HaShem's Food for Man

By Rabbi Dr. Hillel ben David (Greg Killian)

 


Everything in creation was originally created perfect. Because of the sin of Adam, all of creation crashed. Originally, Adam ate only vegetables and fruits and there was no excretion because his food had no negative components which needed refining. After the sin, there was a negative component to food which needed refining. This is why the Jews of the Exodus in the days of Moses did not have to go to the bathroom. The manna had no negative component,[1] therefore there was no excretion, as we read in the Midrash.

 

Midrash Rabbah - Numbers XVI:24 The Holy One, blessed be He, said to them- ‘You provoke Me by means of the very good that I have conferred upon you! When they came to the wilderness, I gave them manna to eat forty years, and none of them needed to answer nature's call during all those forty years. They ate the manna and it was transformed into flesh for them’; as it says, Man did eat the bread of the mighty (Ps. LXXVIII, 25).1 With this bread they provoked Him. One would say to the other: ‘Do you not know that we have passed many days without having had a call of nature, and that a man who does not receive such a call four or five days dies?

 

This was a great mercy from HaShem! Consider that the camp in the wilderness was more than ten miles across. This means that one would have had quite a hike just to go to the bathroom! (Excretory functions had to be performed outside the camp.)

 

Just as man is made up of a spiritual and a physical component, so too is everything that lives. Things like fruits and vegetables, as well as meat, have a physical and a spiritual component. Thus the physical component is used to nourish the body and the spiritual component is used to nourish the soul. This is why eating only those things permitted by HaShem is so important! If we eat that which is not called “food”, then we fail to nourish our souls and we become unable to absorb spiritual matters. Throughout the Tanakh and the Nazarean Codicil[2], if it is permitted by HaShem to be eaten, then it is called FOOD. Unkosher things which are eaten, are never called food by HaShem.

 

When we eat, we are extracting the positive components of food and excreting the negative components. The physical is excreted as brown stuff, and the spiritual component is the smell. As Chazal teach, the sense of smell is a direct connection to the soul.

 

Consider the following very sober thought: Since Yeshua[3] kept the whole Torah (law) therefore He ate only kosher things. He ate only what the Bible calls food. Everything He ate was kosher.

 

Could Yeshua come to your house for dinner?

 

At the marriage feast of The Lamb will everything be kosher?

 

How ought we to live in light of this? Do we want Yeshua to be able to come in and sup with us? Do we want to have fellowship with HaShem?

 

The rest of this paper will be examining what it takes to be able to have Yeshua come to your house for dinner.

 

Definitions and explanation:

 

What is food? We can understand the answer to this question by examining what happens when we stop eating. After a few days, or less, we start to become weak and faint. If we continue without food for an extended period, we will die. Therefore, Chazal (Our Sages) teach that food is used to connect the soul to the body. This explains why the korbanot (sacrifices) are called “food” for HaShem. HaShem does not eat in the sense that we eat. HaShem has no physicality.  Thus we understand that HaShem’s food is that which connects Him to our physical world. He is The “soul” of the world He is the spiritual component of our physical world. In fact, the Hebrew word korbanot means “to draw near”.

 

The only time the word "kasher" or Kosher is found in the scriptures is in the following passages. Note that the context has nothing to do with food:

 

Esther 8:5 "If it pleases the king," she said, "and if he regards me with favor and thinks it the right thing to do, and if he is pleased with me, let an order be written overruling the dispatches that Haman son of Hammedatha, the Agagite, devised and wrote to destroy the Jews in all the king's provinces.

 

Kohelet (Ecclesiastes) 10:10 If the ax is dull and its edge unsharpened, more strength is needed but skill will bring success.

 

Kohelet (Ecclesiastes) 11:6 Sow your seed in the morning, and at evening let not your hands be idle, for you do not know which will succeed, whether this or that, or whether both will do equally well.

 

Strong’s concordance shows ‘kosher’ as number 3787 kasher, kaw-share'; a prim. root prop. to be straight or right; by impl. to be acceptable; also to succeed or prosper:-direct, be right, prosper.

 

The Encyclopedia Judaica translates the word to mean "fit" or "proper". The encyclopedia Judaica says that it is to "denote food that is permitted", among other things.

 

HaShem's food for man before the flood:

 

Bereshit (Genesis) 1:26-31 Then G-d said, "Let us make man in our image, in our likeness, and let them rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the livestock, over all the earth, and over all the creatures that move along the ground." So G-d created man in his own image, in the image of G-d he created him; male and female he created them. G-d blessed them and said to them, "Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air and over every living creature that moves on the ground." Then G-d said, "I give you every seed-bearing plant on the face of the whole earth and every tree that has fruit with seed in it. They will be yours for food. And to all the beasts of the earth and all the birds of the air and all the creatures that move on the ground--everything that has the breath of life in it--I give every green plant for food." And it was so. G-d saw all that he had made, and it was very good. And there was evening, and there was morning--the sixth day.

 

Originally man and animals were vegetarians. Were mushrooms included? It says every "green" plant...

 

Bereshit (Genesis) 2:15-18 HaShem G-d took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it. And HaShem G-d commanded the man, "You are free to eat from any tree in the garden; But you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat of it you will surely die." HaShem G-d said, "It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him."

 

Eating food was the initial factor which caused man's death. The original sin was eating non-kosher food!!

 

Bereshit (Genesis) 3:17-19 To Adam he said, "Because you listened to your wife and ate from the tree about which I commanded you, 'You must not eat of it,' "Cursed is the ground because of you; through painful toil you will eat of it all the days of your life. It will produce thorns and thistles for you, and you will eat the plants of the field. By the sweat of your brow you will eat your food until you return to the ground, since from it you were taken; for dust you are and to dust you will return."

 

We are to eat of that which is from the ground.

 

The first or "original" sin was eating non-kosher food. What we eat is important! Look at all of the consequences of that first sin.

 

Bereshit (Genesis) 3:21-24 HaShem G-d made garments of skin for Adam and his wife and clothed them. And HaShem G-d said, "The man has now become like one of us, knowing good and evil. He must not be allowed to reach out his hand and take also from the tree of life and eat, and live forever." So HaShem G-d banished him from the Garden of Eden to work the ground from which he had been taken. After he drove the man out, he placed on the east side of the Garden of Eden cherubim and a flaming sword flashing back and forth to guard the way to the tree of life.

 

Eating of one tree will cause us to live forever.

 

Bereshit (Genesis) 6:21-22 You are to take every kind of food that is to be eaten and store it away as food for you and for them." Noah did everything just as G-d commanded him.

 

The only food that G-d permitted to be eaten were green plants for both man and animal!

 

G-d's food for man after the flood:

 

Bereshit (Genesis) 9:1-5 Then G-d blessed Noah and his sons, saying to them, "Be fruitful and increase in number and fill the earth. The fear and dread of you will fall upon all the beasts of the earth and all the birds of the air, upon every creature that moves along the ground, and upon all the fish of the sea; they are given into your hands. Everything that lives and moves will be food for you. Just as I gave you the green plants, I now give you everything. "But you must not eat meat that has its lifeblood still in it. And for your lifeblood I will surely demand an accounting. I will demand an accounting from every animal. And from each man, too, I will demand an accounting for the life of his fellow man.

 

G-d gave Noah and his family and descendents plants and animals to eat.

