[Update 10/24 3:54 pm: I'm removing my clarifications from the original update to this post and working the clarification into the text. See this post for why; there's a slight update to my thinking on this in that post as well.]
This post started as a response to the comments on Wink's Legislating Morality post, so if you haven't read that then you might want to glimpse at it for the context. I intend this to be a self-contained post, however, so that's not absolutely required reading. I predict right now that this post will get me in big trouble.
The issue at hand is what to make of Leviticus 18:22: "You shall not lie with a man as a man lies with a woman; it is an abomination." In the aforementioned comments thread, William mentioned this as a reason to think we should regard with utmost caution anything called an abomination. Very few things are called such a strong term. Rocky responded that eating shellfish is described by the same term. William replies that God and Peter dealt with the eating of shellfish, while no other abomination in scripture loses that status. I assume that's about Peter's vision sent to him for the purpose of accepting Gentiles into the gathering of new covenant believers, which wasn't really so much about the food as it was about what it symbolized. Jesus did declare all foods clean, however, so the point remains.
Jesus declared them clean, just as he declared clean the man with the skin condition, unclean by the Torah's standards. That must mean that whatever ritual significance they had was only temporary. It could be removed by divine fiat. After all, it was stipulated in the Torah by divine fiat. William is suggesting that when Jesus declares something clean it is clean, even if the Torah said otherwise, meaning the Torah had temporary jurisdiction over that item. Do other things declared unclean by the Torah remain unclean then if Jesus didn't declare them clean? Does it mean those things are inherently evil and not just ritually unclean? I say not necessarily, and one possibility that occurred to me sounds really weird but seems consistent with the entire biblical record, especially once you consider some biblical-theological themes across scripture.