Did Peter's Vision of the Sheet Mean People & Food?
04-29-2011, 09:09 AM
RE: Did Peter's Vision of the Sheet Mean People & Food?
This comment is in response to Rose of Shushan's comment to Ne'eryah:
"What road would that be? You don't seem to want to answer my question about what did God refer to when He told Peter to kill and eat? If it wasn't food what was it then since you keep saying it wasn't food but won't tell me what you think it is.If you want me to search for the answer somewhere else then that leaves us with the question of what did the kill and eat refer to?"
Metaphorical language is common in prophecy and dream visions. An example that is pretty similar to this is that which we read in the book of Zechariah 3:
1 And he shewed me Joshua the high priest standing before the angel of the LORD, and Satan standing at his right hand to resist him.
2 And the LORD said unto Satan, The LORD rebuke thee, O Satan; even the LORD that hath chosen Jerusalem rebuke thee: [is] not this a brand plucked out of the fire?
3 Now Joshua was clothed with filthy garments, and stood before the angel.
4 And he answered and spake unto those that stood before him, saying, Take away the filthy garments from him. And unto him he said, Behold, I have caused thine iniquity to pass from thee, and I will clothe thee with change of raiment.
5 And I said, Let them set a fair mitre upon his head. So they set a fair mitre upon his head, and clothed him with garments. And the angel of the LORD stood by.
My question is, is the vision meaning to refer to change his garments, or to the removal of his iniquity? Are we to say that his iniquity is that he is wearing filthy garments, literally, or that his filthy garments are a symbol of his iniquity?
I understand that it says 'they changed his garments'; but remember that it is a vision, and how does the vision interpret the clothes?
A bit different, but the same concept, are other prophecies in Zechariah 4 about the two olive branches, Jeremiah 1 about the almond tree, the seething pot...also in the book of revelation 1 [of many places] the seven candlesticks, the seven stars, the two edged sword coming out of his mouth, etc...
When it comes to visions and parables we have to be careful in taking everything literally. Yes, there are times where a person is told to do a literal act with a physical object, that is meant symbolically. For example when Jeremiah takes the girdle, wears it a bit, buries it in the ground, and removes it after many days...or Isaiah walking naked, or Ezekiel laying on his side x number of days, Hoshea marrying an reformed prostitute, etc.
Therefore, in Peter's vision, I believe we need to let Peter interpret it himself...at first he is confused, and thinks it refers to food, "Lord, I have never eat anything common or unclean"...but later, he comes back with the realization of the meaning of the dream [not by saying, Ah, we can eat pork, but rather] "Now I know that God is not an accepter of persons, but in every nation he who does righteousness is accepted with him."
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