Summary: This sermon picks up on the problem of gluttony in the west today and exposes the pitfalls of such a lifestyle.
Gluttony is a lifestyle
I wonder if you have seen that great scene in the the Monty python film where there is a man over indulging himself with food to the disgust of the waiter. As the gentlemen eats he’s get fatter and fatter to the point where he is absoulutly full and he cannot eat anymore. His body looks like it will explode at any minute! Then the waiter encourages him to eat one more item, a waifer thin after eight mint, he refuses at first but then he is encouraged too indulge one more time... then upon eating the waifer thin mint he bodily explodes in the resturant. That is a comical take on gluttony but it is an epidemic problem in the UK and in the USA.
Gluttony; like lust is a carnal sin (involves the body) it involves perversions of physical appetites and in our voluntary behavioural response to the appetites.
In Leicester there wasa a man called Daniel Lambert Britons heaviest man was 19th cent 52 stone 11lbs, 9ft 4inch waist. Yet you can be as thin as a rake and still be a glutton !
Collins Dictionary; A person devoted to eating and drinking to excess.
1600A.D. Gluttony became to refer to overeating.
Gluttony is a major problem in the western world today more and more people are being diagnosed as clinically obese okay some may have some sort of chemical imbalance or whatever, but most cases are due simply to over eating!
Obesity Causes 30,000 deaths per year, in 1980 men 6% women 8%. 2002 men 19% women 20 % 2005. men 20%
women 25% half a billion pound a year spent related to heart disease. In the USA 27 %. Theses figures show a trebbling in 20 years.
And the environment we live in does not help with pumping advertisements and offers, to us 24 hours a day. We live in a world where excess is best !
If there was a word that could some up our generation, it would be excess. In all spheres of life, wealth to the point of greed, health to the point of pride, relationships to the point of lust, possessions to the point of coveting and food, drink and drugs all to the point of gluttony.
Like the movie star who may well have had five husbands, the football star with ten cars the pop star with endless parties !
Many live life excessively as if true happiness is found in these things. When in reality it brings with it burn out an emptiness. Even though many people are full of the things of this world in a sense excess is just a polite way of saying were Gluttonous in our sins today here in the west. And if we are going to be honest with ourselves that can spill out into our own lives do we have any excesses in our own lives as Gods people today do you suffer with the sin of gluttony?
Why should we refrain ?
Well proverbs 23:19. wisdom crys Listen, my son, and be wise, and keep your heart on the right path.
1Cor 6;19,20. Do you not know that the body is a temple of the Holy Spirit , who is in you, whom you have received from God.You are not your own you were bought at a price. Therefore honour God with your body. 3Jhn.v2.Body/Soul Good health.
Today even the secular world frowns upon gluttony. A glutton is self indulgent and greedy.
The Rich man and Lazarus
The context of the Rich man and Lazurus is that Jesus was addressing his disciples but as ever the Pharisees were there listening in also and always ready to criticise or sneer v14. They were a constantly watching Jesus Christ as he undermined their way of life which had become greedy and self indulgent in fact they were the ones who called Jesus a glutton yet truly they needed to look close to home !
Again preaching to disciples and the crowds He gives seven woes in Matt.23:25. “Woe to you teachers of the law and Pharisess, you hypocrites! you clean the outside of the cup and dish, but inside they are full of greed and self indulgence.”
Oour Society is self indulgent. In the 1980,s - 21st century the boom years in the UK we saw the rise of "Yuppies" they lived life in the fast lane they were the winners in the dot com revolution, even when bubbles burst still today there are those who are gluttons for excess in all areas of life.
If we are to be those who takes ones appetites excessively, extravagantly, for ones own personal satisfaction this means we are simply a selfish man and a glutton;