Drugs, Diet, and Death - Part 2

Scripture: 1 Corinthians 10:31, 1 Corinthians 6:19-20, Genesis 1:29
Most Americans follow their appetites when it comes to eating and drinking instead of using good reason. We should be able to curb and control our appetites so we can follow God's guidelines. We need to stop and think about what we eat.
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In the USA alone, more than 60 people commit suicide each day. The most popular three methods are by shooting, poison and hanging. But millions more are committing suicide by another slower, but equally effective method. Each time they walk to the dinner table they take one step closer to the grave. This is why it is impossible to separate diet from the total picture of health we began to discuss on our last broadcast. Millions of people are almost literally digging their graves with their teeth. Poor habits of eating and drinking account for a large portion of deaths and disabilities in this modern age.

But how much does the average individual know about his own body and how to take care of it? Doesn't it seem strange to you that the average parent knows more about the physical needs of the chickens in the pen or a dog in the house than he does about the needs of his own children? The average man knows more about the needs of his automobile than he does about the physical needs of his own child. Why is there such an incredible amount of ignorance concerning the way to take care of this sacred body temple? We believe that the human body is sacred and has been created for a purpose. It is to be taken care of, preserved and maintained according to the specific rules and health principles. The trouble is that most Americans simply follow their appetite in matters of eating and drinking. Very few human beings are willing to exercise a measure of self-control and self-denial when it comes to the indulgences of the flesh. Every one of us has been born with a depraved appetite. We cannot help ourselves on that, it is a part of human nature. That is the reason a baby will eat dirt, trash, roaches, pins, tacks, almost anything he gets his hands on. But friends, when we come to the age of accountability and responsibility, we should be able to curb and control our appetite and our physical cravings so that we conform to the rules and regulations of God.

You may be asking, does the Bible really have something to say about what we ought to eat and drink? My friends, if there is any relationship at all between good health and religion, then the Bible should certainly be concerned with this question. Listen to 1 Corinthians 10:31. "Whether therefore ye eat or drink or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God." Now let's read a text that will forever settle whether or not our health is a spiritual matter. We referred to it already.

1 Corinthians 6:19,20: "What, know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's." What a solemn thought this presents. Our bodies are not really our own. We belong to God. His Holy Spirit is to inhabit these body temples and we must preserve them for that purpose.

Some people are saying that it doesn't make any difference how they take care of themselves, they feel that their body is their own, and they can deal with it as they please. That really doesn't make much sense, friends, when you analyze it. To me it would be just as foolish for you to be flying with a pilot friend over the mountains of North Carolina and look down at the gauges on the panel and say, "Well, it looks like your are about out of oil and gas, but it doesn't make a bit of difference I suppose." The fact is, it would scare you to death.

And then, if that pilot landed at the airport and told the man to put some coal oil into the high compression engine and some used oil into the crankcase, how far would you want to ride with that pilot after that? Now listen, there is a manual that goes with this body of ours just like a plane has a maintenance manual. If God tells you to burn 100 aviation octane don't try to get by on 80. And if He tells you to be careful about overindulging the body with rich foods and not being gluttonous, then you had better pay attention to that also.

The man who puts salt water in the radiator or sand in the crankcase is a fool, but not any bigger fool than the man who will put alcohol, dirt or too much rich food into his human system. I am sure you can see how foolish it is for a man to drive into a service station and ask for the best permanent anti-freeze to put in his radiator, and then go next door and get a bottle of liquor and put it in his human system to enter the delicate lining of his stomach and pass through the blood stream to the liver to begin cirrhosis of the liver and paralysis of the brain. And yet, thousands and thousands of people are doing that very thing. Millions of them are doing it, in fact. They seem to have no concept whatsoever of how to take care of the delicately balanced body that can be so easily destroyed. The American people are sort of like the little bird when the mamma bird comes home. He just throws his mouth wide open and apparently it doesn't make any difference whether a beetle or a bumble bee goes down his throat. The cook stove is a murderer in most homes, and after our foods are poisoned, cooked, killed, fried, baked, boiled, mashed, hashed and seasoned, we don't get much of the original good that was in them when they were harvested.

All right, what is to guide an individual in the question of good eating and drinking? Should we allow appetite to be our rule in the way we eat? Isaiah 55:2 says we should eat that which is good. Remember this. Our appetite can be perverted and lead us to actually destroy ourselves. It is never a safe guilde. Let's turn now to the Bible and see if there are some rules given which might apply to this subject.

