Monday, November 21, 2011

Do you like your "Butterball" Turkey? Know the facts, for the "Halal" of it.

I'm a Canadian, but I'm down in the U.S. this week for a bit. I am addicted to the part of my family that lives here. I love the way they celebrate Thanksgiving and besides, I get a chance at more turkey.

Sometimes, it's even a "Butterball" one. Yeah, or so I thought until I read the article in the link below. It turns out that every Butterball turkey sold in the U.S. at least is guaranteed to be slaughtered in the "Halal" Muslim fashion. You can get the details of what that entails in the article. But suffice it to say, while the 'butcher' is slaughtering it, he (I don't think they allow she's to do it) is yelling, "in the name of Allah the greatest".

Does that change the taste of the turkey? Probably not. Does the turkey take on some sort of mystic or even religious Islamic powers? Probably not. Am I, as a Christian, sinning if I eat it by accident or at the home of my host when there is no option? I don't know. Probably not.

However, I do have to deal with the verse in the Bible that says, in I Corinthians 10:28 (NASB), " - 1Cr 10:28 -But if anyone says to you, 'This is meat sacrificed to idols, do not eat it. . . "   So, in our 'Butterball' turkey example, I have to ask myself, "When a butcher holds the bird up as he is slaughtering it and says, "I slaughter you in the name of Allah the greatest" is he "sacrificing it to Allah" (which by the way is not, in my opinion, at all the same as the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob)?  If so, then by all means I should not be eating it.   If not, then I see no problem.

My wife raised an interesting point on this topic.  What if the butcher is not a Muslim, but he is saying what he has to say in order to keep his job and allow the company to be able to declare the bird was slaughtered in the Halal fashion?  Not sure if that's the case, but if it were, does it alter anything as far as whether or not I should it eat it?

Okay, so what are my choices?

First, avoid eating a Butterball turkey (they're not that healthy for you anyway).  Second, declare the declaration of the butcher as not being equivalent to "offering it as a sacrifice to an idol".  Third, insist the producer of 'Butterball' turkeys to butcher some in the non-Halal manner and sell them as such.  Fourth, decide that Paul was not writing to you, but to the Corinthians.  (Not sure this last one will fly at all.)  Fifth, eat it and ask for forgiveness in the event it is sin.

Whatever you do, read the article.   Then decide for yourself.  Sooner or later, as a Christian, you're going to need to deal with Paul's instruction to the Corinthians.   Anyway, remember that Thanksgiving is a day of giving thanks to Jehovah God who created the turkey for our good pleasure, not Allah.

Articles: Happy Halal Thanksgiving

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