Hoof and Mouth
Scripture tells us what is approved for eating and what is not approved. Both Deuteronomy and Leviticus lay out the requirements. Let’s take a closer look:
Chewing the Cud
Deuteronomy 14:4-8 – “You may eat of every animal that has the hoof cloven in two, and which chews the cud.”
Animals that chew the cud are basically those that eat only the plants and vegetation – grass, hay, etc. These animals also frequently have more than one stomach, allowing them to chew and chew and chew and digest. The same food is eaten over and over again giving more nourishment each time it is eaten! Humans are also supposed to chew and chew and chew and digest Yahweh’s word, over and over again, in other words: to diligently search the word, each time receiving more nourishment and gaining new insights!
The Split Hoof
Deuteronomy 14:4-8 – “You may eat of every animal that has the hoof cloven in two.”
Split hoofs allow the animal to navigate difficult terrain, to walk on both hard and soft surfaces, or difficult and easy areas, and to escape predators. Split hoofs allow the animal to be very quick and agile, allowing both direct and directionless travel. In other words, an animal with split hoofs can easily and quickly traverse all kinds of terrain. Judaism has survived due to its ability to survive in all environments. Humans often must make split decisions, or must decide which direction to take when there is a split in the road or path! Humans are to chew on Yahweh’s word so that they are able to easily and traverse all kinds of diverse situations in which they may find themselves.
Clean vs. Unclean
Deuteronomy 14:21 – “You shall not eat of anything that dies of itself: you may give it to the foreigner living among you who is within your gates, that he may eat it; or you may sell it to a foreigner: for you are a holy people to Yahweh.”
Clean animals eat plants, in other-words chew the cud, but also have split hooves. Unclean animals may chew the cud but not have split hoofs. Or, they may have split hoofs but not chew the cud. In many instances, these unclean animals kill and eat dead things with the blood still in. Scripture tells us that we are what we eat. So, eat clean animals if you want to be set apart from everyone else, to be holy to Yahweh! All humans can eat any food they want, but the choices one makes determines if one is clean or unclean. Deuteronomy 14 even says it is okay to sell or give unclean food to the foreigner to eat.
Past, Present and Future
Leviticus 11:4-7 – “You shall not eat of the hare because he did not divide the hoof; the camel, because he does not divide the hoof; and the coney because he will not divide the hoof; they are unclean to you.”
Holiness has everything to do with what one puts in one’s mouth, takes in through the eyes or ears! So why did Yahweh use the examples of the camel, coney, and hare when speaking of the animals one cannot eat and remain clean?
The Hebrew word for split, or divided is parac [פָּרַס H6536]. If you put the letter Mem [מָפָּרַס] in front of it, the word becomes does not split. If you put the letter Yud in front of it, the word becomes will not split [יפָּרַס], and if you put the letter Heh both in front and behind it, the word becomes did not split [תפָּרַסת]. The hare did not split the hoof – he has toes; the camel does not split the hoof – his hoof is webbed and therefore does not split; and the coney has paws and will not split the hoof – all three of these animals cannot split their hoof. The hare did not, the camel does not, and the coney will not. Past, present, future!. When we judge we are not just to look at a person’s present state, but are to take into consideration both the past and the future states as well!
1 Peter 1:16 – “You shall be holy, for I am holy.”
Holiness has everything to do with what one puts in one’s mouth, takes in through the eyes or ears! All humans can eat any food they want, but the choices one makes determines if one is clean or unclean. Eating only animals that chew the cud and have a split hoof is a guide to holiness and drawing closer to Yahweh. Chewing the cud represents chewing and digesting Yahweh’s word, over and over again, each time receiving more nourishment and gaining new insights! We are to chew on Yahweh’s word so, like an animal with split hoofs, we are able to easily and traverse all kinds of diverse situations in which one may find themselves.
Prophecy continues to unfold as foretold by the Hebrew Prophets. The day is coming when Yahweh will show his strength on the mountains of Israel. What is prophesied will come to pass, what is foretold will be made known. Time is short – Yeshua Ha’Mashiach is coming soon – get busy reaching the lost.
Full Scriptures Quoted
Leviticus 11:4-7 – “Nevertheless these shall ye not eat of them that chew the cud, or of them that divide the hoof: as the camel, because he chews the cud, but divides not the hoof; he is unclean unto you. And the coney, because he chews the cud, but divides not the hoof; he is unclean unto you. And the hare, because he chews the cud, but divides not the hoof; he is unclean unto you. And the swine, though he divide the hoof, and be cloven-footed, yet he chews not the cud; he is unclean to you. Of their flesh shall ye not eat, and their carcass shall ye not touch; they are unclean to you.”
Deuteronomy 14:4-8 – “These are the animals which you may eat: the ox, the sheep, and the goat, the hart, and the gazelle, and the roebuck, and the wild goat, and the ibex, and the antelope, and the chamois. Every animal that parts the hoof, and has the hoof cloven in two, [and] chews the cud, among the animals, that may you eat. Nevertheless these you shall not eat of them that chew the cud, or of those who have the hoof cloven: the camel, and the hare, and the rabbit; because they chew the cud but don’t part the hoof, they are unclean to you. The pig, because it has a split hoof but doesn’t chew the cud, is unclean to you: of their flesh you shall not eat, and their carcasses you shall not touch.”
1 Peter 1:13-16 – “Therefore prepare your minds for action;£ discipline yourselves; set all your hope on the grace that Jesus Christ will bring you when he is revealed. Like obedient children, do not be conformed to the desires that you formerly had in ignorance. Instead, as he who called you is holy, be holy yourselves in all your conduct; for it is written, “You shall be holy, for I am holy.”