 

G-d specifically forbids eating meat with blood in it. Does this prohibit transfusions? (no!)

 

This section is used by our Hakhamim to forbid eating flesh from a live animal. Also used to forbid suicide.

 

Did G-d give Noah meat because most vegetation was destroyed in the flood?

 

Some see that there is a comparison between animals and "green" plants. That is: Just as some plants are poisonous so too are some animals permitted and some animals not permitted.

 

Some see that only properly slaughtered animals are permitted.

 

Notice that even before the flood some animals were "clean". (I know 'just' before...)

 

Bereshit (Genesis) 7:1-3 HaShem then said to Noah, "Go into the ark, you and your whole family, because I have found you righteous in this generation. Take with you seven of every kind of clean animal, a male and its mate, and two of every kind of unclean animal, a male and its mate, And also seven of every kind of bird, male and female, to keep their various kinds alive throughout the earth.

 

How did Noah "know" the clean and the unclean?

 

CLEAN means: 2889 tahowr, taw-hore'; or tahor, taw-hore'; from 2891; pure (in a phys., chem., cerem. or moral sense):-clean, fair, pure (-ness).

 

---------------- Dictionary Trace ---------------------- 2891 taher, taw-hare'; a prim. root; prop. to be bright; i.e. (by impl.) to be pure (phys. sound, clear, unadulterated; Levit. uncontaminated; mor. innocent or holy):-be (make, make self, pronounce) clean, cleanse (self), purge, purify (-ier, self).

 

Unclean food and animals:

 

A person or object can become tamay (טָמֵא) "ritually impure," in a number of ways:

  1. By contact with a "dead body"—tumat met—which, in addition to the body itself, includes significant parts of a body, soil in which the body decomposed, and others.
  2. By being present in a building or roofed structure containing a dead body (tumat ohel).
  3. By coming in contact with certain dead animals, including most insects and all lizards (enumerated in Leviticus, Chapter 11, verses 29–32).
  4. By contact with certain bodily fluids—niddah, zav/zavah - This view is held by Orthodox Judaism and remains a traditional view withinConservative Judaism. Although Conservative Judaism retains the concept of niddah and a prohibition on sexual relations during theniddah period (including childbirth), recent decisions by the Committee on Jewish Law and Standards have endorsed multiple views about the concept of zavah, as well as the tumah status of a niddah. The liberal view held that the concepts of tumah and taharah are not relevant outside the context of a Holy Temple (as distinct from a synagogue; hence a niddah cannot convey tumah today), found the concept ofzavah no longer applicable, and permitted spouses to touch each other in a manner similar to siblings during the niddah period (while retaining a prohibition on sexual conduct). The traditional view retained the applicability of the concepts of tumah, taharah, and zavah, and retained a prohibition on all contact. See Niddah. (See Leviticus Chapter 15)
  5. By giving birth to a child (the time of tumah is 7 days for a boy, followed by 33 days of taharah and 14 days for a girl followed by 66 days oftaharah).
  6. By contact with a primary source of tumah or an object that has been in contact with a primary source of tumah.
  7. By contracting tzaraath—see Leviticus chapters 13–14.

 

This mysterious Hebrew word, TaMaY, is often inadequately translated as ‘unclean’ or ‘impure’ but that misses the mark.  TaMaY is a complex concept meaning that we become subconsciously overwhelmed by a debilitating and disturbing sense of hopelessness, gloom, personal inadequacy and even death.  That causes us to sabotage our success.

 

HaShem's food for man after Sinai:

 

Vayikra (Leviticus) 11:1-8 HaShem said to Moses and Aaron, "Say to the Israelites: 'Of all the animals that live on land, these are the ones you may eat: You may eat any animal that has a split hoof completely divided and that chews the cud. "'There are some that only chew the cud or only have a split hoof, but you must not eat them. The camel, though it chews the cud, does not have a split hoof; it is ceremonially unclean for you. The coney, though it chews the cud, does not have a split hoof; it is unclean for you. The rabbit, though it chews the cud, does not have a split hoof; it is unclean for you. And the pig, though it has a split hoof completely divided, does not chew the cud; it is unclean for you. You must not eat their meat or touch their carcasses; they are unclean for you.

 

Animals that we may eat after Sinai.

 

Vayikra (Leviticus) 11:9-12 "'Of all the creatures living in the water of the seas and the streams, you may eat any that have fins and scales. But all creatures in the seas or streams that do not have fins and scales--whether among all the swarming things or among all the other living creatures in the water--you are to detest. And since you are to detest them, you must not eat their meat and you must detest their carcasses. Anything living in the water that does not have fins and scales is to be detestable to you.

 

Sea creatures we may eat after Sinai.

 

Vayikra (Leviticus) 11:13-19 "'These are the birds you are to detest and not eat because they are detestable: the eagle, the vulture, the black vulture, The red kite, any kind of black kite, Any kind of raven, The horned owl, the screech owl, the gull, any kind of hawk, The little owl, the cormorant, the great owl, The white owl, the desert owl, the osprey, The stork, any kind of heron, the hoopoe and the bat.

 

Birds we may eat after Sinai.

 

Vayikra (Leviticus) 11:20-25 "'All flying insects that walk on all fours are to be detestable to you. There are, however, some winged creatures that walk on all fours that you may eat: those that have jointed legs for hopping on the ground. Of these you may eat any kind of locust, katydid, cricket or grasshopper. But all other winged creatures that have four legs you are to detest. "'You will make yourselves unclean by these; whoever touches their carcasses will be unclean till evening. Whoever picks up one of their carcasses must wash his clothes, and he will be unclean till evening. Insects we may eat after Sinai. (John the Baptist food. Yuch!). Note also that while the "bee" is forbidden; honey is permitted because it is understood as "transferred nectar".

 

Things not eaten for other reasons

 

Bereshit (Genesis) 32:24-32 So Jacob was left alone, and a man wrestled with him till daybreak. When the man saw that he could not overpower him, he touched the socket of Jacob's hip so that his hip was wrenched as he wrestled with the man. Then the man said, "Let me go, for it is daybreak." But Jacob replied, "I will not let you go unless you bless me." The man asked him, "What is your name?" "Jacob," he answered. Then the man said, "Your name will no longer be Jacob, but Israel, because you have struggled with G-d and with men and have overcome." Jacob said, "Please tell me your name." But he replied, "Why do you ask my name?" Then he blessed him there. So Jacob called the place Peniel, saying, "It is because I saw G-d face to face, and yet my life was spared." The sun rose above him as he passed Peniel, and he was limping because of his hip. Therefore to this day the Israelites do not eat the tendon attached to the socket of the hip, because the socket of Jacob's hip was touched near the tendon.

 

A tendon attached to the socket of the hip? Our Hakhamim say it is the sciatic nerve.

 

Shemot (Exodus) 12:14-20 "This is a day you are to commemorate; for the generations to come you shall celebrate it as a festival to HaShem--a lasting ordinance. For seven days you are to eat bread made without yeast. On the first day remove the yeast from your houses, for whoever eats anything with yeast in it from the first day through the seventh must be cut off from Israel. On the first day hold a sacred assembly, and another one on the seventh day. Do no work at all on these days, except to prepare food for everyone to eat--that is all you may do. "Celebrate the Feast of Unleavened Bread, because it was on this very day that I brought your divisions out of Egypt. Celebrate this day as a lasting ordinance for the generations to come. In the first month you are to eat bread made without yeast, from the evening of the fourteenth day until the evening of the twenty-first day. For seven days no yeast is to be found in your houses. And whoever eats anything with yeast in it must be cut off from the community of Israel, whether he is an alien or native-born. Eat nothing made with yeast. Wherever you live, you must eat unleavened bread."