It is interesting to note that the Bible records the original diet of man before sin entered the world. In Genesis 1:29 we read: "And God said, Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in the which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat." In Genesis 3:18 we find that following the entrance of sin vegetables were added to man's diet. And so God designed that man's menu should be fruits, grains, nuts and vegetables. This is somewhat different to that of modern man.

Time magazine some time ago carried a brief article entitled, "Zoo Plate," in which it listed the items on the menu of a group in New York City. I am quoting from that article: "In Manhattan, members and guests of the Explorer's Club are a smorgasbord of roast caterpillar, barbecued Japanese snake, fried Japanese ant eggs, fried grasshoppers, pickled African honey bees, Bombay duck, stuffed squid in its own ink, roast seal flipper, hard boiled quail eggs, salted whale skin, bits of reindeer steak, boiled Italian sparrows, fried Mexican Agave worms, raw calves' eyes Armedian."

What a departure from the simple original diet God prescribed for good health. In fact, the world has swung far, far away from that perfect formula laid down by God. Rich pastries and animal protein, you will notice, were not even included in that diet. In fact, meat was never allowed to human beings, apparently, until after the flood at which time God permitted the use of certain clean animals for food. Now the reason for this extra provision becomes clear as we study the case more closely. Remember that Noah took the clean animals into the ark by sevens and the unclean animals by twos. Genesis 7:2,3. God had a purpose for this arrangement. After the waters subsided, all vegetable matter, of course, had been destroyed; and God allowed the clean animals to be eaten for the first time. Perhaps you are wondering which animals are clean and which are unclean. Why did God make any distinction in them even back there in the days of Noah? Some people seem to think that only the Jews were to be careful about the food they ate. But the distinction between clean and unclean foods goes all the way back to the flood before there were any Jews in existence.

In Leviticus 11:3-10 God listed the rules which governed the eating of flesh foods. Notice verses 3 to 7. "Whatsoever parteth the hoof, and is clovenfooted, and cheweth the cud, among the beasts, that shall ye eat. Nevertheless these shall ye not eat of them that chew the cud, or of them that divide the hoof: as the camel, because he cheweth the cud, but divideth not the hoof; he is unclean unto you. And the hare, because he cheweth the cud, but divideth not the hoof; he is unclean unto you. And the swine, though he divide the hoof, and be clovenfooted, yet he cheweth not the cud; he is unclean to you. These shall ye eat of all that are in the waters: whatsoever hath fins and scales in the waters, in the seas, and in the rivers, them shall ye eat. And all that have not fins and scales in the seas, and in the rivers, of all that move in the waters, and of any living thing which is in the waters, they shall be an abomination unto you: Ye shall not eat of their flesh..."

Now notice, friends, something very interesting. Those animals which are forbidden as food seem to be the very ones that Satan has created an appetite for today. The swine, for example, has been accepted in the world as good food, and yet God says not to eat it, not to touch it. I don't believe that we necessarily have to prove the scientific reasons for God's prohibition in this matter. If God says it is unclean, I believe it, I accept it. But it is interesting to read what modern research has established about the hog. Pork contains a tiny microscopic worm called Trichina, and if it gets into the system, the disease Trichinosis results. Governments warn that there is no inspection for the parasite. Some have thought that thorough cooking of the meat might destroy the trichina parasite, but surely all these millions who have suffered the disease didn't eat their pork raw or half-cooked. No, God knew what the body of man needed for food. But He said don't eat the swine. Other animals also mentioned as unfit include the fish that don't have fins or scales. Some may ask just why God made these unclean animals if they are not to be eaten at all. Well, the obvious answer is they serve the purpose of being scavengers on the earth. The buzzard, the eagle and the swine were made for the purpose of cleaning up the refuse of the earth. Again, let me remind you that these are not restrictions which originated with a ceremonial ordinance of Moses. They were a part of that law, but clean and unclean animals were present in the ark hundreds of years before Moses even lived.

Now let's read another text in Isaiah 66:15-17, and this ought to settle it for all of us. "For, behold, the Lord will come with fire, and with his chariots like a whirlwind, to render his anger with fury, and his rebuke with flames of fire. For by fire and by his sword will the Lord plead with all flesh; and the slain of the Lord shall be many. They that sanctify themselves, and purify themselves in the garden behind one tree in the midst, eating swine's flesh, and the abomination, and the mouse, shall be consumed together, saith the Lord."

This text is talking about the second coming of Jesus and proves that the nature of those animals will not experience any change that will make them fit to eat not even down to the very last day of this earth when Jesus comes.

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