Some folks know I’m kosher, and have asked me about that—as well as whether it’s appropriate for us Christians to be kosher, seeing as “Jesus declared all foods clean.” Others wonder whether they should switch to a kosher diet for the purpose of fasting, including during Lent. So I figure now’s as good a time as any to discuss it.
In Leviticus 11 and Deuteronomy 14, the LORD gave the Hebrews instructions (called kashrút) as to which animals they were allowed to eat, and which animals they weren’t. Pharisees and rabbis have since added on to the customs. In general, what you can eat is called clean, and what you can’t is called unclean. Or, if you’e gonna use the words English has borrowed from Yiddish, kosher (Hebrew, kashér/“straight”) and treyf (Hebrew, trefá/“prey”).