By Martin Cisneros
The F.A.Q.s are more fast paced with simply highlighting some of the "frequently asked questions" that I've received over the years, from different aspects of how to apply this teaching to explaining why the usage of animal slurs is "profane." Why is the term for a female dog, or another word for a "donkey" considered using profanity in society? I answer that and many other questions of conscience here.
49. Why is it wrong to call someone either a bitch or a jack ass? Why are the names of animals used in slang, frustration, or anger considered profanity?
Well, it's profane to say God d*** because God is not a damner. Christ is the Saviour, or in the Greek text the "Restorer" of all of creation. And though His remoulding process often involves fire, water, and shaking, His goal is love and kindness forevermore. In like manner, when it comes to using animal's names in vain, (or profanely,) it's profane to use the names of animals in anger, because 99.99% of the time, when you're calling someone a bitch or an ass, they are not behaving with the character of a bitch or an ass.
People usually think of a donkey or of a favorite female dog in a more favorable light. Animals are generally more intelligent and more sensitive than the kinds of people that people that are often in anger are using their names in association with. So, it's a "profanity" because it's denying the dignity of animals that God gave them. To recognize the dignity that God intended for animals is not inherently to place them on a level with human beings.
It's to simply give them the place that God intended for them, and that God now intends for them under this greater covenant of blessings promised to them in the Hosea 2:18 and Jeremiah 31:27-28 covenant. It's just another form of speciesism, that's a cousin of any of the "N" words that have been used against those of African descent. It's derogatory and it's profane from the nature of it's presumptuousness and mean spiritedness.
50. Is there anything in favor of this Covenant that we can take away from St. Paul’s teachings that are otherwise often used to try to disprove compassion-based theologies and philosophies by well meaning opponents of this message?
First of all, the bottom-line of Paul’s comments in Romans 14 and 1Corinthians 8 regarding eating animals is that if a Christian brother is deeply disturbed by the eating of animal flesh, then Paul not only advises against eating animal flesh but also says that he’ll personally never eat it again!
Whatever tones in Paul’s writings that people try to extrapolate in favor of eating animals from Paul’s writings are simply not supported by the texts in question. Paul’s apparent aggravation in some translations can be a matter of the perspective that some people approach Paul’s epistles assuming. It can also be a matter of how many times that St. Paul had to address those particular matters to where his nerves were wearing thin with the whole subject because of how ever many times he may have already in person said that he’d acquiesce in those matters or give up that ground that some believers might be tempted to consider among their liberties.
We don’t have personal, first-hand knowledge of how many times that St. Paul had to address these matters. Also, many times translations of documents from one language to another can reflect the biases of the translators, or as in the case of the Bible, translations can reflect traditions of interpretation and traditions of translation that might fudge the absolute truth a bit.
Secondly, if 1Corinthians chapter 8 and 1Timothy chapter 4 can be said to nullify the influence of false religions in the behalf of food that’s otherwise validated by the Word of God and prayer, then we may gently contend that emergency vegan food relief organizations, such as "Food For Life" that are run by Hindus may be freely supported by Christians without regards for the religious beliefs of the Hindus involved so long as it is acknowledged that we are supporting emergency vegan food relief and not the religious doctrines and traditions of other religions.
All Christians would concede that it would be 100% best to support exclusively Christian organizations that are providing emergency vegan food relief in disaster areas or otherwise impoverished regions of the world. And though all Christians should strive to lead every man, woman, and child to Jesus Christ, St. Paul seems to clearly tell us that those issues are independent of food issues.
So, where we have a Biblical mandate that’s growing before us with regards to animals and a very clear implication that we should be supporting vegan food relief projects at every opportunity, until a Christian alternative clearly exists, (which doesn’t appear to as of when I’m writing this,) it still is a part of the responsibility of Christians to support the feeding of people in severely impoverished regions of the world, or where the relief is needed for other reasons.
51. Do Christians willingly ignore this?
Ephesians 4:17-24 talks about those who through the hardness of their hearts have excused themselves from the life of God and have given themselves over to a darkening of their understanding. It says that through this hardness of heart they’ve come to a place of being callous and through their callousness they’ve given themselves over to sensuality for the practice of every kind of impurity with greediness.