 

Yeast is not to be eaten during Passover, but, is permitted the rest of the year.

 

Shemot (Exodus) 21:28-30 "If a bull gores a man or a woman to death, the bull must be stoned to death, and its meat must not be eaten. But the owner of the bull will not be held responsible. If, however, the bull has had the habit of goring and the owner has been warned but has not kept it penned up and it kills a man or woman, the bull must be stoned and the owner also must be put to death. However, if payment is demanded of him, he may redeem his life by paying whatever is demanded.

 

A permitted animal becomes forbidden when it kills a man.

 

Shemot (Exodus) 22:31 "You are to be my holy people. So do not eat the meat of an animal torn by wild beasts; throw it to the dogs.

 

Some food is only dog food.

 

Vayikra (Leviticus) 3:12-17 "'If his offering is a goat, he is to present it before HaShem. He is to lay his hand on its head and slaughter it in front of the Tent of Meeting. Then Aaron's sons shall sprinkle its blood against the altar on all sides. From what he offers he is to make this offering to HaShem by fire: all the fat that covers the inner parts or is connected to them, Both kidneys with the fat on them near the loins, and the covering of the liver, which he will remove with the kidneys. The priest shall burn them on the altar as food, an offering made by fire, a pleasing aroma. All the fat is HaShem's. "'This is a lasting ordinance for the generations to come, wherever you live: You must not eat any fat or any blood.'"

 

Fat from the kidneys or all fat?

 

Vayikra (Leviticus) 7:15-20 The meat of his fellowship offering of thanksgiving must be eaten on the day it is offered; he must leave none of it till morning. "'If, however, his offering is the result of a vow or is a freewill offering, the sacrifice shall be eaten on the day he offers it, but anything left over may be eaten on the next day. Any meat of the sacrifice left over till the third day must be burned up. If any meat of the fellowship offering is eaten on the third day, it will not be accepted. It will not be credited to the one who offered it, for it is impure; the person who eats any of it will be held responsible. "'Meat that touches anything ceremonially unclean must not be eaten; it must be burned up. As for other meat, anyone ceremonially clean may eat it. But if anyone who is unclean eats any meat of the fellowship offering belonging to HaShem, that person must be cut off from his people.

 

Meat involved in sacrifices has special requirements.

 

Vayikra (Leviticus) 7:22-27 HaShem said to Moses, "Say to the Israelites: 'Do not eat any of the fat of cattle, sheep or goats. The fat of an animal found dead or torn by wild animals may be used for any other purpose, but you must not eat it. Anyone who eats the fat of an animal from which an offering by fire may be made to HaShem must be cut off from his people. And wherever you live, you must not eat the blood of any bird or animal. If anyone eats blood, that person must be cut off from his people.'"

 

Fat from cattle, sheep, and goats is forbidden.

 

Blood is forbidden.

 

Vayikra (Leviticus) 17:10-12 "'Any Israelite or any alien living among them who eats any blood--I will set my face against that person who eats blood and will cut him off from his people. For the life of a creature is in the blood, and I have given it to you to make atonement for yourselves on the altar; it is the blood that makes atonement for one's life. Therefore I say to the Israelites, "None of you may eat blood, nor may an alien living among you eat blood."

 

Blood is forbidden again - same basic consequence just emphasized.

 

Vayikra (Leviticus) 19:26 "'Do not eat any meat with the blood still in it. "'Do not practice divination or sorcery.

 

Blood is forbidden AGAIN.

 

Vayikra (Leviticus) 11:29-45 "'Of the animals that move about on the ground, these are unclean for you: the weasel, the rat, any kind of great lizard, The gecko, the monitor lizard, the wall lizard, the skink and the chameleon. Of all those that move along the ground, these are unclean for you. Whoever touches them when they are dead will be unclean till evening. When one of them dies and falls on something, that article, whatever its use, will be unclean, whether it is made of wood, cloth, hide or sackcloth. Put it in water; it will be unclean till evening, and then it will be clean. If one of them falls into a clay pot, everything in it will be unclean, and you must break the pot. Any food that could be eaten but has water on it from such a pot is unclean, and any liquid that could be drunk from it is unclean. Anything that one of their carcasses falls on becomes unclean; an oven or cooking pot must be broken up. They are unclean, and you are to regard them as unclean. A spring, however, or a cistern for collecting water remains clean, but anyone who touches one of these carcasses is unclean. If a carcass falls on any seeds that are to be planted, they remain clean. But if water has been put on the seed and a carcass falls on it, it is unclean for you. "'If an animal that you are allowed to eat dies, anyone who touches the carcass will be unclean till evening. Anyone who eats some of the carcass must wash his clothes, and he will be unclean till evening. Anyone who picks up the carcass must wash his clothes, and he will be unclean till evening. "'Every creature that moves about on the ground is detestable; it is not to be eaten. You are not to eat any creature that moves about on the ground, whether it moves on its belly or walks on all fours or on many feet; it is detestable. Do not defile yourselves by any of these creatures. Do not make yourselves unclean by means of them or be made unclean by them. I am HaShem your G-d; consecrate yourselves and be holy, because I am holy. Do not make yourselves unclean by any creature that moves about on the ground.

 

Reptiles we may not eat after Sinai

 

Vayikra (Leviticus) 11:41-45 "'Every creature that moves about on the ground is detestable; it is not to be eaten. You are not to eat any creature that moves about on the ground, whether it moves on its belly or walks on all fours or on many feet; it is detestable. Do not defile yourselves by any of these creatures. Do not make yourselves unclean by means of them or be made unclean by them. I am HaShem your G-d; consecrate yourselves and be holy, because I am holy. Do not make yourselves unclean by any creature that moves about on the ground. I am HaShem who brought you up out of Egypt to be your G-d; therefore be holy, because I am holy.

 

Insects are off limits because of G-d's holiness.

 

Ezekiel (Yehezekel) 33:24-29 "Son of man, the people living in those ruins in the land of Israel are saying, 'Abraham was only one man, yet he possessed the land. But we are many; surely the land has been given to us as our possession.' Therefore say to them, 'This is what the Sovereign HaShem says: Since you eat meat with the blood still in it and look to your idols and shed blood, should you then possess the land? You rely on your sword, you do detestable things, and each of you defiles his neighbor's wife. Should you then possess the land?' "Say this to them: 'This is what the Sovereign HaShem says: As surely as I live, those who are left in the ruins will fall by the sword, those out in the country I will give to the wild animals to be devoured, and those in strongholds and caves will die of a plague. I will make the land a desolate waste, and her proud strength will come to an end, and the mountains of Israel will become desolate so that no one will cross them. Then they will know that I am HaShem, when I have made the land a desolate waste because of all the detestable things they have done.'

 

Eating meat with the blood still in it has a more emphatic consequence.

 

Vayikra (Leviticus) 11:39-40 "'If an animal that you are allowed to eat dies, anyone who touches the carcass will be unclean till evening. Anyone who eats some of the carcass must wash his clothes, and he will be unclean till evening. Anyone who picks up the carcass must wash his clothes, and he will be unclean till evening.

