Should we be concerned with our appetite in the last days? If so, why? To answer this question, looking at the following two Bible verses. What do they have in common?
“And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die: For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil” (Gen. 3:4, 5).
“And when he had fasted forty days and forty nights, he was afterward an hungered. And when the tempter came to him, he said, If thou be the Son of God, command that these stones be made bread” (Matt. 4:3).
If you said that they both show Satan tempting Eve and Jesus to rebel through cultivating a sinful appetite, you’re right. Satan knew that if he could condition man to indulge foods, practices, and habits that God forbade, he would develop an insatiable appetite for more of them. He knew that their perverted appetite would gradually lead to their own destruction. This sinful hungering for evil ultimately led to the destruction of all of Noah’s generation (Gen. 6:5, 13).
Unfortunately, we have developed a hunger for the same sinful things. Before our Lord returns, we must curb our destructive appetite for the forbidden, lest we be devoured by the judgment of God like Noah’s generation.
But is this matter that serious? Yes, very much so. Take overeating, for example. Overeating is one of the many sins that come from a failure to control our appetite. According to Health Guidance, some of these mental effects of overeating are:
- loss of self-confidence and self-esteem.
- emotional distress, as excessive attachment to food items prevents emotional contentment or fulfillment after every meal.
- feelings of loneliness, restlessness, boredom and frustration.
- prioritization of food over relationships with friends, family, relatives and the social circle also.
- problems of concentration, focus and memory.
Indulging any sin will develop a similar mindset and dependency in those who gratify their hunger for these things. It doesn’t just stay at the dinner table. It affects every aspect of your life, including your faith. If we fail to recognize this sin-dependent mindset for what it is now and deal with it, it will ultimately work against us. How so?, you may ask.
The Scriptures tell us expressly that a time of trouble is coming, “…such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time…” (Dan. 12:1). When that time comes, no one will be able to buy or sell without having the mark of the beast (Rev. 13:16, 17).
In other words, if you overeat, you can’t buy food without selling out your faith. You won’t be able to gratify any sin without rejecting Jesus, especially if buying and selling are involved. If you have not conquered your appetite for destruction before this time, your appetite will conquer you. Your sin-dependent mindset won’t be able to resist the cravings for unconquered sins. The hunger for them will be so overpowering, they will drive you to forsake Jesus. Esau forsook his birthright to gratify his hunger (Gen. 25:29-34). Judas betrayed Jesus to gratify his pride and his love for money (Jn. 12:1-8; Mt. 26: 14, 15). Imagine how much more our cravings for sin will move us to betray Him and our fellow believers before He returns!
We have to overcome our appetite for destruction in the last days. The Lord has not left us without means to do this. Remember, He was also tempted to cultivate an appetite for destruction just like us. But He showed us that by living by every word that “proceedeth out of the mouth of God” (Matt. 4:4) and by having the indwelling presence of the Holy Spirit, we can cultivate a hunger for the things which will do us good in the latter days (Ps. 19:7, 11-13; 1 Cor 3:16, 17; Gal. 5:16, 17; Rev. 2:7, 11, 17). The fruits of the Spirit and the things which are pure, honorable, and lovely will be more desirable to us when we fast from the things that lead to death (Gal. 5:22, 23; Phil. 4:8). Do you hunger and thirst after righteousness? Pray and prepare for Jesus’ Coming, that He may fill you when He returns (Matt. 5:8).
“For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feelings of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin” (Heb. 4:15).
“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 Jn. 1:9).
“Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God” (1 Cor. 10:31).