The Bible doesn’t contain many recipes; it’s more concerned with telling people what not to eat than prescribing specific things they should. However, it does have one interesting scene in which God instructs the prophet Ezekiel to make a particular kind of bread:

And you, take wheat and barley, beans and lentils, millet and spelt; put them into one vessel, and make bread for yourself. During the number of days that you lie on your side, three hundred ninety days, you shall eat it. The food that you eat shall be twenty shekels a day by weight; at fixed times you shall eat it. And you shall drink water by measure, one-sixth of a hin; at fixed times you shall drink. You shall eat it as a barley-cake, baking it in their sight on human dung. (Ezek. 4:9-12)

In the context of the whole Book of Ezekiel, the recipe is not put forward as a delightful whole-grain alternative to processed foods, but as a sign of God’s coming punishment of the people. The message was something like, “If you all don’t repent, then this is the kind of survivalist garbage you will be reduced to eating during the coming siege!”

Cow dung not included.

Cow dung not included. (screen shot)

But that hasn’t stopped some modern people from treating this recipe as a sign of the healthy, nutritious fare God would have for us today. The Food for Life company produces and markets several versions of Ezekiel 4:9 bread, including variations with sesame, flax, and—I kid you not—cinnamon-raisin.

Although the company has mostly adhered to the letter of the law in terms of ingredients, one hopes that its method of preparation has been modernized from Ezekiel’s, who was instructed to bake his bread in human excrement. When Ezekiel protested about the unhygienic source material of his meals, God relented a little, allowing him to use cow dung instead (Ezek. 4:15). So when Food for Life’s website encourages consumers to “try [the bread] served warm to release its exceptionally rich nutty flavor,” I just don’t think so.

 

This post is an excerpt from the forthcoming book The Twible: All the Chapters of the Bible in 140 Characters or Less . . . Now with 68% more humor! The book will be available in November.

14 Comments

  1. Food for Life has been making Ezekiel Bread for decades. It is kind of pricey, but has a definite following.

    It can probably be found in the health food section of your supermarket, or at the local health food store. Sadly, I have only seen it available in a frozen state.

  2. It is actually very good bread. The only thing is it spoils easily so you need to keep it in the refrigerator. I am not one of those health nuts; I just eat it because it tastes good. My favorite is the raisin bread.

  3. It appears you find anything to find humor in which I can appreciate; however, you’re logic is less than stellar far too many times. I got bit by a tick a few years ago which resulted in Lyme Disease. Did I blame God? Hell no. DId I pay to get help? Yes. Did people help? Well, certainly they got paid to do their part and fill my head with dogma and shit. I finally shut down, and made this disease between me and God since other people in your words were failing sainthood. Instead of compassion, I got a lot of judgments. Back to health, you see, the word is wisdom is full of the things God has prepared for humans to eat, whether believers or not. When people fail to follows the laws of nutrition, our bodies are tested and challenged in varying degrees. Simply put, I found many answers to healing my body physically from Lyme Disease. This included God. However, God didn’t tell me which modern regime I ought to try. Rather, I studied the pros and cons of various traditional arts forms of food. As a modern, convenient seeking society, people are dying from their own lack of knowledge, wisdom, and intuitive to feel with their bodies. Each of our bodies are subject to various elements. No two people look alike. Yet, real food can be our answers to healing and feeling the strength within. I choose to believe in something bigger than myself, a God. Yet, many who choose not to still reap the benefits of health and nutrition because they follows the laws of health. May I suggest a book called Deep Nutrition. I could say a lot more; however, I will say why don’t you try alternative methods before you’re so willing to mock and find humor in some people’s marketing skills. Soaking and sprouting grains is indeed much easier for our bodies to absorb the nutrition from varying grains and seeds. When not practiced, our bodies are stripped literally due to the phyctate acids that protect the grains from predators in nature. But hey, what the hell would I know?

  4. By the way, the bread does have to remain frozen or left in the refrigerator once opened and used promptly due to the nature of preservatives not being used. It’s rather tasteful, especially with butter. And to those who think it’s garbage, I’m sure you are happy with your choices of foods. You are certainly what you eat. If you have failing health challenges and problems, be sure to blame yourself for your own ignorance. No offense, but I suppose being ignorant isn’t blissful after all when your body is plagued with something you don’t want.

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