of living, the Kashrut, or being kosher. The word kosher is also used as meaning correct. The Kashrut has been modified throughout the ages, yet some basics remain as was given at Mount Sinai.
What is the Biblical health law pertaining to meat?
In this modern age, there are some Jews who will not eat meat because there are no sacrifices, and the meat cannot be prepared in the correct way. Others will only eat meat that is kosher, that is, slaughtered in the way sacrifices were done and only eating the parts of the animal as prescribed in the Law of Moses. It may be very enlightening to know the modern explanation of Kashrut, so it is included for your reference: “The dietary laws affect a Jew every day of his life and aim to insure that the holiness of the Jewish nation will be preserved through the consumption of food which is fit and proper.” (Encyclopedia Judaica, Jr.)
How are fruits and vegetables included “kosher” eating?
“From the point of view of the dietary laws, all fruits and vegetables are permitted. However, there are certain limitations on the drinking of wine, and in Erez Israel there are restrictions applying to agricultural produce, such as the laws of tithes and Sabbatical years. However, the main concern of the dietary laws is which animals, birds and fish are fit to be eaten and how they must be prepared for consumption.” (Encyclopedia Judaica Jr.)
What animals can or cannot be eaten per Biblical law?
“The Bible classifies those animals permitted to be eaten as tahor (‘pure’) and those prohibited as tamei (‘unclean’). Animals which are permissible must have two characteristics: they must chew the cud and have cloven hooves. Among these are cattle, sheep, goats and deer. Animals which have only one of the required characteristics are prohibited; for example, the camel and rabbit which chew their cud but do not have cloven hooves, and the pig which has cloven hooves but does not chew the cud. Altogether the Bible enumerates 42 unclean animals which are forbidden.” (Encyclopedia Judaica Jr.)
What type of birds are kosher?
“On the basis of the unclean birds mentioned in the Bible, the rabbis of the Talmud compiled a list of 24 birds which are forbidden, among them birds of prey such as the vulture, raven, eagle and hawk. Although the Bible does say which birds are not clean, it does not list the clean birds. The Mishnah, however, states their characteristics: they must have a crop, a gizzard which can be easily peeled off and an extra claw. Among these clean birds are domestic fowl, pigeon and dove. Eggs from unclean birds are regarded as unclean and even the eggs of permitted birds are forbidden if they have been fertilized (usually indicated by the presence of a blood spot).” (Encyclopedia Judaica Jr.)
What kinds of fish are accepted to be eaten in a kosher diet?
“A fish is considered >clean= if it has fins and scales, which usually indicate a fish found in freshwater areas. Those without fins and scales usually live in the muddy, swampy areas and are considered unclean. In the category of unclean fish which are forbidden are shellfish such as lobster, clams, shrimp and oysters.” (Encyclopedia Judaica Jr.)
What role do insects have in the Biblical Law of Health?
“Nearly all insects are considered unclean and may not be eaten. Some species of locusts are permitted as the Talmud gives a detailed description of them. Nowadays, however not enough is known about them and they are all forbidden. It is therefore important to carefully clean and examine vegetables where insects are apt to hide (such as cabbage, cauliflower, and romaine lettuce) in order to be sure that the insects will not be eaten with the vegetable. Although the bee is a forbidden insect, its honey is permitted to be eaten.” (Encyclopedia Judaica Jr.)
How does the Bible instruct us in the method of slaughtering?
“Dietary laws are more than mere enumerations of which animals, birds and fish may be eaten. Vital to the observance of kashrut are the laws regarding shehitah or ritual slaughter. The many complex and minute regulations about how an animal or bird may be slaughtered make it necessary that a carefully trained and licensed shohet perform the slaughter. It is his duty to carry out a careful examination of the animal after it has been slaughtered to make certain that there is no defect in any of its organs. Any defect that would have led to the animal’s death within a year makes the animal considered a terefah (unclean). It is absolutely prohibited for consumption. An animal which has died a natural death or was killed by any other means than shehitah is called a nevelah and is forbidden to be eaten. None of the laws of shehitah apply to fish.” (Encyclopedia Judaica Jr.)
What parts of animals are forbidden to eat according to Jewish law?
“After an animal has been ritually slaughtered there are certain unclean portions which must be removed before the animal may be prepared for eating. The sciatic nerve and the fatty portions (helev) attached to the stomach and intestines of the animal are among these parts which are forbidden to be eaten.” (Encyclopedia Judaica Jr.)
What is “Koshering?”
“After the shehitah (slaughtering) and the removal of forbidden parts, the animal or bird must go through the process of >koshering.= Based on the prohibition of eating blood, the purpose of koshering meat is to drain the meat and draw out the blood before it is cooked. This is accomplished by either soaking and salting the meat, or by broiling it over an open flame. If the salting-soaking process is used, the meat is soaked in clean cold water for 30 minutes, and then drained on a special grooved slanted board so that the blood may flow down. The meat is then sprinkled with salt (preferably coarse salt) which must be left on for one hour, and then it is rinsed in cold water two or three times. All the utensils for the procedure must be kept separately and used exclusively for the purpose of koshering. Such a procedure is not considered effective enough to kosher the liver which is full of blood. Therefore, liver may only be koshered over an open flame.” (Encyclopedia Judaica Jr.)
What are the Jewish provisions regarding milk and meat?
