TEXT: Genesis 3:1-6
1 Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden?
2 And the woman said unto the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden:
3 But of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die.
4 And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die:
5 For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.
6 And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat.
Robert Burton said, “Gluttony is the source of all our infirmities, and the fountain of all our diseases. As a lamp is choked by a superabundance of oil, a fire extinguished by excess of fuel, so is the natural health of the body destroyed by intemperate diet.”
According to a report this week by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “About 40 percent of all cancers in the United States are associated with excess weight. Carrying excess weight has been shown to boost the risk of 13 types of tumors, including cancers of the esophagus, thyroid, breast, gallbladder, stomach, liver, pancreas, kidney, ovaries, uterus, colon and rectum.”
This is an uncomfortable subject for many of us, but if you listen and take heed, this particular series can not only change your life spiritually, but it can save your life physically.
We have talked about how desire begins with “the lust of the eyes” and influences us toward gluttony in our lives. This “lust of the eyes” is what caused Eve to look on a tree that God had told her not to eat of and realize that its fruit was “pleasant to the eyes.” Another aspect of our first parents’ temptation that sheds light on the sin of gluttony is the dialogue between the serpent and the woman.
Satan, speaking through the serpent, is trying to get Eve to a point where he can say, “Ye shall not surely die.” In other words, “It’s not as bad as God told you it was.” The devil continues, “God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.” Basically, he is saying, “In fact, if you eat this forbidden fruit, there will be some benefits in it for you.” We don’t realize it, but some variation of this conversation happens in our heads whenever we buy food we know we should not buy.
We roll up in the McDonald’s drive-thru. We know we should go across the street and get a six-inch veggie sub on whole wheat bread. But, we tell ourselves, “One double-cheeseburger won’t hurt anything. I can handle one container of fries.” That’s the first part of the verbal battle already lost — telling ourselves it’s not as bad as we know it is. Then, we start making up benefits to justify our purchase of unhealthy food. “Waiting for a sub will take too long. If I get this now, I can get back to work faster.” “I haven’t had this in a while; it’ll be okay.” We talk ourselves into eating unhealthy foods all the time, not realizing that when we do so, we, like Eve, are arguing with the devil — and unless you use the Word of God as your weapon against him, you will always lose.
PRACTICAL STEP: In “The RAVE Diet and Lifestyle,” by Mike Anderson, we continue learning why we should cease eating refined foods. He writes, “Always use whole-wheat pastas or whole wheat breads because they keep their fiber on the way to the grocery store. Make sure the label says whole wheat, not wheat flour. With grain products, the first ingredient should always have the word ‘whole’ in it, sprouted wheat or organic rolled oats. Don’t let the words ‘hearty wheat,’ ‘stoned wheat,’ or ‘multigrain’ on the package fool you. This is just healthy-sounding advertising because these ingredients are made from refined white flour. And there is no difference between white flour and wheat flour. Wheat flour has some caramel coloring so it looks brown and sounds healthier, but it’s the same as white flour.”