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In my readings and Bible studies, I have seen that there is mention of certain items of food that were to be included in the Passover meal. In particular, I am wondering about 'bitter herbs'. Do you know, or does the Bible clarify, what these herbs were? And why would they be included in the meal? Did 'bitter herbs' have something to do with being a type of medicine?

Also, I am wondering about this. The bitter herbs were present in the Passover meal, before Jesus, so this food would have been included during the last Passover meal that Jesus ate. Would the herbs have been beneficial to Him, just before being whipped, and beaten?

The reason I ask has to do with my own diet. In addition to other physical problems, etc, I also am having trouble with food. Items I used to be able to eat with gusto and joy, now are tearing me up. I am having to monitor daily what I can eat, and what does not work today, when it did yesterday.

Also, this inquiry includes any information you may have concerning what I like to call 'medicine food'.

When I was young, a kid, and young adult, I did not eat certain things, like onion. As I grew older, I developed a taste for onion, but in the last few years, I have noticed that certain things are happening. When I eat onion, usually raw, it seems to make me feel better. I do not seem to get colds or flu as often as others, and when I do feel something of this sort coming on, I include onion in my diet, and it just seems like the cold or flu are not as bad, or even just last a short time. As a result of watching and recording what this food does for me, I have come to call it a 'medicine food', for me at least.

Would this type of situation be related to foods that God gave us to eat? I guess what I am asking is, did God specify to the people during the Old Testament times, any kind of certain food that is for a medicine, or to guard against illness?

In the New Testament, it does talk about wine being used as medicine, and I believe you covered this in one of your articles. If this also relates to my queston, how so?


We don't know exactly what herbs were used for the Passover, other than that God specified that they were to be bitter in taste. Likely it was to reminded the Jews of their bitter times while slaves in Egypt (Exodus 1:14; Deuteronomy 16:3). The Bible mentions no other properties to these herbs and to suppose anything more is merely speculation and going beyond what God revealed.

There are medicinal plants, plant products, and practices mentioned in the Bible. See Medicinal Products in the Topical Scripture Index. However, God did not require or specify certain foods to be in the Israelite diet to guard against illness.


See also:

Questions and Answers regarding Medical Practices