My “DUH” Moment

OK . . . . we are trying to read through the Bible this year as a family. It may take us a little more than a year because our children don’t always have the attention span for 3 or 4 chapters a night; but our goal is to make it all the way through in a chronological order.

So we’ve been reading Genesis. And I realized something I haven’t really ever thought about before. Well, I probably was taught it in Old Testament Survey class, but we zoomed through the Old Testament so quickly in that class I barely remember most of what I learned . . . . . except the huge timeline we made, Martha, and the adorable construction paper model of the Temple we created and the very forceful way Rev. Osterhaus said the word “vomit,” and singing the books of the OT to the tune of Onward Christian Soldiers. . . but I digress.

In Genesis 1:29-31, we learn that God gave Adam and Eve and all the animals plants and herbs to eat. And, in chapter 3, after the Fall, Adam had to work a lot harder to harvest his food, but Adam and Eve and the animals were all still vegetarians.

I also noticed that when Cain murdered Abel, God didn’t require Cain to die for his sin. The death penalty wasn’t in effect.

Then the world became more violent (Gen. 6:11) and “every intent of the thoughts of [man’s] heart was only evil continually” (Gen. 6:5), and God destroyed all living things on the earth except for Noah, his wife, his sons, and their wives, and all the animals God sent to the ark for safety. Then in Genesis 9, after the waters receded, God made His covenant with Noah. God told Noah that every beast and every bird and every fish and everything will fear and dread mankind because they will be given into man’s hand. God told Noah that every moving thing was now food, just like the green herbs were food. And then God gave the command about not eating blood. And then God established the death penalty.

So animals were not eaten as meat before the flood and the death penalty didn’t exist before the flood.

Most of you are probably saying, “Yeah, Duh, I knew that.” But I hadn’t thought about it before now. I would love your thoughts about why.

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8 Comments

Filed under Bible, Christianity, thoughts

8 responses to “My “DUH” Moment

  1. I remember going for a bible study once where the leader was teaching us about Genesis. the first killing, she said, was actually done by God, when Adam felt naked and ashamed and was covered with skin by God Himself (Gen 3:21). Which was rather interesting, I felt. I’m not exactly answering your question and perhaps this entry will support vegetarians in their view that going all veg is best πŸ™‚

  2. Yes, the first killing of an animal must have been when Adam and Eve first sinned because God clothed them with animal skins. Many believe God used the animals as a sacrifice to atone for their sins and then clothed them with the skins. But there is no record of people eating animals until after the flood when God explains to Noah that now all the animals that move are for food, just as the green herbs are for food. And since God explains it as if it’s a whole new concept for Noah, I think it was a whole new concept.

    And I’m not a vegetarian. πŸ™‚

    I do wonder if the earth before the flood just was so lush and plentiful that there were so many plants and herbs and fruits and delicious things to eat everywhere that there was no need to eat meat. We know that it never rained before the flood, that there was a vast amount of water hanging over the earth, which would have made for a completely different type of climate and way for plants to grow and thrive. Then after the flood, everything was just so different, God knew people would need to eat meat to get all the nourishment we needed. Hmmmm. . . . I don’t know.

  3. Yep, I’ve heard that it’s because the climate was so dramatically different that we needed meat in order to get the nutrients we needed because the plants no longer had it.

  4. Yes – I did know this, and have thought about it before. I don’t think that means we are “supposed” to be vegetarians specifically now – in fact – I’m pretty sure that “this” girl needs meat. πŸ™‚

    I believe that the perfect human diet included nuts as protein…which most people don’t eat a lot of now. (We eat more than we used to…)

    I’ve always thought that the lack of meat-eating prior to the flood had less to do with the perfect diet (as such) and more to do with the thought that death now was a part of our lives. It is kind of a sad thought to me, but reality based, I think.

  5. Oh hey – I was looking for a way to e-mail you. Just wanted to say that I really liked the way you worded things over on Molly’s blog…particularly in the Vision Forum section. πŸ™‚ I agreed with so much of what you said, and thought you were gracious in saying it.

  6. Thanks, Holly. Your encouragement means a lot to me because I respect you.

  7. Lee

    Yes, some say that’s why Adam and Eve lived so long, even after they were removed from the Garden. It appears that vegetables were God’s original intent.

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