Junk Food and Gluttony
The Word of God is the life of our body: ďMan shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of GodĒ (Matt. 4.4). This substantiates the thought that Godís Word is able to support our body. Naturally speaking man must live by bread, but when the Word of God emits its power man can live by it too. Herein do we behold both the natural and the supernatural way of living. God does not say that henceforth we need not eat; He simply informs us that His Word can supply us with life which food cannot. When food fails to produce or to sustain the desirable effect in our body, His Word can give us what we need. Some live by bread alone, some by it and the Word of God. Bread sometimes fails, but Godís Word never changes.,
God hides His life in His Word. Inasmuch as He is life. so also is His Word. Should we view Godís Word as a teaching, creed or moral standard, it shall not prove very effective in us. No, Godís Word must be digested and united with us in the same manner as is food. Hungry believers take it in as their food. If they receive it with faith the Word becomes their life. God claims His Word is able to sustain our life. When natural nourishment fails we can believe God according to His Word. Then shall we perceive Him not only as life to our spirit but as life to our body as well. Christians nowadays experience great loss in not noticing how bountifully God has provided for our earthly tent. We confine Godís promises to the inner spirit and overlook their application to the outer flesh. But do we realize our physical requirement is no less needful than that of the spiritual? (The Spiritual Man, Vol. 3, Part 10 The Body, Ch. 4 God as Life of the Body, by Watchman Nee).
Isaiah 55:2 Why do you spend your money for that which is not bread, and your labor for that which does not satisfy? Hearken diligently to me, and eat what is good, and delight yourselves in fatness (let your soul delight in fatness, not your belly).
"Many argue that we should fulfill the legitimate desires and demands of the flesh, but the Apostle contends we owe nothing to it. Beyond preserving our earthly tents in a proper condition as Godís vessels, we owe the flesh nothing. Naturally the Bible never prohibits us from taking care of the body, else we would have to allot even more time and attention to it because of unnecessary sickness. Clothing, food and lodging are requisites; rest is also necessary. Nonetheless, what we stress is that our life should not be occupied solely by these concerns. True, we should eat when hungry, drink when thirsty, rest when weary, clothe ourselves when cold. Yet we must not permit these affairs to penetrate so deeply into our hearts that we make them partial or total objectives in our life. We must not love these necessaries. They should come and go according to need: they should not stay in us and become desires within. Sometimes for the sake of Godís work or some other overriding need, we must pommel our body and subdue it despite its own requirement. The Disciplesí love of sleep in the Garden of Gethsemane and the Lordís endurance of hunger by the well of Sychar present a contrasting picture of defeat and victory over the legitimate requirement of the body. Because we are debtors to the flesh no longer, we ought not sin according to its lusts nor slacken in spiritual work due to physical weakness. " (The Spiritual Man, CFP, Vol. 3, Part 10 The Body, Ch. 1 The Believer and His Body, 144-145, by Watchman Nee).
For 40 days and 40 nights the Lord did not go hungry, rather He fasts for that period of time. Do to excessive burden of the spirit is one is unable to eat. The spiritual conflict is so intense the body does not not feel the need for food even though he naturally should. Forty in Matt. 4.2 speaks of temptation (see v.3), whereas 42 represents tribulation (as in times, time and half). The Lord did not feel hungry while fasting, only after he fasted for 40 days and 40 nights. After the Lord was baptized by John (Matt. 3.13-17; Mark 1.9-11; Luke 3.21-22) receiving witness from God that He is the Son, He encounters not victory, but temptation - which is battle. And so it is for us also.
In the Garden of Eden it was a case of lusting for even more after being filled with the fruits of other trees. Here, however, it is a case of fasting for denial of legitimate need (Matt. 4.1-11). Junk food today is an extension of abusing legitimate need. If we can not gain victory in the matter of eating and drinking, how can we possibly overcome other things? If Satan can't gain ground in you in other ways, he will try your belly.
"Their end is destruction, their god is the belly, and they glory in their shame, with minds set on earthly things" (Phil. 3.19). "Do not be led away by diverse and strange teachings; for it is well that the heart be strengthened by grace, not by foods, which have not benefited their adherents" (Heb. 13.9).
