First of all, this post is not so much about dieting as it is about our spiritual walk. However, the facts about our diet are what spurred my thoughts. Recently our family watched a documentary about food, nutrition, and how most people in America are overfed and undernourished. Although there is nothing particularly enlightening about that, one of the principles mentioned really got my attention. The idea is that when it comes to diet, we should focus less on the bad things we’re eating and start adding good nutrition to our bodies. As we add good, nutritious food, our bodies will respond in a positive way. Then, as we add more good things, we will eventually develop healthy eating habits and the bad food will slowly disappear from our plate. At least that’s how it’s supposed to work. You see, most diets FAIL because they are based on a NEGATIVE premise. The attitude of most dieters is “I wan’t that, but I can’t have it!“, so, of course, your body naturally craves what it can’t have, and eventually, we give in. The better attitude is, “I could have that, but I don’t want it“.
Many Christians are like someone struggling with weight gain. They desire a close personal walk with Christ, but they have long been frustrated over their inability to DO what they think they have to DO in order to be “spiritual”. Depressed and dejected, they end up more frustrated than when they started, just like the dieter who eventually gains back all the weight they lost, plus some. They focus mainly on everything they “can’t” do instead of understanding the LIBERTY they have in Christ. Many Christians have been programmed from the pulpit on what they can’t say, where they can’t go, how they can’t dress, what they can’t watch, and so on. Are there some things we shouldn’t say? ABSOLUTELY. Are there some places we shouldn’t go? Of course! Are there some forms of dress that Christians should avoid? Certainly! However, we should also remember what the apostle Paul said in his letter to the Colossians in chapter 2 verses 20-22:
20: Wherefore if ye be dead with Christ from the rudiments of the world, why, as though living in the world, are ye subject to ordinances, 21: (Touch not; taste not; handle not; 22:Which all are to perish with the using;) after the commandments and doctrines of men?
Was Paul saying that it was a good idea to touch, taste, and handle everything? Of course not. What he WAS saying is that it was silly to voluntarily put yourself back under such man-made ordinances after Jesus Christ had set you free from them. Consider also what Paul told the Corinthian believers:
I Corinthians 6:12: All things are lawful unto me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but I will not be brought under the power of any.
Paul knew he could do ANYTHING he wanted to do (all things are lawful) without jeopardizing his salvation. His life was hid with Christ in God (Colossians 3:3), and as a Christian, there was nothing that could separate him from the love of God (Romans 8:38-39). What LIBERTY! What FREEDOM! What JOY! What SECURITY! Paul is, however, careful to mention that although nothing can affect his sonship to God the Father, there are things that could hinder his path toward God’s will for his life.
Philippians 3:14: I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.
If you are saved, the first thing you need to understand is that He has already made you ACCEPTED:
Ephesians 1:6: To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved.
There is absolutely nothing you can, or need, to do in order to be acceptable to God. He has already MADE you accepted. Got it? If not, read this:
II Corinthians 5:21: For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.
In short, what this means is that if we are “in him”, that is “in Christ”, we are as righteous as God. I didn’t say it, God did. It’s just difficult for us to believe.
So, for the dieting person, your focus should NOT be on losing weight, but rather eating healthy. Your body will take care of the rest.
For the Christian, your focus should not be on NOT SINNING, but rather feeding your spiritual man the best diet possible and nurturing your walk with the Lord. As your spiritual health improves, your flesh will lose its influence.
Galatians 5:16: This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh.
Christianity is not about being someone you’re not, but is rather yielding to Jesus Christ, accepting the fact that you are accepted, and allowing Him to live through you.
This post is primarily for those who have placed their faith in Jesus Christ as their personal Saviour. If you have never entered the family of God through the New Birth of John 3:3, that is your first step. You must realize that NO amount of “religion” or “good works” will get you an inch closer to heaven. Your destination as an unsaved soul is Hell, and the only thing that will change that is to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ as your Saviour.
Romans 10:9: That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.
Pastor Darren LaRue
Anchor Bible Baptist Church
3165 Hwy 35 East
West Alexandria, OH 45381