Should Christians do their Best to Eat Only Organic Foods?

by Blue Stone GraphicsI took an introductory level cooking class a few days ago at our local university. The course’s two teachers made a big deal about organic food. Everything we touched for the soup we were making was organic. They even went so far as to leave out certain items because they couldn’t find suitable organic alternatives at the store.

I must admit that I found their organic zeal amusing… until we started handling the food: everything smelled, felt, looked and tasted noticeably better.

Until then, I hadn’t thought much about organic foods, apart from appreciating them as a personal choice and a more expensive supermarket option. After reflecting on my experience in the class, I’m ready to admit that it’s more complicated than simple preference.

For Christians, food choice takes into consideration three large areas of stewardship: health, finances, and creation. The first two are relatively straightforward. The third is muddier.

Just what does it mean to be good stewards of creation when buying food? Does that mean I should only eat organic sustainable food? Does it really matter if we use pesticides when growing? Does the Bible give us any direction in this area?

What do you think: should Christians do their best to eat only organic foods?

Share your thoughts!

Photo by flickr user Blue Stone Graphics.

26 Responses to “Should Christians do their Best to Eat Only Organic Foods?”

  • Jenny says:

    I think we should at least concider it, yes. I purchase (almost always) organics for all of my family’s staple foods (ie) rice, flour, lentils, oats, potatoes, onions… misc.vegetables etc.). For my children, I try and have their entire diet consist of organic foods. I feel it’s not only wise stewardship of His creation but of our bodies. I realize it’s costly and I might not ‘sing this tune’ so confidently were I in dire straights, however, I feel I’d still try for my children.

  • Graham says:

    Yes, probably.
    May I suggest that one way to understand “Organic” is to view its as follows.
    Its not whats in it, its what isn’t.
    Lets say you grow your own vegetables and fruit and a few chicken.
    Having spent a season trying your best and proudly taking the produce home to eat, all fresh.
    You then spray it with 100 man made sprays, pesticides, GM altered crop enhancers, etc, etc…. doesn’t make a lot of sense does it?
    I’m not sure the Good Lord intended us to grow ears on mice, or add cod genes to corn, did He?
    I didn’t understand organic until I realised that was how my grand parents farmed in 1900, before all the chemicals were introduced. Then I realised it wasn’t just a fad but common sense.

  • Teek says:

    Matthew 15:11 What goes into a man’s mouth does not make him ‘unclean,’ but what comes out of his mouth, that is what makes him ‘unclean.'”

  • Shirley Sanford says:

    I agree with Teek. I think we should do our best to eat healthy foods, but we don’t have to try to eat only organic. Not all processed organic food is healthy because it contains too much salt and sugar. We need to be aware of the marketing schemes that promote organic foods. Some Christians can not afford to eat organic foods because they are more expensive. Thinking that all Christians should eat only organic foods is legalism.

  • Jason says:

    My wife is a nutrionist/dietician by degree and has done years of study into the area of natural and organic food. She has some really great thoughts on this topic (ones I respect greatly). I believe the example that Christ lays out in the bible of coming to fulfill the law but not do away with it plays counter balance to the passage of scripture that says that “all things are acceptable, but not necessarily expedient”. That being said the old testament has some great wisdom in what we should and shouldn’t eat, or rather what is better for us according to God’s wisdom. While it may no longer a sin, as it was for Jewish people, to eat certain foods, I do think following there example is healthier over all. Right along with this I believe is eating food closer to the way God made them. We have done so for years with getting Raw milk from local dairies, grass fed organic beef, and attempting to buy organic whenever possible and honestly I have seen the benefit to my wife and child first hand. Good article :)

  • Edgar B. Land says:

    organic food might be better. However unless it is from a family farm you never know if it really organic.

  • Jess says:

    I suppose I thought instead of friends who are just glad to get fresh food because it is expensive and at times their tables are not loaded with food. Thankfully, we are not under the law anymore.

  • Regina says:

    I believe that it is beneficial, and if is an viable option to eat organic, then yes it is good stewardship. Especially in place of eating processed foods. On the other hand, if you can not afford the price of organic foods and your budget mandates that you eat less nourishing foods because it is what you can afford, I do not see this as a sin. It is not what you put in to your mouth that defiles your body but what comes out of it that makes it unclean. This is not a burden that should be put on believers but as a steward it is good to be wise.

