Thursday, May 26, 2016

Ever Heard a Sermon Against Gluttony?

Have you ever heard a sermon on gluttony?  I haven't.  I have definitely heard plenty of preachers preach against homosexuality, perversion, adultery and pornography....but how come no one preaches against gluttonous people?

Maybe because there are too many of them sitting in the pews and leading their churches?  Maybe the pastor himself struggles with gluttony so certainly it would be embarrassing for him to preach on it, right?

If  a church would refuse to let an adulterer or a practicing homosexual serve as a leader or on staff....why would they allow a gluttonous person to serve on staff or be in leadership?

The Sin That's Eating Christians Alive

He's crafty. He's wily. He's a wolf in sheep's clothing. Many of us stop him when he comes at us with something we recognize as wrong like being tempted to pilfer funds no one will ever know are gone, go to a movie with that man or woman from the office who acts so much more interested in us than our spouse, drink and drive and hang out with folks who do. We can easily (I hope) say, "No!"

He's far more clever than to tempt us with the obvious. He's got his hand in something far more deadly than any of the things we ordinarily think of as sin, and yet it is one of the seven deadly sins. I am talking about the thing I've never heard even one pastor preach about or even talk about—gluttony, the sin that's eating Christians alive.

What Is Gluttony?

Several times the Bible mentions those who are gluttons and advises people not to associate with someone who is a glutton. The Weymouth New Testament translates one of the "acts of the flesh" listed in Galatians 5:19-21 as "riotous feasting," while the Wycliffe Bible calls it "immeasurable eatings." Others translate it as "orgies, wild parties, revelries" (Galatians 5:19-21, Weymouth New Testament, Wycliffe Bible, NIV, NLT, NKJV). These are all words for gluttonous behaviors.

The definition of a glutton is "one given habitually to greedy and voracious eating" (Webster's Dictionary online). Synonyms are overeater, hog and stuffer (Webster's Dictionary online). I will admit, this was my rebellion of choice. I saw it as the "sanctified sin" because I had never heard a pastor say it was wrong to eat until you were stuffed.

As a matter of fact, most joked from the pulpit about the upcoming church carry-in supper as one where everyone would have to wear expandable clothes. As a sugar and comfort food addict and glutton, that just justified my chosen rebellion.

I Wore My Rebellion

At 430 pounds, I wore my rebellion where all could see it. There was no hiding my sin. It was always with me, but then no one dared mention it to me lest I point out their third piece of pie.

Yet, my sin, like many others God steers us away from, was killing me, eating me alive. I thank God for a rude cardiac surgeon who bluntly told me I'd be dead in five years if I didn't lose at least 100 pounds and keep it off. That was a wake-up call. However, it took several more years and many more circumstances before I owned my addiction.

Acting Against My Addiction

As any addict knows, to recover I had to do a 180-degree turn-around. I had to give up those things I craved, the things that if I ate them, I couldn't stop. I had to face my emotional demons and recognize how they impacted my relationship with God.

I changed physically. To date I've lost 265 pounds. I changed emotionally. I fully embrace my emotions and learn from them and how to handle them. I changed spiritually. I accept the glorious grace, strength, mercy and mystery of who God is and how He works in my life.

I stay away from foods with sugar and flour or that combination. This is true any place I am, even when others are eating other things. I stay true to my commitment because I have made an obedience commitment to my God to want Him more than the things I crave.

In addition, I am aware people are watching me to see if I stay true to the journey God to which has called me. It is even more motivation to be obedient.

Hell of Food Addiction

I pray for divine encounters with people who suffered like I did for years because I know they want a way out of the hell of food addiction. Satan has gripped them by the stomach and won't let go. The way out is not easy, but it is possible when we submit totally to Him and desire to be transformed, changed from the inside out (Romans 12:2).

I have immeasurable compassion for those who are where I was. It's why I write books. When I was super morbidly obese, I wouldn't ask for help, but I would read a book. I just couldn't find one written by someone who had been where I was and had overcome.

It's why I speak and do radio and TV interviews. God has given me a platform. I use every opportunity to make the church aware that they must wake up to Satan's tactics before it is too late.


So we followers of Christ claim to abhor drug addicts, alcohol overuse, porn use, adultery, fornication and gay sex....but we give a big pass on food addiction?  How does that make sense?

"But Dennis, some people are born that way and they simply can't help eating so much because they are big boned and have slow metabolisms and they simply can't push themselves away from the table!"

Uh huh....and there we go again with the "I was born this way can't change!" argument.

If the Creator of the universe can make planets and stars and He also claims to know every hair on your head....I think he can also change the sinful addictions we may have been born with...including an addiction to food.

Proverbs 28:7
The one who keeps the law is a son with understanding, but a companion of gluttons shames his father.


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