Food is four nourishment, not for pleasure. He who serves only his belly does not buffet his body. And in that event God can do very little with him (see W.Nee's King and the Kingdom of Heaven, pp.30-31).
When you find yourself craving something that the world offers, quote Jesus' words to the Devil: "You must worship the Lord your God; serve only him" (Matt. 4.10, Deut. 6.13); "But he [Jesus] answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God" (Matt. 4.4); and "no compromise with evil" (Deut. 6.13). The Devil wants worship more than anything else; even through your belly. You are not worshipping God when giving into your cravings. A healthy person once said, "it not as important what you eat, but how much you eat," indicating that gluttony is a sin.
Solution, simply: focus on God's Son, and day by day He will work in you by the Holy Spirit to deliver you from gluttony. If you do not do this, then that explains why you are still addicted, since God has no problem overcoming such difficulties; yea, He doesn't even succumb to them in the first place. And it helps to realize Satan's approach in having gained a foothold in your past. First, he goes after your real needs, then creates possible doubts that produces an inappropriate desire. And to top it off, Satan will have you convince yourself you can do a certain thing anyway unwittingly rationalizing it to yourself. Hook, line and sinker!
The Sins of the Flesh
The Spiritual Man, CFP, 88-89 Watchman Nee
What the Apostle was experiencing in Romans 7 was a war against the sin which abides in the body. ďSin, finding opportunity in the commandment, deceived me . . . It was sin working death in me . . . sold under sin . . . but sin which dwells within meĒ (vv.11,13,14,17,20). While still in the flesh a believer often is overcome by the sin within him. Many are the battles and many, the sins committed.
The necessities of the human body may be classified into three categories: nourishment, reproduction, defense. Before manís fall these were legitimate requirements, unmixed with sin. Only after man fell into sin did these three become media for sin. In the case of nourishment, the world uses food to entice us. The first temptation of man is in this matter of food. As the fruit of the knowledge of good and evil enticed Eve, so drinking and feasting have become a sin of the flesh today. Let us not lightly regard this issue of food, for many fleshly Christians have stumbled on this point. The carnal believers at Corinth stumbled their brethren on just this matter of food. All who were therefore to be elders and deacons in those days were required to have overcome on this point (1 Tim. 3.3,8). Only the spiritual person appreciates the unprofitableness of devoting himself to eating and drinking. ďSo, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of GodĒ (1 Cor. 10.31).
Second, reproduction. Following the fall of man reproduction was changed into human lust. The Bible especially connects lust with the flesh. Even in the Edenic garden the sin of covetous eating immediately aroused lusts and shame. Paul puts these two together in his first letter to the Corinthians (6.13,15), and definitely relates drunkenness to unrighteousness (vv. 9-10).
Now as to defense. When sin has secured control, the body exhibits its strength in self-defense. It opposes anything which may interfere with its comfort and pleasure. What is commonly called temper and such of its fruits as anger and strife issue from the flesh and are therefore sins of the flesh. Because sin is the motivation behind self-defense, there has flowed forth directly and indirectly from it numerous transgressions. How many of the darkest sins in this world spring from self-interest, self-existence, self-glory, self-opinion, and whatsoever else there is of self.
An analysis of all the worldís sins will demonstrate how they each relate to these three categories. A carnal Christian is one who is dominated by one, two, or all three of these items. While it amazes no one for a worldling to be ruled by the sin of his body, it ought to be viewed as very abnormal should a born-again Christian remain long in the flesh, fail to subdue the power of sin and live a life of ups and downs. A believer ought to allow the Holy Spirit to examine his heart and enlighten him as to what is prohibited by the law of the Holy Spirit and the law of nature, as to what hinders him from gaining temperance and self-control, and as to what rules him and deprives him of liberty in his spirit to serve God freely. Unless these sins are taken away, he cannot enter richly into spiritual life.
Proverbs 23.29 Who has anguish? Who has sorrow? Who is always fighting? Who is always complaining? Who has unnecessary bruises? Who has bloodshot eyes? 30 It is the one who spends long hours in the taverns, trying out new drinks. 31 Don't let the sparkle and smooth taste of wine deceive you. 32 For in the end it bites like a poisonous serpent; it stings like a viper. 33 You will see hallucinations, and you will say crazy things. 34 You will stagger like a sailor tossed at sea, clinging to a swaying mast. 35 And you will say, "They hit me, but I didn't feel it. I didn't even know it when they beat me up. When will I wake up so I can have another drink?"
