Saturday, January 16, 2016

A short discussion about "gluttony"

Many people today who are living lavish or selfish lifestyles where they “over-do” many things, don’t realize that Scripture teaches moderation in everything.  In short, “gluttony” is a sin!  The dictionary defines gluttony as “the act or habit of eating or drinking too much”; but it also includes excessive indulgence such as greed and coveting and “hoarding”… 

We are often quick to label certain things a “sin” (i.e., smoking and drinking), but for some reason “gluttony” is basically tolerated or totally ignored.   When you think about it, many of the arguments used against smoking and drinking (such as health and addiction) apply equally to overeating or anything else we do to excess.  For instance, many believers would never even consider drinking alcohol or smoking a cigarette; but yet they have absolutely no qualms about gorging themselves at the dinner table.  Scripture warns us against these behaviors:

Proverbs 23:20 Don't be one of those who guzzle wine or of those who eat meat to excess,  21 for both drunkard and glutton will become poor - drowsiness will clothe them with rags. (CJB)

Proverbs 28:7 A wise son observes Torah, but a friend of those lacking restraint shames his father.  8 He who increases his wealth by charging exorbitant interest amasses it for someone who will bestow it on the poor. 9 If a person will not listen to Torah, even his prayer is an abomination.  (CJB)

Proverbs 23:2 If you have a big appetite, put a knife to your throat! 3 Don't be greedy for his delicacies, for they are deceptive food. 4 Don't exhaust yourself in pursuit of wealth; be smart enough to desist. 5 If you make your eyes rush at it, it's no longer there! For wealth will surely grow wings, like an eagle flying off to the sky. (CJB)

Here’s something every believer should ponder:  If we are unable to control our eating habits, chances are, we are also unable to control other habits, such as those of the mind -  greed, coveting, lust, anger, etc.  The probability is also great that we are unable to keep our mouths from gossip or strife....

Scripture tells us that we are not to allow our appetites to control us; rather it should be the other way around: we are to control our appetites. (See Deuteronomy 21:20, Proverbs 23:2, 2 Peter 1:5-7, 2 Timothy 3:1-9, and 2 Corinthians 10:5.) Self-control, the ability to say “no” to anything in excess, is one of the fruits of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22)!

YHWH has blessed us with everything we need – physically, mentally, or spiritually.  We must honor His creation by tempering ourselves while enjoying the bounties He has provided.  

1 Corinthians 6:9. Or don’t you know, that the unrighteous will not inherit the Kingdom of Elohim?[1] Make no mistake! Neither sexual sinners, nor idol-worshippers, nor adulterers, nor the corrupt, nor men who lay down with other men,  10. Nor the oppressors, nor thieves, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, will inherit the Kingdom of Elohim.  11. And these things have been in some of you: but you are washed, and are sanctified, and made righteous, in the name of our Master Y’shua the Mashiyach, and by the Spirit of our Elohim.  12. Everything is in my power: but everything is not profitable to me. Everything is in my power; but none (of them) will have dominion over me.  13. Food is for the belly; and the belly is for food; but Elohim will bring them both to nothing. But the body is not for illicit sex, but for our Master (Y’shua); and our Master (Y’shua) for the body.  14. And Elohim has raised up our Master; and he will raise us up, by his power.  15. Don’t you know that your bodies are the members of the Mashiyach? Will one take a member of the Mashiyach, and make it the member of a harlot?  May it never be! (AENT)

FOOTNOTE:  Compare this to Matthew 5:17-20, where we are told that breaking the least commandment of Torah and teaching others to do the same makes a person “least in the kingdom” but they still get in.  Y’shua implies that those with more serious sins won’t make it in: “Depart from me, workers of iniquity, I never knew you”; but here, Rav Shaul gives a more specific list of what will keep them out.

2 Corinthians 3:16. But when any of them is turned to Master YHWH, the veil is taken from him.[1]  17. Now Master YHWH Himself is the Spirit. And where the Spirit of Master YHWH is, there is freedom.  18. And we all, with uncovered faces, behold as in a mirror the glory of Master YHWH; and are transformed into the same likeness, from glory to glory, as by Master YHWH the Spirit. (AENT)

FOOTNOTE:  The reading of Torah does not blind, nor does the reading of the “Renewed Covenant” bring Grace: but in each, one must “turn to Master YHWH with their hearts” to remove the veil.  MarYah/YHWH is used here, rather than Y’shua.  Rather than people turning to Y’shua as the deciding factor, the point is that both Jews and Gentiles must be truthful, and not just use prayers or Scripture readings as some sort of magical incantation, but to turn their hearts to YHWH.  In many places Y’shua teaches that he came to bring Glory to the Father, and to turn hearts unto YHWH.

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