Do not eat certain fats of clean animals

The Literal Commandment

It is a perpetual statute throughout your generations in all your dwellings: you shall not eat any fat or any blood.'" (Leviticus 3:17)

 

The literal commandment is that we are not to eat any "fat". The Hebrew word is חלב [chelev] which refers to the outer layer of animal fat (specifically from oxen, sheep, or goats- Leviticus 7:23) which would normally be burned up on the altar as part of a sacrifice. Other animal fat is called shuman.

 

Messiah Says

Messiah implicitly affirmed this commandment when He spoke about the Law:

"Do not think that I came to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I did not come to abolish but to fulfill. For truly I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest letter or stroke shall pass from the Law until all is accomplished. Whoever then annuls one of the least of these commandments, and teaches others to do the same, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but whoever keeps and teaches them, he shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven. (Matthew 5:17-19)

 

Some have asked about Mark 7:19. Messiah was speaking of ritual impurity resulting from eating bread with unwashed hands. We recommend this detailed study of that passage if you have additional questions.

 

Pictures of Messiah

G-d created the heaven, the earth, the sea and everything that is in them. (Psalm 146:6) He did so with an intended structure and order. Part of that intended order was that certain kinds of fats from certain kinds of animals were created for sacrifice and not for human consumption.

Attempting to transgress G-d's order in regards to these fats is similar to trying to find salvation in a person other than Messiah or marrying your brother: G-d says 'no'.

 

How Messiah Fulfilled

We know that Messiah did not sin (Hebrews 4:15) and so we know Messiah fulfilled this commandment by not eating certain fats of clean animals.

 

Traditional Observance

Traditional observance of this commandment is found in its literal sense: not eating any chelev (the outer layer of animal fat) which would normally be burned up on the altar.

 

Other Notes

We are able to fulfill this commandment today and should not eat any fat/chelev.

 

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Commandment Details

  • Mishneh Torah # 193
  • Mishneh Torah Book # 5
  • Mishneh Torah Book Holiness
  • Mishneh Torah Category 26- Forbidden Foods
  • Reference Leviticus 3:17
  • Scripture Book Leviticus
  • Chapter 3
  • Verse 17
  • English It is a perpetual statute throughout your generations in all your dwellings: you shall not eat any fat or any blood.'
  • Hebrew יז חֻקַּת עוֹלָם לְדֹרֹתֵיכֶם, בְּכֹל מוֹשְׁבֹתֵיכֶם--כָּל-חֵלֶב וְכָל-דָּם, לֹא תֹאכֵלוּ. {פ}
  • Greek 17 νόμιμον εἰς τὸν αἰῶνα εἰς τὰς γενεὰς ὑμῶν ἐν πάσῃ κατοικίᾳ ὑμῶν· πᾶν στέαρ καὶ πᾶν αἷμα οὐκ ἔδεσθε.
  • Parashah 24- Vayikra
  • Positive/Negative Negative
  • Sefer Hachinuch # 147
  • Sef. Hach. Reference Leviticus 7:23
  • Sef. Hach. Command Not to eat chelev, forbidden animal fat
  • Category Food
  • We can fullfill today Yes

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