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Unclean Birds Print E-mail
Written by Prabhudas Koshy   
Sunday, 09 April 2017

God told the Israelites (or the Jews) that they should not eat certain birds, which He has classified as “unclean” birds. They are mentioned in Deuteronomy 14:12–19, “12 But these are they of which ye shall not eat: the eagle, and the ossifrage, and the ospray, 13 And the glede, and the kite, and the vulture after his kind, 14 And every raven after his kind, 15 And the owl, and the night hawk, and the cuckow, and the hawk after his kind, 16 The little owl, and the great owl, and the swan, 17 And the pelican, and the gier eagle, and the cormorant, 18 And the stork, and the heron after her kind, and the lapwing, and the bat. 19 And every creeping thing that flieth is unclean unto you: they shall not be eaten.”

There was also a list of “unclean” animals which God forbade to be eaten. But why did God call them “unclean”? Why did God forbid Israelites from eating them?

God wanted Israelites, His chosen people, to have a different way of life from the idolworshipping people who lived around them. God wanted to remind His people that they were not to live like others, but in total obedience to God. God wanted His people to know that they should not do what God forbade them to do. They were to learn to submit to God and be obedient to Him. So God said in Leviticus 10:10–11, “10 And that ye may put difference between holy and unholy, and between unclean and clean; 11 And that ye may teach the children of Israel all the statutes which the LORD hath spoken unto them by the hand of Moses.”

Although today we are not commanded in the New Testament to follow those rules of “clean” and “unclean” animals / birds, we must still remember that when God forbids something, we should never disobey God. We are expected to humbly obey God, without grumbling. We should live in a way that pleases God, not man. Let us never accept what God has called “sin” or “evil” as good. Separate yourself from all things that God has called evil.