  • Ruth Bard says:

    Don’t we have rather more important things to be concerned about? Like feeding hungry kids?

    • Marsha says:

      Yes, Ruth, feeding hungry children is very important. But, we don’t want to give them poison, do we? Right now, with the European market refusing GMOs, “we” (the USA and Monsanto) are trying to pawn them off on 3rd world countries. The pesticides that have now been outlawed in the USA for years, are still manufactured and sold to 3rd world countries.

      This is not a simple topic. If the choice has to be between feeding a hungry child toxic food today (so they don’t starve to death, but they will die a slower death of disease caused by those toxins) or not feeding them anything at all… I don’t have the answer. The only answer I have is for companies (and the people who support them by buying their products) to stop producing those toxins.

      “More important things”? That statement kind of sounds like one is thinking we can only be concerned about one thing at a time.

      I don’t believe in legalism, but I do believe we should all do “the best we can do” – that being more for some than others. And I certainly believe we could all be doing better. : )

  • I believe that eating healthy generally is what God wants for all of his children. If you can affored to eat organic,go for it,but if you can’t,simly eat as healthy as you can afford to …period!

  • Rúben says:

    I Cortinthians 10:31, says: “So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God”.

    And we also should consider I Corinthians 3:16 e 17: “Don’t you know that you yourselves are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit lives in you? If anyone destroys God’s temple, God will destroy him; for God’s temple is sacred, and you are that temple”.

  • Pat says:

    If you take a moment and think about what we eat and what’s available now vs. 15-20 years ago and about the health issues now vs. 15-20 years, that alone should make you think about not eating the things that are “ready”, “packaged” and convenient. I have found that making something as simple as cornbread doesnt that much more time then opening a pre-packaged box and it tastes so much better to me. Just an example. We should be thinking about the temples we are supposed to be as examples of good health. I find it hard to listen to someone sickly talking about the goodness of God when their health due to their bad eating habits doesn’t reflex any goodness :-)

  • Megan says:

    To me, how we eat directly impacts creation, and should therefore be carefully considered. The Bible may not directly address organic foods, but I believe it does give some fairly clear guidelines: Gen. 1:27 designates PLANTS for food. Now, after the curse in Gen. 3, people eat meat, but that doesn’t mean it was condoned. Also, eating animals after “the fall” is relative for two reasons: 1) it was after THE FALL…the fall was not a good thing, so why should what happened a result be considered a good thing and 2) Jesus came to reverse the fall, become sin and taste death for all of us…the effects of the fall are thoroughly cancelled with the cross. What was in the beginning – us being at least vegetarians (and probably Vegans) – is alluded to in the prophecy of Isaiah. Chapter 11 is all about the “peaceable Kingdom”, and it’s pretty hard to achieve such a kingdom (specifically what is talked about in 11:6-8) if we’re cruelly murdering and abusing animals for our own consumption. Plus, it’s just not that good for you (see, for just one example:, and we are all called to steward the earth (humanity’s first job) and creation, starting with the part for which we are most directly responsible – our own bodies!

  • Bettyj says:

    Everything that the Lord made is good. We should eat nothing in excess and eat excess in nothing, being as wise as serpents, thus enjoying everything that was made.

  • Andrew says:

    Which is more important, though: being good stewards of our bodies, or being good stewards of God’s creation? If they only grew organic food, farmers would not be able to produce nearly enough to keep up with the nutritional demands of humans. Organic food, especially livestock, takes much more room, maintenance, and energy to grow than food treated with chemicals/pesticides. Is it justifiable to expend more of God’s resources in order to keep our bodies “healthier”?

  • laura says:

    I’ve only been studying the bible for about a year,but, Jesus did say “It’s not what goes into your mouth that is unclean, but what comes out” (Mt 15:11). And let’s not forget Romans 14:14. Many Christians I believe forget we’re not living under the law, but under grace, the cleansing blood of our wonderful Savior Jesus Christ.I just think instead of wasting our time on silly things like food, we should be out looking for the people God puts in front of us to give the beautiful message of the gospel.