The life of God is to know God and His Son, Jesus Christ, according to John chapter 17. We know God and His Son, Jesus Christ, through the various Covenants contained in the Scriptures and through their application by prayer, fasting, thanksgiving, and every other detail that the Bible indicates is involved with inheriting the promises. Ephesians 2:12 mentions a series of Covenants in the plural that make up the New Covenant.
You can know the Lord in His Covenant of new birth for your own eternal spirit and be a stranger to the Covenant of promise that relates to your bodily healing or financial prosperity. In those particular Covenants that you’re not well versed in and firmly planted in – in those particular areas alone, you can be without hope and without God in the world. It’s not that you’d be disqualified from going to heaven when you’d die. But you’d simply live in an area of hell, as an orphan, in that area, (or areas,) that you’re ignorant of, while you’re still here on earth.
The Scriptures contain Covenants for our spirit, for our soul, for our body, for our finances, for our social life, and for the Creation around us that equally demand of us our eager participation for the blessings in each of those areas to be inherited.
Richard Ryder has a new edition of his book, "Animal Revolution: Changing Attitudes Towards Speciesism" that has a chapter in it that deals with Church history and shows a strong leaning towards the animal rights movement in Christianity until the coming of the "ministry" of Thomas Aquinas. And he documents with Aquinas the beginning of a disregard for animals in Christianity because Aquinas merged in his theology elements of the philosophy of Aristotle.
So, for the most part, we’re talking about a deeply ingrained 800-year-old tradition of blatant disregard for animals on the part of many Christian groups. But more and more Christians are being awakened to more accurate readings of Scripture. Those of us who have a regard for the life of animals are destined to become the majority in Christianity, so don’t lose hope!
52. Do you believe that Churches should be organized around this message?
I have mixed feelings about that, simply from the standpoint of attendance issues. I believe that all Church leaders should be made aware of it, and that when fully convinced of it’s reality in the Scriptures that they should prayerfully prepare a series of messages on it. And whether they preach them "live" to their congregations or simply prepare CDs and DVDs of this to make available in their bookstores is up to them, depending on their individual [local] knowledge of the hunger of their congregations for walking out the perfect will of God.
53. Isn’t this just cookie cutting of Scripture and construing it any way that you wish?
No it is not. There aren’t a lot of subjects in the Bible that pastors, teachers, and theologians don’t jump around the Bible regarding, because the Bible isn’t a collection of essays in the modern expectation of how thoughts would be systematically laid out in modern academic circles. There aren’t very many Messianic prophecy fulfillments in the New Testament that you can go to the Old Testament and see how those quotations were saying those precise things in the context of those Old Testament passages. Many of those are Holy Spirit inspired interpretations of the Old Testament.
I am Biblically addressing a subject that’s generally been ignored with the exception of crude generalizations based off of faulty readings of a couple of texts in Paul’s writings. On any other subject, absolutely no Christian in their right mind would allow such generalizations to be regarded dogmatically as expressing the Mind and Heart of God in the matter. And especially with it being an interpretation of Scripture that makes Him irreconcilably hard on any part of His Creation after the resurrection of Jesus Christ, when the sin and the curse have been resolved by Jesus’ conquest of death that He’s made each of us partakers and participants of.
54. My pastor says this is nonsense, should I leave my Church over it?
You should only leave your Church if your pastor becomes abusive about this subject. If it would never or seldom come up previously, but after finding out that you’re a vegan who believes this way and all of a sudden he/she has something abusive to say [on a regular basis] about animals and people who have compassion on animals… If your beliefs are repeatedly called demonic after they've found out that you believe this way, then find another Church. Begin to pray with humility and fasting for this Church that you’d be leaving that God would grant them the capacity to perceive and acknowledge the truth and to turn from their abusive ways.
No Church or ministry has the right to be abusive towards you over areas that they don’t understand when you’re clearly living a sanctified life and keeping the commandments of Jesus Christ. But if things are simply slightly uncomfortable or "not the same any more," then stay there and continue your fellowship with them in the areas that all of you do agree on and privately spend time fasting and praying for the Holy Spirit to lead them into all truth.
Don’t tell them that you’ll be fasting and praying for them. Simply do it on your own while you’re celebrating and practicing every truth that you do agree with them on, as well as all of the truths of the Word regarding this Covenant that you’re learning how to abide by and minister to Creation with. In the end, you have to listen to your own conscience in these matters.