“The koshering process completed, the meat is now ready to be cooked. Here too, there are important dietary laws governing the preparation of meat. The Torah commands: >Thou shalt not cook a kid goat in its mother’s milk,= a command from which three distinct prohibitions are learned: cooking meat and milk together, eating meat and milk together, and deriving any benefit from their mixture. (Milk includes all diary products such as butter, cheese and cream). In order to insure that these prohibitions would be properly observed, the rabbis ordained that separate cooking utensils, dishes and cutlery be used for dairy and meat respectively. These must be washed separately and stored separately. According to the Talmud, one may not eat milk after meat in the same meal. From this prohibition, various customs about the waiting interval between meat and milk arose in different Jewish communities. The Eastern European Jews observe an interval of six hours between meat and milk, while Western Europeans wait three hours, and the Sephardim and the Dutch one hour. The necessity of a waiting interval between meat and milk is explained by the fact that meat takes longer to digest and has a tendency to become lodged between the teeth. However, owing to the fact that milk products are digested quickly, it is permissible to eat meat directly after dairy, provided the mouth is rinsed thoroughly first. After hard cheese, though, it is customary to wait a longer period, since hard cheese takes longer to digest. Imitation ‘milk’ derived from coconuts and soybeans may be used with meat. Fruit, vegetables, eggs and fish are all >neutral= (parve) foods which may be eaten with milk or meat dishes. However, the rabbis prohibited eating fish and meat together on the grounds that such a combination is unhealthy.” (Encyclopedia Judaica Jr.)
To what extent is a kosher mixture allowed?
“If meat becomes mixed with dairy or if a forbidden food becomes mixed with a permitted food the ruling is as follows: If the quantity of the forbidden food is 1/60 or more of the mixture, it has >contaminated= the permitted food and the whole mixture is therefore forbidden. If the quantity of forbidden food is less than 1/60, the mixture is permitted provided that the forbidden food was not added intentionally for the purpose of affecting the taste. Many packaged foods sold on the market today contain such forbidden mixtures and therefore are not kosher. Among these are cookies, cakes and bread which contain animal fats. In accordance with the prohibition of forbidden mixtures, the precaution that the milk of an unclean animal should not become mixed with the milk of a clean animal gave rise to the Jewish custom of drinking halav Yisrael (Israel milk), milk obtained and bottled under the supervision of a Jew. This ensures that no forbidden substances will be added to the milk. However, in modern times, since state laws prohibit such mixtures and since >unclean= milk is more expensive than ‘clean’ milk and would probably not be mixed, many authorities permit the use of milk which has not been supervised by Jews. Nevertheless, the very pious still observe the custom of using halav Yisrael.” (Encyclopedia Judaica Jr.)
What rational would I explain in keeping the “Law of Health?”
“Attempts have been made to explain the dietary laws in various ways. Many thinkers (including Maimonides 1138-1204) have seen the dietary laws as hygienic precautions and have attempted to prove that all forbidden foods are unwholesome. Others have attempted to give the philosophical reasons for Kashrut. One such explanation is that Kashrut hallows the common act of eating and preserves the holiness of the soul through the cleanliness of the foods which the body consumes. However, the observance of Kashrut is not dependent on any explanation since the Torah commands the dietary laws without giving a reason. Therefore, a halakhic Midrash (ancient Judaic rabbinic method of bible study) states >Let not a man say, ‘I do not like the flesh of swine.’ On the contrary, he should say, ‘I like it but must not eat it since the Torah has forbidden it.” (Encyclopedia Judaica Jr.)
How faithful have Jews been in keeping the Biblical Health Law?
“Throughout the ages Jews have endangered their lives and even died as martyrs to faithfully observe the dietary laws. During the period of the Greek rule of Erez (land of) Israel (second century B.C.E.) many Jews chose to die rather than eat the unclean foods which the Greeks forced upon them. In peril of their lives, Jews carried out the laws of ritual slaughter during the Crusades. The Marranos of the Inquisition, the Cantonists of Czarist Russia, and the inmates of Nazi concentration camps all remained steadfastly faithful to the laws of Kashrut, despite all threats.” (Encyclopedia Judaica Jr.) It is clear that the biblical account of Daniel shows his humble dedication to the Lord=s principles of proper living. His unswerving obedience to the “Word of Wisdom” is an example for many people today who are committed to keeping the Lord=s health code.
Who are the people to “lead out” in representing the Lord?
From creation to the meridian of times, a particular family received the calling of providing God’s oracles, they led the way. As the family grew, they were known as the “Children of Israel.” Note that Jesus ordained His Apostles to go first to the Jews and then to the Gentiles. “. . . glory, honour, and peace, to every man that worketh good, to the Jew first, and also to the Gentile.” (Romans 2:10) With the Gospel restoration and living Oracles on earth again, the leadership responsibility was changed, “. . . and through their administration the word may go forth unto the ends of the earth, unto the Gentiles first, and then, behold, and lo, they shall turn unto the Jews.” (Doctrine and Covenants 90:9) “And the time cometh that he shall manifest himself unto all nations, both unto the Jews and also unto the Gentiles; and after he has manifested himself unto the Jews and also unto the Gentiles, then he shall manifest himself unto the Gentiles and also unto the Jews, and the last shall be first, and the first shall be last.” (1 Nephi 13:42)