Bible Question:

If Jesus had celebrated thanksgiving with us as a faithful Jew, would He have eaten turkey?

Bible Answer:

There are a number of foods that God allowed the Jewish people to eat. Today, the Jewish people call these kosher foods. The list of acceptable and unacceptable foods can be found in Leviticus 11:1-47 and Deuteronomy 14:1-21. Here is the introduction to Leviticus 11.

The LORD spoke again to Moses and to Aaron, saying to them, “Speak to the sons of Israel, saying, ‘These are the creatures which you may eat from all the animals that are on the earth. Leviticus 11:1-2   (NASB)

Here is a summary of the list of the foods the Israelites could and could not eat:

Mosaic Food Laws

God changed these laws in the New Testament after Jesus’ death and return to life, but the Jewish people do not accept this fact. We find the change in the book of Acts.

But Peter began speaking and proceeded to explain to them in orderly sequence, saying, “I was in the city of Joppa praying; and in a trance I saw a vision, a certain object coming down like a great sheet lowered by four corners from the sky; and it came right down to me, and when I had fixed my gaze upon it and was observing it I saw the four-footed animals of the earth and the wild beasts and the crawling creatures and the birds of the air. And I also heard a voice saying to me, ‘Arise, Peter; kill and eat.’ But I said, ‘By no means, Lord, for nothing unholy or unclean has ever entered my mouth.’ But a voice from heaven answered a second time, ‘What God has cleansed, no longer consider unholy.'” Acts 11:4-9  (NASB)

God no longer restricts what we can eat. However, that does not mean we should eat poisonous mushrooms! God does expect us to use common sense.


The list of acceptable and unacceptable foods from Leviticus 11:1-47 and Deuteronomy 14:1-21 reveal that Jesus could have eaten turkey on Thanksgiving day. This would have been true before and after Peter had his dream in Acts 11:4-9.

Suggested Links:

Is it a sin for a Christian to eat pig’s meat?
What Old Testament laws can we ignore?
You Are a Peter Too!