 

We are permitted to eat that which dies? Apparently not without consequences.

 

Vayikra (Leviticus) 19:5-8 "'When you sacrifice a fellowship offering to HaShem, sacrifice it in such a way that it will be accepted on your behalf. It shall be eaten on the day you sacrifice it or on the next day; anything left over until the third day must be burned up. If any of it is eaten on the third day, it is impure and will not be accepted. Whoever eats it will be held responsible because he has desecrated what is holy to HaShem; that person must be cut off from his people.

 

Even permitted food must be taken at a permitted time:

 

Vayikra (Leviticus) 19:23-25 And when ye shall come into the land, and shall have planted all manner of trees for food, then ye shall count the fruit thereof as uncircumcised: three years shall it be as uncircumcised unto you: it shall not be eaten of. But in the fourth year all the fruit thereof shall be holy to praise HaShem [withal]. And in the fifth year shall ye eat of the fruit thereof, that it may yield unto you the increase thereof: I [am] HaShem your G-d.

 

Remember also that chametz, leaven, is permitted all year EXCEPT at Passover.

 

The following vision is often misunderstood. Most folks believe that it means that there are no longer requirements for kosher food:

 

II Luqas (Acts) 10:13-35 Then a voice told him, "Get up, Peter. Kill and eat." "Surely not, Lord!" Peter replied. "I have never eaten anything impure or unclean." The voice spoke to him a second time, "Do not call anything impure that G-d has made clean." This happened three times, and immediately the sheet was taken back to heaven. While Peter was wondering about the meaning of the vision, the men sent by Cornelius found out where Simon's house was and stopped at the gate. They called out, asking if Simon who was known as Peter was staying there. While Peter was still thinking about the vision, the Spirit said to him, "Simon, three men are looking for you. So get up and go downstairs. Do not hesitate to go with them, for I have sent them." Peter went down and said to the men, "I'm the one you're looking for. Why have you come?" The men replied, "We have come from Cornelius the centurion. He is a righteous and G-d-fearing man, who is respected by all the Jewish people. A holy angel told him to have you come to his house so that he could hear what you have to say." Then Peter invited the men into the house to be his guests. The next day Peter started out with them, and some of the brothers from Joppa went along. The following day he arrived in Caesarea. Cornelius was expecting them and had called together his relatives and close friends. As Peter entered the house, Cornelius met him and fell at his feet in reverence. But Peter made him get up. "Stand up," he said, "I am only a man myself." Talking with him, Peter went inside and found a large gathering of people. He said to them: "You are well aware that it is against our law for a Jew to associate with a Gentile or visit him. But G-d has shown me that I should not call any man impure or unclean. So when I was sent for, I came without raising any objection. May I ask why you sent for me?" Cornelius answered: "Four days ago I was in my house praying at this hour, at three in the afternoon. Suddenly a man in shining clothes stood before me And said, 'Cornelius, G-d has heard your prayer and remembered your gifts to the poor. Send to Joppa for Simon who is called Peter. He is a guest in the home of Simon the tanner, who lives by the sea.' So I sent for you immediately, and it was good of you to come. Now we are all here in the presence of G-d to listen to everything the Lord has commanded you to tell us." Then Peter began to speak: "I now realize how true it is that G-d does not show favoritism But accepts men from every nation who fear him and do what is right.

 

Now, in the above passage, I would like everyone to note that Peter DID NOT EAT ANYTHING! This was a VISION. Further, Peter himself tells us that the vision had absolutely nothing to do with food! It had to do with the acceptance of righteous Gentiles.

 

The following passage again emphasizes that the vision had nothing to do with food, further, it was just a VISION:

 

II Luqas (Acts) 11:1-18 The apostles and the brothers throughout Judea heard that the Gentiles also had received the word of G-d. So when Peter went up to Jerusalem, the circumcised believers criticized him And said, "You went into the house of uncircumcised men and ate with them." Peter began and explained everything to them precisely as it had happened: "I was in the city of Joppa praying, and in a trance I saw a vision. I saw something like a large sheet being let down from heaven by its four corners, and it came down to where I was. I looked into it and saw four-footed animals of the earth, wild beasts, reptiles, and birds of the air. Then I heard a voice telling me, 'Get up, Peter. Kill and eat.' "I replied, 'Surely not, Lord! Nothing impure or unclean has ever entered my mouth.' "The voice spoke from heaven a second time, 'Do not call anything impure that G-d has made clean.' This happened three times, and then it was all pulled up to heaven again. "Right then three men who had been sent to me from Caesarea stopped at the house where I was staying. The Spirit told me to have no hesitation about going with them. These six brothers also went with me, and we entered the man's house. He told us how he had seen an angel appear in his house and say, 'Send to Joppa for Simon who is called Peter. He will bring you a message through which you and all your household will be saved.' "As I began to speak, the Holy Spirit came on them as he had come on us at the beginning. Then I remembered what the Lord had said: 'John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.' So if G-d gave them the same gift as he gave us, who believed in the Lord Yeshua Mashiach, who was I to think that I could oppose G-d?" When they heard this, they had no further objections and praised G-d, saying, "So then, G-d has granted even the Gentiles repentance unto life."

 

Has G-d "cleansed" the unclean animals for food? The issue seems to be Gentiles not food. Why three (3) times?

 

Matityahu (Matthew) 15:1-20 Then some Pharisees and teachers of the law came to Yeshua from Jerusalem and asked, "Why do your disciples break the tradition of the elders? They don't wash their hands before they eat!" Yeshua replied, "And why do you break the command of G-d for the sake of your tradition? For G-d said, 'Honor your father and mother' and 'Anyone who curses his father or mother must be put to death.' But you say that if a man says to his father or mother, 'Whatever help you might otherwise have received from me is a gift devoted to G-d,' He is not to 'honor his father' with it. Thus you nullify the word of G-d for the sake of your tradition. You hypocrites! Isaiah was right when he prophesied about you: 'These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me. They worship me in vain; their teachings are but rules taught by men.'" Yeshua called the crowd to him and said, "Listen and understand. What goes into a man's mouth does not make him 'unclean,' but what comes out of his mouth, that is what makes him 'unclean.'" Then the disciples came to him and asked, "Do you know that the Pharisees were offended when they heard this?" He replied, "Every plant that my heavenly Father has not planted will be pulled up by the roots. Leave them; they are blind guides. If a blind man leads a blind man, both will fall into a pit." Peter said, "Explain the parable to us." "Are you still so dull?" Yeshua asked them. "Don't you see that whatever enters the mouth goes into the stomach and then out of the body? But the things that come out of the mouth come from the heart, and these make a man 'unclean.' For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false testimony, slander. These are what make a man 'unclean'; but eating with unwashed hands does not make him 'unclean.'"

 

The issue in this passage is unclean hands, NOT food. Messiah says that we do not have to baptize our hands before we eat.

 

Marqos (Mark) 2:23-28 One Sabbath Yeshua was going through the grain fields, and as his disciples walked along, they began to pick some heads of grain. The Pharisees said to him, "Look, why are they doing what is unlawful on the Sabbath?" He answered, "Have you never read what David did when he and his companions were hungry and in need? In the days of Abiathar the high priest, he entered the house of G-d and ate the consecrated bread, which is lawful only for priests to eat. And he also gave some to his companions." Then he said to them, "The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath. So the Son of Man is Lord even of the Sabbath."