  • Buck says:

    I found it fun reading the different responses for a pretty good question that I’m sure many Christians ponder. After all, our bodies are the temple of the Lord and who doesn’t want to be healthy? Just on a practical standpoint it makes sense to the believer and nonbeliever to watch what they eat because it does affect you. So, I suppose that if a person believes eating only organic foods helps in their walk with Christ, then by all mean s they should do it. And visa versa for those who don’t, it’s not a Christian requirement.

  • Katina says:

    But the Lord did not make pesticide. Man did. And I believe that satan is out to steal kill and destroy all man kind. Therefore look at the rise in illness and disease just in the past 20 years. It’s not normal to eat chemicals our bodies do not recognize, plus these chemicals alter our genetics, that definately was not Gaod’s will. Pesticide is equivelant to rat poison that’s not normal. Also Read up on Sweet n Low and Equal they created it by mistake while trying to create a new pesticide. We need to wake up and truly be wise as the serpent, which means think like him to defeat him. Not do as he does.

    Eating Organic is not always expensive. Visit your local farmers market to get the best deals. Remember grocery stores have to pay employees while farmers markets do not have the expense a grocery store has. ALso remember the wide path is the path to destruction not all of us will find the narrow path to life and truth. Do not do as the world does or as they tell you to do, be wise and stick to how God created all things natural. Man is always trying to make things better by enhancing food superficially, but who knows best Man or God. Isaiah 30 and 31. The world will decieve us and we are not from this world. YHWH (God) Bless you all.

  • Pearlnita says:

    I truly believe that our bodies were design to eat as the word instructs us too. I think most sickness and diseases are from the foods we eat. I believe that organic is very healthy. Most obese people who experience high blood pressure and diabetes usually are able to control it by changing their diet, organic or not, and they no longer have to take all the medicines they were prescribed. I went complete organic for a year, I was able to control my weight and I felt better. During my purchasing I spent just as much for organic as I did shopping non-organic. I believe it is about the word and its about being healthy. We were given abundant life. Lets be about life and living and take care of ourselves. If you can go organic, that’s great, but for those who can’t just try to change your diet as much as possible so you can be healthy and oh yea, fast and pray. Remember God loves us not because of but in spite of.

  • camille says:

    definitely, organic means we’re eating foods the way God made them and not after man’s tampered with them. I truly believe we’d see an amazing health turn around in America if we’d just go back to growing and eating the foods the way our ancestors did. As Christians we should want to be doing all we can to feel our best and have the health to be able to do what God wants us to do. And that begins with what we eat!

  • Starting a green non profit business in colorado. Mission is to GROW MORE LOCAL FOOD IN COLORADO. The vehicle for growing more local organic food is community gardens and farms starting and multiplying exponentially. We must grow clean local food year round. Vehicle for this is greenhouse growing. As Genesis 1:26 tells us that we have dominion in the earth – how are the children of God is command and charge of the food supply ? Good question huh…

  • Audrey says:

    Consider, many of the pesticides and genetic engineering not only harms the food we eat, and thereby our own bodies…it also harms the people who live in those areas where the crops are grown, and the workers who tend the crops and animals. By buying these products, we are saying “Yes, keep making these…we want more” creating a market that hurts people, especially the poor.

    Jesus said, “Do unto others as you would have them do to you.” (Luke 6:31) So I ask, If you were a poor banana farmer, living in Guatemalla, would you want pesticides in your land, in your water supply? If you were a poor chicken farmer in Kentucky, would you want to work around so many antibiotics that you have a resistance to all antibiotic medicines and your health is at risk?

    I would want to be able to make an honest living growing a crop in a way that doesn’t compromise my health, my community, or my conscience.

    If one cannot concede that we need to protect our environment from such maltreatment, certainly we can agree we should protect our neighbors.

    Jesus said, “Love your neighbor as yourself.”

  • David Morton says:

    I have no real issue eating vegetables that are sprayed with insecticides or even genetically modified. Some technology in my food is fine. What I have an issue with is the fact that many of these growers of food inhumanely treat the animals whose short lives are ultimately given in service to man. I believe that organic meat answers the question, “should we respect the animal whose blood provides life?”. I think the answer, as a Christian, should always be yes. If nothing else, this lifestyle, if one can afford it, is one way to set ourselves apart as holy to the lord. This is never a bad thing. I find it irritating that those who seem to have the highest view of humane animal treatment also seem to be diametrically opposed to Christianity in it’s whole, while Christians don’t seem to care at all. Something is wrong.