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  • Writer's pictureAlan Fong

A Man Given to Appetite

Today’s Verse:

When thou sittest to eat with a ruler, consider diligently what is before thee: And put a knife to thy throat, if thou be a man given to appetite. ~Proverbs 23:1-2


Do you enjoy eating food? I do! I am not a picky eater and enjoy most varieties of food. When I am invited to someone’s house as a guest to eat, or when I have been entertained in a foreign country to eat, I might be served food I do not recognize. I will politely ask my host what that food is. I want to be careful of how it is prepared and if it is a food that I can eat and not have any after effects. I am careful to control my appetite or watch what I eat. This morning we want to consider our appetite and watch what we eat.

There is the respect of our desires.

We are created by God with many faceted desires. Desires in and of themselves are not evil. Everyone should desire to eat and drink. The majority of men and women should desire to marry and rejoice in the gift of marriage. Married women should desire to have children. Everyone should desire to succeed. However, we must be aware of the fact that our desires can become excessive and indulgent. Our desires can become insatiable and turn into lust and evil concupiscence. We can be controlled by our desires instead of us controlling our desires. “When thou sittest to eat with a ruler” reminds us that we will be tempted in our desires. It reminds us that there is a sin that wants to rule over us if we succumb to our desires.

There is the reflection concerning our desires.

“Consider diligently what is before thee.” What good counsel! Whatever it is that is set before us seeks to control us. We better think cautiously before we give in to our desires. Think about what uncontrolled lust can do to your purity and to your marriage. Think about what compromise will do to your values and your testimony. Think about what worldliness will do to staying in the will of God. Think of what looking at that wicked television program and internet site will do to your thinking. Think of what your excessive drive to succeed might do to your contemplation of cheating, cutting corners, or misrepresentation and its impact on your testimony. We must consider diligently what has been placed before us. Is it an opportunity or an obstacle? Is it a stepping stone or a stumbling block? Will it lead to sin or to sanctification? Think!

There is the restraint concerning our desires.

“And put a knife to thy throat, if thou be a man given to appetite.” First, be honest with yourself and God and realize that you have desires that could go astray. Second, safeguard your life by putting a knife to your throat. That is a powerful symbol of restraining or nullifying your uncontrolled desires. A knife to the throat is symbolic of a threat on your life. Uncontrolled desires threaten your testimony, marriage, and others around you. The best knife to use against our desires is the Word of God. When Jesus was tempted by Satan in the wilderness, He was tempted in the areas of appetite, avarice, and ambition. Jesus successfully overcame these areas of temptation both in the Spirit and with the Word of God. “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.” The best means for restraining our desires is to replace them with the right desires. When we desire God above life, we have found the one means that can deal with desires that are unchecked.

Watch what you eat! Not everything put before us is an opportunity that is good. Daniel was presented with the king’s meat and wine, but “He purposed in his heart not to defile himself.” He put the knife of the Word of God to his throat and after several days proved God was greater. Don’t let your desires control you! Give your weakness to God now, and have faith in His Word and power to help you.

Have a disciplined God morning!

Bible Reading Schedule: Mark 8-9

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