 

The sages teach that life has precedence over the law. The purpose of the keeping the law is for us to live, not die. In this passage Messiah is apparently teaching the same thing.

 

The following is an interesting statement...repeated three (3) times!!

 

Shemot (Exodus) 23:19 "Bring the best of the firstfruits of your soil to the house of HaShem your G-d. "Do not cook a young goat in its mother's milk.

 

Shemot (Exodus) 34:26 "Bring the best of the firstfruits of your soil to the house of HaShem your G-d. "Do not cook a young goat in its mother's milk."

 

Devarim (Deuteronomy) 14:21 Do not eat anything you find already dead. You may give it to an alien living in any of your towns, and he may eat it, or you may sell it to a foreigner. But you are a people holy to HaShem your G-d. Do not cook a young goat in its mother's milk.

 

1. What is the relationship of this to firstfruits?

2. What is the relationship of a dead animal to this?

3. Why is it repeated three (3) times?

 

* * *

 

 A Guide to Keeping Kosher

Fundamental Practices of the Jewish Dietary Laws

 

Why Keep Kosher

 

In seeking a rationale behind any commandment, one must understand that the essence of a mitzvah is its emanation from G-d: a holy Divine decree designed to elevate the Jew in both body and spirit. Whatever reasons we discover to explain and heighten the importance of keeping kosher are merely theories, not meant to supersede the ultimate value of kashrut - the establishment of a bond between G-d and His people.

 

Eating is a basic function, common to all human life. We spend a good deal of our time with food: buying it, cooking it, eating it. No fewer than 50 of the 613 Biblical commandments deal with food. A Jew must approach this universal need in a spiritual as well as a physical manner, and elevate it to a holy act. by asking, "Is it kosher?", by shaping our diet to conform to G-d's dictates, we sanctify our tables, and ourselves.

 

Keeping kosher, a way of life not nearly as difficult as it at first seems, carries with it immense rewards and satisfactions. It makes a home a Jewish home; it gives our meals a unique, traditional quality; it forges a link in the grand chain of Judaism now more than 3,000 years young. Above all, it creates a special feeling in that man, woman, boy, or girl, who is making his or her life a little bit more divine.

 

How Do I Know It's Kosher?

 

The word "kosher" means fit for use according to Jewish law. Although the Torah does list the signs identifying kosher animals and fish, the intricacies of food processing today require a strict supervision by a qualified Mashgiach (kashrut supervisor). For all processed foods, it is absolutely impossible to determine the kashrut of a product strictly by examining the ingredients on a package. Federal law does not require the listing of all ingredients. A product may contain kosher ingredients but be prepared in an unkosher fashion (i.e., pans greased with animal fat); an ingredient may in itself require supervision (i.e., mono and diglycerides). Therefore, an essential part of kashrut is the symbol accompanying the product which informs the consumer that every aspect of kashrut has been observed regarding this product.

 

There are many kashrut symbols. The most widely accepted of these are the Circle-U (OU), Circle-K (OK), Chof-K, and the Triangle-cRc. Other symbols should be checked out with a competent orthodox Rabbi as to the level of qualified supervision. A "K" alone on a product does not assure its kashrut, since the "K" cannot be copyrighted and anyone may put a "K" on a product, kosher or not. The words "Kosher", "Parve", or "Kosher-style" do not assure kashrut, again for the above-mentioned reasons. Both products and establishments (butcher shops, restaurants, etc.) need proper supervision by a competent orthodox Rabbinical authority or organization.

 

Setting Up a Kosher Kitchen

 

Kashrut, there are several steps involved in setting up a kosher kitchen.

 

1) Consult your rabbi to determine what foods, utensils, appliances, and kitchen paraphernalia are kosher or may be made kosher.

 

2) Make a list of the utensils and dishes for meat and dairy meals.

 

3) Tour a supermarket with a kashrut-observing friend to familiarize yourself with kosher products.

 

4) Designate specific areas of your kitchen for meat and dairy.

 

5) Color-coordinate your meat and dairy utensils and dishes.

 

6) Designate and label baking utensils as pareve, and store them in a parve area.

 

7) Designate one sink (or one side of the sink) as meat and the other as dairy. Each should have its own dish rack, sponge, and mat.

 

8) Prepare a brief description of your kitchen's kashrut setup (such as where you keep your meat and dairy dishes and silverware) for baby sitters and house guests.

 

9) There are several organizations which provide subsidies for those converting a home to kosher. Up to 50% of the cost of your new dishes may subsidized. Contact your rabbi for details.

 

10) In the event of a mix-up in your kitchen, set aside the dish or utensil and contact your rabbi.

 

Separate Dishes and Utensils

 

The kosher kitchen has separate sets of dishes, pots, silverware, trays, and sugar and salt containers. It is advisable to have different colors or patterns for meat and dairy utensils, so as to avoid their accidentally being mixed together. Utensils should be differently designed or properly labeled "M" or "D", if possible, and kept in separate cabinets.

 

 The Sink

 

Separate sinks for washing dishes and preparing foods are preferable. If there is only one sink, dishes and silverware should not be placed directly in the sink. Separate dish pans or slightly elevated racks should be placed in the sink, and the meat or dairy dishes placed on them.

 

The sink accessories, such as dish towels, sponges, scouring pads, and draining boards, should be separate for meat and dairy, The same tablecloth, unless washed in between, should not be used interchangeably for meat and dairy. Kosher detergents and soaps must be used.

 

 The Refrigerator and Freezer

 

Meat and dairy products may be placed in the same refrigerator or freezer; however, care should be taken to prevent spilling or leaking from one shelf to another. It is advisable to designate different shelves for meat and dairy products.

 

The Dishwasher

 

It is preferable that a dishwasher be used for either meat or dairy only, but not both.

 

Small Appliances

 

A mixmaster, blender, food processor, grinder, etc. does not require a separate motor in order to be used for meat and dairy products. However, one must use separate attachments to the appliance (blades, dough hooks, glass bowls, etc.) which come into direct contact with food. Even when using separate attachments, the machine should be cleaned thoroughly after each use.

 

 The Oven and Stove

 

It is preferable to have separate ranges and ovens for meat and dairy products. For those who do not, meat and dairy products should not be baked or broiled in the same oven at the same time, even in separate and closed bake ware. One should also see that dairy products baked in an oven which is also used for meat do not absorb the splattering of meat which may drip from the top or sides of the oven.

 

Meat and dairy products may be cooked separately on the same stove, but care should be taken to avoid splattering or boiling over from one pot to another.

 

Microwave Oven

 

Again, it is preferable to have separate ovens for meat and dairy products. For those who don't, both meat and dairy food may be cooked in the same microwave oven, though not at the same time. However, separate dishes for holding food should be used for meat and dairy.

 

 Meat

 

The Bible identifies kosher meat as that which comes from an animal which both chews its cud and has split hooves, and is slaughtered according to Jewish law (Lev. 11:1-43). The abundance of laws and the necessity of skill involved in shechita (kosher slaughtering) has created regional centers where slaughtering is performed by a trained, observant Shochet with the meat then shipped to local butchers. Cattle and sheep are the most frequently used sources of kosher meat.

 

In addition to kosher meat markets (which, like all food, must be under proper Rabbinical supervision), most major supermarkets have a kosher frozen foods section and carry several varieties of pre-wrapped kosher meat.

