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I'm a Christian, married to a wonderful man, Steven, and mother to a wonderful little son. I have many interests and a few noteworthy journeys in life and I enjoy sharing them.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Word of Wisdom and the Sabbath Day

One of the requirements of the LDS church that I have a problem with, especially since reading the New Testament recently, is the Word of Wisdom.

The problem I have with it is not its suggestions. Living the way it says is not bad for a person, and helps them avoid addictions or health problems caused by certain foods. However, it is not supposed to be a commandment for Christian living. In fact, even in the Word of Wisdom, D&C 89:2 specifically says that it is "not by commandment or constraint." Most of the earliest saints, Joseph Smith himself included, didn't follow it. The current day LDS don't follow the part about eating meat:

12Yea, flesh also of beasts and of the fowls of the air, I, the Lord, have ordained for the use of man with thanksgiving; nevertheless they are to be used sparingly;
 13And it is pleasing unto me that they should not be used, only in times of winter, or of cold, or famine.

In a temple interview, the Bishop or Stake President will ask if you follow the Word of Wisdom. Yet all of these people who eat meat on a regular basis will say "yes" because its not actively taught like the rest of it is. 

They don't even drink wine for communion (sacrament)! What's up with that?! Their Word of Wisdom says its okay! JESUS did it!! But they drink tap water! Not even grape juice, which is the same as wine but not fermented! Seriously? SERIOUSLY?! At least use grape juice, people! There's white grape juice available if you're afraid of kids spilling and causing stains!

Okay, breathe...

Furthermore is the requirements of the Sabbath. First of all, let me put out there that the commandment of "keep the Sabbath day holy" and all if the subsequent requirements in doing so was part of the Law and not of grace and freedom in Christ. This doesn't meant that we can't have a day of rest or shouldn't have it. It does mean that we are not required to do anything, but instead we do it based on what is decided between us and God. For the Christian, coming to God is the ultimate rest.

So what does the Bible say about what you eat and when you worship?

Romans 14:17
For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking, but of righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit,

1 Corinthians 10
25Eat anything sold in the meat market without raising questions of conscience, 26 for, “The earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it.”
30 If I take part in the meal with thankfulness, why am I denounced because of something I thank God for?  31 So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.

Colossians 2:16
Therefore do not let anyone judge you by what you eat or drink, or with regard to a religious festival, a New Moon celebration or a Sabbath day.

1 Timothy 5:23
Stop drinking only water, and use a little wine because of your stomach and your frequent illnesses.

Hebrews 4:
9 There remains, then, a Sabbath-rest for the people of God; 10 for anyone who enters God’s rest also rests from their works, just as God did from his. 11 Let us, therefore, make every effort to enter that rest, so that no one will perish by following their example of disobedience

Its always good to eat healthy, drink healthy, and take time to rest and focus on God. However, for the Christian, doing all these things can be done anytime, any way, and any how, as long as it is good for the individual and works between him or her and God. We choose to worship on Sundays, but this doesn't mean the whole day we have to sit at home or be involved at church, doing no worldly things. Every day can be holy for a Christian, and everything we do can be for God.

I drink sometimes. I am not an alcoholic. Neither my husband or I engage terribly often, which is why it takes so long for alcohol to disappear from our fridge after purchasing it. Its usually a social thing for us. God does not hate us for it. God does not condemn us every time we drink. We are not drunkards. For some people, they don't feel that drinking even occasionally is right for them. That's okay. Some people can drink every night and still be closer to God than someone who has never touched alcohol.

I would be more confident in the drunkard or the addict going to heaven if they knew and believed the message of God, than in a holier-than-thou I've-never-touched-drugs type of person who doesn't have God in their lives even though they claim to.

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