The driving topic for today’s episode is the dangers of gluttony. Gluttony is one of the “respectable sins” in our culture today, but in spite of our efforts to laugh it off or treat it as no big deal, it is a serious sin. We must tackle this sin head-on for what it objectively is if we are to live in the temperance and freedom God calls us to, be the most winsome witnesses to the gospel that we can be, and honor God in how we engage with food. Food is a good gift from God, and He gave it to us not just for sustenance, but for enjoyment! But with food as with other gifts God gives us, we have a tendency to overindulge and turn the gift into an object of worship. We corrupt God’s good gifts to us, and harm ourselves in the process. Gluttony may take the form of overeating (and is a main cause, though not the only cause, of people being overweight), but it can also take other forms of paying excessive attention to food. As it is an example of lacking self-control, it is a symptom of a larger disease that can spill into other areas of our lives.
In light of the dangers of gluttony and its pervasiveness in our culture, what should we do? Ultimately, we should eat physical food in a way that tends to the satisfaction of our souls and the glory of God. Food is meant to point us to God and to eternity, and to be handled with self-control. Self-control is part of the fruit of the Spirit, and relating rightly with food requires being led by the Spirit rather than controlled by the flesh. Some practical tips for leaning into self-control and fighting the fight against gluttony include pursuing accountability, avoiding food shopping while hungry, planning meals and tracking caloric intake, drinking a lot of water, and intentionally remembering what food is actually for. And the good news for those who have already failed in their relationship with food is that they can repent. The Lord stands ready to forgive and to give fresh grace to use and enjoy the gift of food in moderation rather than being controlled by it.