 

Only the forequarters of a kosher animal may be eaten. The hindquarters contain the sciatic nerve and fats forbidden by the Torah, and may not be eaten. Therefore, because of the difficulty of removing the nerve and fat, real sirloin or T-bone steaks are not available.

 

 Fowl - Poultry

 

Physical characteristics are not relied upon as a means of kosher identification of fowl species. Only fowl having a tradition of being a kosher species may be used. These include: Capon, chicken, turkey, pigeon, tame duck, tame goose, tame dove. Wild birds such as wild hen, wild duck, wild goose, and birds of prey are not kosher. Fowl and poultry, like meat, must be ritually slaughtered by a qualified shochet.

 

Except for Yemenite Jews, who have a tradition of which insects are kosher (as per Lev. 11:21-22), all manner of insects are forbidden. Foods, especially vegetables, should be checked to be free of insects and worms.

 

 Kashering of Meat

 

The Torah explicitly forbids the eating of blood (Lev. 17:11) for "the life of the flesh is the blood". Therefore, after an animal is properly slaughtered, the blood must be removed. Though this is usually done by the butcher, or processing plant, one must inquire so as to be absolutely certain that the meat has been properly kashered. If the meat has not been kashered, there are two methods of removing the blood: salting or broiling.

 

 A. Broiling

 

Proper broiling of meat extracts all blood. Prior to broiling, the meat should be rinsed in cold water and lightly sprinkled with coarse salt. The meat is then immediately placed over an open flame or electric grid on a perforated tray, and broiled until at least half-done, on each side. The drippings and the pan used to collect the drippings are not kosher, and should not come into contact with the meat. The meat is then rinsed after broiling. Separate knives and forks should be set aside for use with unkoshered meat being broiled.

 

B. Salting

 

Meat must be salted within 72 hours of being slaughtered, unless the meat has been thoroughly rinsed within that time. One needs four objects for salting: 1) coarse "Kosher" salt, 2) cold water, 3) a deep tub for soaking, and 4) an inclined perforated board.

 

The meat is rinsed and submerged in cold water in the tub for one half-hour. The meat is then drained and placed on the inclined perforated board so that the blood will be able to drain away from the meat. The meat is then salted on both sides with a fine covering of coarse salt. The salt will extract the blood from the meat. The meat should then remain on the board, covered by the salt for one hour. The meat should then be thoroughly rinsed three times.

 

Liver

 

Because it contains an abundance of blood, liver can be kashered ONLY through broiling. A special pan used exclusively for broiling liver should have a top or grid with regularly spaced holes, allowing the blood to drip into the pan while the meat broils. The liver may not be broiled in its own blood. The utensils used for broiling liver should be set aside and not be used for any other purpose. The liver, after being sprinkled lightly with coarse salt, should be broiled on both sides until edible, or at least until a crust is formed. After rinsing the liver, it may be cooked in any way desired.

 

ONE SHOULD BE CAREFUL TO REMOVE THE PACKAGED LIVER FROM CHICKENS AND TURKEYS BEFORE COOKING.

 

If one did inadvertently cook with the liver inside the fowl, an orthodox Rabbi should be consulted.

 

Salt-Free Diets

 

People on an absolutely salt-free diet, may broil their meat on a grid to remove the blood before eating. Again, meat which is soaked for two hours after salting does become dietetically salt-free, but a doctor should be consulted.

 

 Eggs

 

Only eggs of kosher fowl are permissible to be eaten; eggs of non-kosher birds or fowl are not kosher.

 

A blood spot found on the white or yolk of an egg renders the entire egg not kosher. Each egg should be examined individually after cracking to determine whether there are any blood spots. In making an omelet, for example, each egg should be examined by itself before being combined with the other eggs. When boiling eggs, one should always boil a minimum of three eggs, so as to render any possible blood spotted egg in the minority.

 

Eggs are a basic ingredient in many food items, including such products as noodles, mayonnaise, and salad dressings. Therefore, all products containing eggs or egg albumen require kashrut supervision.

 

 Fish

 

Only fish with both fins and scales may be eaten. While all fish which have scales have fins as well, many fish which have fins do not have scales and are therefore not kosher.

 

There is no prohibition regarding the eating of blood from fish, nor is any ritual slaughter necessary.

 

Fish are considered pareve (neither meat or dairy – in Ashkenaz tradition. Some Sefardim treat fish like meat) and may be eaten together with milk or meat meals. However, fish should not be cooked or eaten together with meat, and one should use separate utensils for eating fish and meat.

 

A partial list of kosher fish includes: anchovies, bass, bluefish, carp, cod, flounder, haddock, halibut, herring, mackerel, pike, red snapper, salmon, sardines, shad, smelt, sole, trout, tuna, whitefish. Among the non-kosher fish are catfish, eel, porpoise, shark, sturgeon, and swordfish.

 

Crustaceans: All shellfish, such as clams, crabs, lobsters, oysters, scallops, and shrimp are not kosher.

 

Caviar: The eggs of non-kosher fish such as lumpfish or sturgeon are forbidden, as is caviar made from it. The roe (eggs) of salmon and other kosher fish is permissible, but would require kosher certification.

 

Fresh Fish: When buying fresh fish which is filleted, one must be sure that the fish was not filleted with the same knife or on a board used for filleting non-kosher fish. It is preferable to either fillet the fish yourself, or purchase fish from a store which sells only kosher fish.

 

Processed Fish: Fried fish, fish sticks, or fish patties need proper kashrut supervision, so as to be sure that the fish, oil, and other ingredients are kosher, as is the preparation of the fish.

 

Smoked Fish: Kashrut certification is needed for smoked fish products, even if the fish is whole and not filleted. Many companies which produce both kosher smoked fish (sable, salmon, whitefish) also produce non-kosher varieties (eel, sturgeon) and use the same utensils and smoke house for both. Also, smoked salmon is often sliced and packed in oil which must be certified as kosher.

 

Herring: Herring products must be certified as kosher. Pickled herring contains several spice blends which are often prepared with mono- and di-glycerides which need certification. Vinegar must be of kosher origin. Wine vinegar requires certification. Sour cream used in herring must also be certified. Chopped herring may contain bread crumbs, spices, and dressings, all of which need supervision. Some varieties of Matjes herring are made with wine and are not kosher. Schmaltz herring, while inherently kosher, must be sliced and prepared in a kosher manner, separate from non-kosher products.

 

 Dairy Products

 

Dairy products should not be assumed to be kosher merely because they are dairy. Numerous dairy products may be non-kosher unless properly supervised.

 

Cheese: All varieties of cheese require Kosher certification, including hard cheeses (American, Swiss, Cheddar, Muenster, etc.). Cheeses are often processed with rennet, which is derived from the stomach lining of animals, usually, calves. Kosher cheese requires that the rennet used be from kosher animals properly slaughtered. Some cottage cheeses and yogurts are also made with rennet and therefore need proper supervision.

 

Whey: Cheese by-products may be used only when the rennet used in the cheese manufacture is kosher. Whey is derived from the watery part of milk which is separated from the curd in cheese-making. It is used widely in ice cream and baked goods and therefore they require supervision.

 

Ice Cream: Contrary to popular opinion, ice cream must be supervised for kashrut. It contains a variety of emulsifiers, stabilizers, and flavorings which require supervision. Even when the ice cream itself is certified as kosher, one must be sure that the toppings - both flavorings and whipped cream, as well as the cones and cookies served with it, are kosher.