This is about drinking, but let's apply it also to eating junk food. Who has a belly from eating too much chocolate? Who is unheathily affected by the constant sugar rush? Don't let the milk in chocolate deceive you. For in the end it bites your belly like the stings of a serpent. You will always be staring at your belly, and not looking up to God. You say crazy things to have another chocolate fix today. You will barely be able to stand up you will have gotten so heavy. You will even say, numbing yourself, "I don't feel anymore" for the chocolate has padded me well. When can I have some more chocolate? Who cares about the next meal.
Don't lose yourself in chocolate; find yourself in God. Real relief comes from dealing with the cause of your anguish and sorrow and turning to God for peace. The soothing comfort of chocolate is so temporary it lasts only about 10 minutes, and the sugar rush after that lasts no more than a half an hour. Just as the writers in the OT were alerted to the dangers of wine, we should be alerted to the dangers of chocolate (or even fast food). It dulls the senses; it limits clear judgment (Prov. 31.1-9); it lowers the capacity for control (4.17); it destroys the person's efficiency (21.17). To continue to buy chocolate or to receive it freely from others who also suffer from it is an end in itself, a means of self-indulgence, or as an escape from life is to misuse it and invite the consequences of a drunkard.
Proverbs 23.1 When dining with a ruler, pay attention to what is put before you. 2 If you are a big eater, put a knife to your throat, 3 and don't desire all the delicacies-deception may be involved.
Be careful when eating with anyone of influence, for what they do may seem ok, but if you take the delicacies they offer on a daily basis, they will feel you owe them. All the while you are getting fatter and fatter. How demented is this? They will even attempt to bribe you.
For their sakes I sanctify myself, that they themselves also may be sanctified in truth. (John 17.19)
"The Lord sanctifying Himself" means that for the sake of His disciples the Lord refrained from doing many things which were perfectly legitimate to Him, from speaking many words which He might have lawfully spoken, from maintaining many attitudes which He would have justifiably had, from putting on many kinds of apparel which would have been proper for Him, and from taking many kinds of food which would have been normal to Him. He was willing to accept restraint lest He be misunderstood by the sinful thoughts of men. Being the Son of God who knew no sin, His freedom was far exceeded any we have on earth. One who is in authority represents God in his every word and action. As we see in Numbers 20.12 Moses failed to sanctify God in the eyes of the people of Israel and he did not sanctify himself before them. He misrepresented God, hence he could not enter Canaan. (Watchman Nee - Spiritual Authority, pp.179-181).
Proverbs 25.16 Do you like honey? Don't eat too much of it, or it will make you sick!
If you dare say "DUH!!!!" to this verse then why is it that you are so gluttonous, and in the next few hours from now, you are going to have some junk food or fast food, and overeat it also?
Diet Pepsi and Cake
"Pray no more for these people, Jeremiah. Do not weep or pray for them, and don't beg me to help them, for I will not listen to you. 17 Do you not see what they are doing throughout the towns of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem? 18 No wonder I am so angry! Watch how the children gather wood and the fathers build sacrificial fires. See how the women knead dough and make cakes to offer to the Queen of Heaven*. And they give drink offerings to their other idol gods! 19 Am I the one they are hurting?" asks the Lord. "Most of all, they hurt themselves, to their own shame."
"Then the people will say, `Why should we wait here to die? Come, let's go to the fortified cities to die there. For the LORD our God has decreed our destruction and has given us a cup of poison to drink because we sinned against the LORD. We hoped for peace, but no peace came. We hoped for a time of healing, but found only terror. (Jeremiah 8.14-15).
*The Queen of Heaven was a name for Ishtar, the Mesopotamian goddess of love and fertility. After the fall of Jerusalem, the refugees from Judah who fled to Egypt continued to worship her (44.17). A papyrus dating from the 5th century B.C., found at Hermopolis in Egypt, mentions the Queen of Heaven among the gods honored by the Jewish community living there.