“Make sure that no one is immoral or godless like Esau, who traded his birthright as the firstborn son for a single meal.”
~ Hebrews 12:16
We're told in the Book of Genesis that one day Isaac's son Esau returned home from a long hunting trip faint with hunger. When he saw that his brother Jacob was brewing some lentil stew he begged him for some, but Jacob (cunning as he was) took advantage of his brother's vulnerable position and offered him a deal:
“Sell me your birthright,” Jacob bartered, “And then I'll give you some stew.”
Esau, being the oldest son and rightful heir, reasoned to himself, “I am at the point of death, what good can this birthright do me?”
So he agreed, and Jacob gave him some bread and stew. After his hunger was satisfied, the Bible says that he got up and went along his way, “Scorning his birthright as beneath his notice.”
Hunger Can Cause us to Lose Restraint
In the parable of the Prodigal Son, we are told that after the young man squandered his inheritance in wild living, he became so hungry that even the pods he was feeding the pigs looked good to him.
Really, pig slop? Obviously at this point he was NOT in his right mind! And, oftentimes, neither are we when we let our hunger and food cravings get the best of us.
At the very core of these two stories is the sad description of two men who not only neglected to see past their noses (or stomachs), so to speak, it tells us something keen about hunger and food cravings:
They can be so strong that we toss aside self-control and common sense. And unless we overcome them, they may cause us to make completely irrational decisions.
Eating to Live, Not Living to Eat!
Case in point: We typically view people using deadly and addictive narcotics as not thinking rationally or even being out of their “right mind,” right? Yet, Americans justify eating over 150 pounds of sugar annually – which, according to Mark Hymen, MD, is 8 times more addictive than cocaine and has been linked to causing cancer, heart disease, ADHD and most illnesses seen today! Fact is, eating processed foods and sugar is arguably the #1 cause of death worldwide and no one seems to care.
Some experts claim that people are victims of their circumstances and have no hope of making the right decision. In the words of University of Connecticut researchers,
“High-fat/high-sugar foods stimulate the brain in the same way that drugs do. It may explain why some people can't resist these foods despite the fact that they know they are bad for them.”
However, this mentality takes away our ability to choose self-control and be empowered to live the Abundant Life. Truth is, it's not that people cannot resist harmful foods, some people choose NOT to resist them.
You are NOT a Victim!
I'm here to tell you that you are NOT a victim of food cravings and addictions. Don't sell your birthright! In Christ, you have been blessed with all that you need to overcome them and live the Abundant Life.
The Bible says that we have been given a spirit of self-control and, in fact, one of the fruits of the Holy Spirit is “self-control!”
Since “all the promises of God in Him are Yes, and in Him Amen,” we can stand firm that we have all that we need to say “No” to unhealthy eating habits and choose to eat Abundant Life-giving food every day!
How have YOU overcome food cravings and addictions?
- Genesis 25:29-34
- Luke 15:16
- Galatians 5:23
- II Timothy 1:7
- II Corinthians 1:20
- Sugar addiction: pushing the drug-sugar analogy to the limit.
- Intense Sweetness Surpasses Cocaine Reward
- Sweet poison: How sugar, not cocaine, is one of the most addictive and dangerous substances