 

 "Non-Dairy" Products

 

Very often products such as margarine, coffee creamer, or imitation sour cream are labeled as "non-dairy". This may indicate only that the product is not a NATURAL dairy food product. It may, however, contain dairy ingredients (such as whey, sodium caseinate, etc.) and therefore is to be considered dairy. One should examine the kosher symbol and look for a "D" (for dairy) next to it or the word Pareve.

 

Sherbet: Government regulations require that any products labeled as "sherbet" contain milk. Even water ices should not be assumed to be pareve, nor should they be assumed to be kosher unless so certified, because of the flavorings and stabilizers involved.

 

 Fruits, Vegetables, and Canned Goods

 

All fresh fruits and vegetables are kosher. Processed fruits and vegetables, when in sauce, need proper supervision. Frozen vegetables without sauce are kosher. Canned fruits, because they are processed seasonally in canneries dealing only with fruits, are kosher. However, tomato juice, ketchup, canned soups, sauces, or beans (other than string beans) must be kosher endorsed. They are usually processed in plants producing similar varieties of products that contain meat, cheese, and other non-kosher food.

 

Pure frozen or fresh juice (other than grape juice) is permissible. Blended juice drinks and fruit punch , however, need kosher certification, as they may contain grape juice, flavorings and stabilizers of non-kosher origin.

 

 Baby Foods

 

All baby foods - vegetables, fruits, cereals, and puddings - must be certified kosher, since baby foods are produced in plants which also produce baby food meats, using the same equipment. Most baby cereals contain mono- and di-glycerides, which are kosher only if manufactured under supervision.

 

If your baby has a dietary need involving a product not under supervision, a competent orthodox Rabbi should be consulted.

 

 Wines, Liqueurs, and Grape Products

 

Wines and wine products, such as champagne, vermouth, brandy, and cognac must be prepared under strict Rabbinical supervision. Grape juice and wine vinegar are considered as wine and must also be certified as kosher.

 

Many alcoholic beverages have a grape base and require supervision. These include fruit liqueurs, cordials, Sangrias, and coolers. All products whose ingredients include grapes or grape flavor require Rabbinical supervision.

 

Vitamins

 

Vitamins, or the capsules in which they are contained, often contain stearates, gelatin, animal by-products, or coatings of non-kosher origin. Kosher-certified vitamins are widely available. In cases where a medical need is involved, a proper rabbinical authority should be consulted.

 

Bakeries, Baked Goods, and Breads

 

The manufacture of bread, pastries, and other baked products by a bakery requires proper Rabbinical supervision to resolve many questions. Is the shortening kosher? Are the pans greased with a kosher grease? Are the fillings, crèmes, or chocolates being used certified as kosher? Because of these and other questions, one should buy baked products from a supervised bakery or supervised packaged goods. A wide variety of kosher pastries and breads is today available at supermarkets.

 

 The Taking of Challah

 

The Torah requires that a portion of the dough used for baking be set aside and given to the Kohanim (priests). Since the destruction of the Temple, this mitzvah is fulfilled by removing a small piece from the dough and burning it. The word "challah", in fact, means dough and refers to the piece which has been separated.

 

Only breads made from wheat, barley, rye, oats, or spelt need challah separation. If one prepares baked goods using more than 4 lbs. 15 & 1/3 ozs. of flour, the following blessing is to be recited:

 

BARUCH ATA ADONAI ELOHAYNU MELECH HA'OLAM ASHER KIDSHANU B'MITZVOSAV V'TZIVANU L'HAFRISH CHALLAH.

 

Blesses art thou, HaShem our G-d, King of the universe, who hast sanctified us with thy commandments, and commanded us to separate challah.

 

Using less than the above amount, one separates challah without a blessing.

 

If one has neglected to separate the portion of dough before baking, a piece may be broken off afterwards and discarded.

 

Kosher bakeries separate challah as a routine practice.

 

 Separation of Meat and Milk

 

The Torah strictly forbids the mixing of meat and dairy products, as manifested in three categories:

 

1) Eating: not to eat any meat and dairy foods, or their derivatives together.

 

2) Cooking: not to cook, bake, roast, or fry meat and dairy products together, even for a purpose other than eating.

 

3) Having benefit: not to benefit from meat and dairy cooked together, such as selling them, doing business with them or gifting them.

 

In order to safeguard these essential laws, our Rabbis have enacted regulations to completely separate all forms of milk and meat.

 

 The Interval Between Meat and Dairy

 

Although there are different customs regarding the interval between eating meat and dairy foods, unless one has another established tradition, one should wait six hours (Ashkenaz) or three hours (Sephard) after the eating of meat or meat products. If one tastes food, but does not chew or swallow it, no waiting period is necessary. Pareve food which is cooked in meat utensils but contains no meat product, should not be mixed or eaten with dairy food. One may eat dairy food directly after eating pareve food. Similarly, pareve food which is cooked in dairy utensils but contains no dairy product, should not be mixed or eaten with meat.

 

Meat may be eaten after dairy meals following a brief interval, although some authorities require the rinsing of one's mouth, the eating of bread, the recitation of a blessing, or a half-hour wait. One's rabbi should be consulted as to the prevailing practice.

 

 Pareve Food

 

Pareve foods are those which contain neither meat nor dairy ingredients. Foods such as eggs, fish, juice, soft drinks, cereal (some cereals may have dairy ingredients), bread, fruit, vegetables, and grains, may be served with either meat or dairy (with the exception of fish, which may not be served with meat). Pareve foods may be prepared in meat or dairy pots, but should be served on the type of dish in which it was prepared (i.e., meat on meat, dairy on dairy). However, one need not wait six hours after eating pareve food prepared in a meat pot.

 

It is not necessary to have a complete set of pareve dishes. One should, however, clearly label pareve utensils as such, and be careful not to use them for meat or dairy foods. Pareve foods cut with a meat or dairy knife do not necessarily become meat or dairy; however, pareve foods cut with a sharp taste such as onion, garlic, or pickles are considered meat or dairy when cut with such a knife. As such, they should not be used with foods of the opposite type.

 

 Glassware

 

There are three categories that apply to Ashkenazic (European ancestry) Jews only and not to Sefardic (Middle Eastern & Spanish ancestry) Jews. They are:

 

(1) Drinking glasses should preferably be used only for either meat or dairy

 

(2) Glass dishes must be separate for meat or dairy if ever used with hot foods

 

(3) Glassware used for cooking or baking must be used only for meat or dairy.

 

Sefardim use glassware for either meat or dairy and to switch between meat and dairy for the same utensil merely requires normal washing.

 

Airlines, Ships, Trains, and Hotels

"Kosher" Vacationing

 

Keeping kosher while on a vacation is easier than one may assume. Airlines, ships, trains, and many hotel chains provide frozen kosher meals if requested in advance. As long as the outside wrapper of the meal is sealed and intact, it may be heated in the local oven. It is advisable when planning a trip, to consult your rabbi who can provide you with information on kosher facilities the world over or you may consult The Jewish Traveler's Guide, available at most Jewish bookstores. One should be careful of "local" supervision of food products by individuals or organizations not generally known. These local agencies are only as reliable as their Mashgichim (supervisors) and the excellence of their Kashrut standards. Most local kashrut agencies are known to the rabbis of the community who should be consulted of any question arises.

