Many Americans believe Gentiles have the freedom to eat both kosher and non-kosher meat because of the vision Peter saw of a sheet with all kinds of animals on it — the one from which God told Peter to rise and eat (Acts 10). I believe the laws of kashrut (dietary laws) as written in Leviticus are still valid today.
People often misinterpret visions because they use symbolism. In addition, believers often don’t consider how to properly apply various passages of Scripture today.
For example, are supposed to take our children up a mountain and sacrifice them as God commanded Abraham to do to Isaac too? Of course not!
Shall we take a map of America to the park and take our children’s toy soldiers and army tanks and prepare mock attacks on our land to show everyone how the Mexicans and Islamic terrorists are crossing the Mexican border because God is allowing it and our president isn’t going to do anything about it? God told Ezekiel to do something similar to this in Ezekiel 4, why shouldn’t we?
How about when God told Ezekiel to make a six-grain bread and bake it over human dung as fuel? Ezekiel objected like Peter did: “So I said, “Ah, Lord God! Indeed I have never defiled myself from my youth till now; I have never eaten what died of itself or was torn by beasts, nor has abominable flesh ever come into my mouth.” (NKJV) God compromised with Ezekiel and let him cook it over cow dung instead.
The point I’m trying to make is that Peter’s vision did not give us permission (freedom) to eat unclean food. When Peter saw this vision, he probably thought of Ezekiel’s response and eventually came to the right conclusion concerning the vision he received from the Lord. In other words, he knew he was expected to go to the Gentiles. Despite Peter’s interpretation, we insist on rejecting Peter’s conclusion because theologians tell us to. Peter wasn’t supposed to give in to the oral traditions created concerning the Gentiles and we shouldn’t give in to improper interpretations of the Scriptures. God assured Peter He had cleansed the Gentiles — not the meat. Peter didn’t need to fear that the Gentiles were going to transmit uncleanness to him as many had come to believe. In fact, God wanted Peter to go interact with the Gentiles and minister to them that they may know Jesus Christ. This is not much different from what happened with Ezekiel. God made it clear to Ezekiel that the children of Israel would be eating their defiled bread with the Gentiles in the near future.
You do not need to fear the dietary laws as they are presented in the Scriptures. God’s yoke is easy and His burden is light (Matt. 11:30). These words are not too hard for you so you can obey them (Deut. 30:11-14). It just takes a few changes or substitutions for Gentiles to eat kosher meat and avoid meat that is unclean. Freedom from uncleanness comes as we yield ourselves to the commands of the Lord.