Is Christianity and Veganism compatible? I’ve been thinking about it a lot lately, so I recently created the “Thou Shalt Not Kill” tee to try and provoke thought on the topic. I’d like to kick off by saying ethically (and it’s products) are neither pro nor anti-religious. In fact, we support any path to an enlightened, just, and ethical life.
Is Christianity one possible path? I think so. There’s clearly lots of Christians who believe animals are simply products made by God for human use (see the James Aspey “Vegan Vs. Christian” video below), but I also know of Christian vegans who aren’t as well represented, so here are some reasons why Christians should go vegan.
Eden Was Vegan:
“And to every beast of the earth, and to every bird of the air, and to everything that creeps on the earth, everything that has the breath of life, I have given every green plant for food.” —Genesis 1:30
Eden is seen as being paradise, the stage of humanity before we fell from God’s grace – prior to original sin. Looking at this passage from Genesis, Eden (ie PARADISE) was vegan. In fact, not only does Genesis say that God gave all beings plants to eat, not once is meat or animal use referred to.
And Everything Will End Up Vegan:
“The wolf and the lamb shall feed together; the lion shall eat straw like an ox; but the serpent—its food shall be dust! They shall not hurt or destroy on all my holy mountain.” —Isaiah 65:25
The above passage talks about the paradise to come where everything will return to balance.
Thou Shalt Not Kill
The biggest motivation for the tee, “Thou Shalt Not Kill”. The 6th commandment of God’s 10 Holy Commandments doesn’t have an asterisk* next to it. Thou Shalt Not Kill, No Exceptions, Not Even For Bacon.
God Straight-Up Says No To Sacrifices
“What makes you think I want all your sacrifices?” says the LORD. “I am sick of your burnt offerings of rams and the fat of fattened cattle. I get no pleasure from the blood of bulls and lambs and goats. — Isaiah 1:11
I don’t think this needs elaboration, does it? God’s sick of your bloodshed.
Just Because You Can, Doesn’t Mean You Have To
Probably the best argument in favour of Christianity being compatible is the fact that Christianity never says that you have to kill anything. Why not play it safe and NOT kill animals just in case God doesn’t want you too? Even if the bible does say you can kill animals, it doesn’t say you have to. Looking at the above quotes I don’t think God’s particularly fond of humans killing everything he’s made.
Plenty Of Christians Already Are Vego
As proof that it all comes down to interpretation, roughly 35% of 7th Day Adventist Christians practice a vegetarian or vegan diet.
In conclusion, I think the whole vegan diet for Christians is similar as war is for Christians. Jesus was clearly a pacifist, he gave himself up to the Romans knowing they were going to crucify him. When Peter cut off a Roman soldier’s ear Jesus performed a miracle healing and stated: “he who lives by the sword, dies by the sword”. Yet there are Christian war mongers all over the world. What happened to “turn the other cheek”? Clearly cherry picking.
Obviously, Jesus was no vegan (there are plenty of references to his eating of fish) but it’s just a good idea to approach Christianity and religion in general with your own morals and interpret the teachings in a way that is in line with your own ethics.
NOTE: I have referred to God as male at least once. This isn’t to say that I believe that a God has to be male, it’s just that the Christian God is referred to as “The Father” and this topic is about Christianity specifically.