…for every creature of God is good, and nothing is to be refused if it is received with thanksgiving. – 1 Timothy 4:4
After destroying the world with a flood, God begins again with Noah and his descendants. As with the first Adam, God renews His mandate to Noah. He calls him to “be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth.” But God now provides an expanded menu. God provides not only green herbs and fruit (Genesis 1:29), but also meat for food. God gives explicit permission for eating meat. “Every moving thing that lives shall be food for you… Even as the green herbs” (Genesis 9:3).
The apostle Paul warns Timothy of those who depart from the faith, speaking lies, “commanding people to abstain from foods which God created to be received with thanksgiving by those who believe and know the truth” (v.3). What God has made, we may eat, including meat. Nothing is to be refused. But there is one condition: that we receive the food God provides with thanksgiving. It is set apart “by the Word of God and prayer.”
Practically, we may show this by setting apart our meals to God through prayer and reading the Bible. As one writer says, “Every meal is a dialogue with heaven.” There is the saying, “Christ is the head of the home, the unseen guest at every meal, the silent listener to every conversation.” May our meal practices reflect a life of thanks for God’s abundant grace in Jesus for all who trust in Him for salvation from sin. He sets us free from manmade rules to enjoy what He provides.
Suggestions for prayer
In light of our busy lives and distractions, let us ask God for His grace to take the time to enjoy the food He provides, giving thanks and enjoying table fellowship.
Rev. Tony Zekveld currently serves as missionary-pastor in the Hope Congregation in East Brampton, Ontario, sent by Covenant Christian Church (URCNA) of Wyoming, Ontario. Rev. Zekveld and his wife, Arley-Ann, have five children and, so far, eight grandchildren. This daily devotional is also available in a print edition you can buy at Nearer to God Devotional.