 

Weddings, Bar Mitzvahs, and Kosher Functions

 

The meal accompanying a religious ceremony such as a Bar-Mitzvah or Bas-Mitzvah, Brit, wedding, etc., is a Seudat Mitzvah, i.e., the meal itself becomes a religious occasion. As such, it is most appropriate that the meal conform to the highest standards of Kashrut observance. The availability of kosher caterers, kosher carry outs, and kosher eating establishments has greatly facilitated this need. The caterer and the entire function should be under proper Rabbinic supervision.

 

 Hospitals

 

Most hospitals offer frozen kosher meals as a service to their kosher-keeping patients. These meals may be heated in hospital ovens provided the outside wrapper is sealed and intact. In addition, to these meals, many hospitals will allow meals to be brought from home and kept in hospital refrigerators.

 

Patients on a special diet should advise their doctor or dietician that they "keep kosher". Although most special diets are compatible with kashrut, in the event of a conflict a competent orthodox Rabbi should be consulted.

 

Restaurants, Ice Cream Parlors, and "Eating Out"

 

Proper Rabbinic supervision is indispensable to keeping kosher. This applies not only to food products, but also to establishments serving food. Restaurants and stores which label themselves "kosher" are acceptable only if they are under proper supervision. Pre-packaged certified Kosher foods sold in an establishment that is not supervised may be purchased only in their original packaged form. Even restaurants which do not serve meat require proper supervision.

 

Ice cream parlors may carry a kosher brand of ice cream, but one should be sure that the accompanying items such as cones, toppings, cake, and whipped cream are also kosher.

 

In general, eating out carries with it a host of real and potential kashrut problems. It is therefore necessary to eat out only in restaurants under orthodox Rabbinic supervision.

 

 Ritual Immersion of Utensils

 

Utensils made of glass or metal that are used for preparing and eating food should be immersed in a mikveh. This act denotes the new status of the utensils, which will now be used in making the act of eating a spiritual experience. Earthenware, wood, rubber, or plastic items do not require this immersion, although there are some opinions that say that these items should be immersed without a blessing. Most mikvaot have special facilities for the immersion of utensils. The blessing upon immersion is:

 

BARUCH ATA ADONAI ELOHAYNU MELECH HAOLAM ASHER KIDSHANU B'MITZVOSAV V'TZIVANU AL T'VILAS KAYLIM.

 

Blessed art thou, HaShem our G-d, King of the universe, who has sanctified us with thy commandments, and commanded us concerning the immersion of utensils.

 

 Kashering

 

In every kosher kitchen mistakes are invariably made. Kashering is the process by which utensils made non-kosher may be restored to a kosher status. Most metal utensils CAN be kashered, and one should not assume that they have become non-kosher unless an orthodox Rabbi so declares them.

 

A Rabbi should always be consulted whenever there is a mix-up in the kitchen involving kashrut. The need to consult a competent Rabbinic authority whenever a problem or potential problem arise cannot be emphasized strongly enough.

 

Passover

 

Passover, the Festival of Freedom, carries with it a unique set of dietary requirements. In commemoration of the Jews' deliverance from Egypt, only non-leavened products are eaten, and the house is completely cleansed of leaven (chametz). This necessitates a thorough removal of all leavened foods, as well as the use of kosher-for-Passover dishes, silverware, pots, pans, and the like.

 

 Brachot - Blessings

 

The process of keeping kosher serves to remind the individual that eating, though basic to human survival, is regulated by Divine laws. The act of eating, when done in accordance with spiritual guidelines, becomes a religious and holy experience. The table becomes an alter, and the food a means of glorifying G-d by our blessings. Each of the blessings has the came opening words.

 

 BARUCH ATA ADONAI ELOHAYNU MELECH HAOLAM Blessed art thou, HaShem our G-d, King of the universe, This is followed by:

 

1. Bread HAMOTZI LECHEM MIN HA'ARETZ who bringest forth bread from the earth.

 

2. Wine BORAY PRI HAGAFEN who createst the fruit of the vine.

 

3. Cake BORAY MINAY MEZONOS who createst various kinds of food.

 

4. Fruit BORAY PRI HA'AITZ who createst the fruit of the tree.

 

5. Vegetables BORAY PRI HA'ADAMAH who createst the fruit of the earth.

 

6. Shehakol SHEHAKOL NEEYEH BIDVARO by whose word all things come into being.

 

Before eating bread, the hands are washed from a cup in a prescribed manner, and the following blessing is recited immediately before the Hamotzi:

 

BARUCH ATA ADONAI ELOHAYNU MELECH HAOLAM ASHER KIDSHANU B'MITZVOSAV VTIVANU AL N'TILAS YADAYIM.

 

Blessed art thou, HaShem our G-d, King of the universe who hast sanctified us with thy commandments and commanded us concerning the washing of hands.

 

Laws Concerning Blessings (Brachot):

 

1. All foods require a bracha before eating or drinking. Medications do not require a bracha.

2. Conversion between the recital of the blessing and the first bite of food is prohibited.

3. Upon hearing another's blessing, one should answer "Amen". Amen is not usually said after one's own blessing.

 

4. When one has washed his or her hands and recited the bracha, Hamotzi, no other blessing need be recited at the meal other than for a fruit dessert or wine.

 

5. When bread is not eaten, the various foods have their own bracha as given in the above sequence.

 

6. When one is in doubt as to the proper bracha over a particular food, the bracha "Shehakol" should be recited.

 

7. When a dish contains more than one type of food (i.e., banana split) and one can separate them, a separate bracha should be recited over each.

 

8. For baked items (pies, cakes) the bracha Mezonot is said regardless of the filling or topping.

 

9. Blessings are to be recited at the conclusion of any snack or meal. One should consult a Siddur (prayer book) for the full text of these blessings (Bracha Achronah and Birkat Hamazon).

 

Kashrut Information

 

In conclusion, one should bear in mind that the laws of Kashrut are the subject of much study and scholarship, and as the number of food products on the Market increases, so does the need to "keep up" on the latest Kashrut information. Various Kashrut magazines and bulletins are issued, as well as local circulars describing local products.

 

The single greatest source of Kashrut information can be derived from your Rabbi, who is both trained and eager to promote the important Mitzvah of keeping kosher. May your pursuance of this Divine decree be met with success and satisfaction.

 

J.A.Co.B.B.S.

 

* * *

 


This study was written by

Rabbi Dr. Hillel ben David

(Greg Killian).

Comments may be submitted to:

 

Rabbi Dr. Greg Killian

4544 Highline Drive SE

Olympia, WA 98501

 

Internet address:  gkilli@aol.com

Web page:  http://www.betemunah.org/

 

(360) 918-2905

 

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Send comments to Greg Killian at his email address: gkilli@aol.com

 



[1] Rashi Commentary for: Shemot (Exod.) 16:35 forty years Now were not thirty days missing? The manna first fell on the fifteenth of Iyar, and on the fifteenth of Nissan it stopped, as it is said: “And the manna ceased on the morrow” (Josh. 5:12). Rather [this] tells [us] that in the cakes the Israelites took out of Egypt they tasted the flavor of manna.-[from Kid. 38a]. Author’s comments:  This suggests that the matza that they ate for the first thirty days also had the same qualities as the manna.

[2] The so called ‘New Testament’.

[3] Jesus