TEXT: 1 Samuel 4:12-18
12 And there ran a man of Benjamin out of the army, and came to Shiloh the same day with his clothes rent, and with earth upon his head.
13 And when he came, lo, Eli sat upon a seat by the wayside watching: for his heart trembled for the ark of God. And when the man came into the city, and told it, all the city cried out.
14 And when Eli heard the noise of the crying, he said, What meaneth the noise of this tumult? And the man came in hastily, and told Eli.
15 Now Eli was ninety and eight years old; and his eyes were dim, that he could not see.
16 And the man said unto Eli, I am he that came out of the army, and I fled to day out of the army. And he said, What is there done, my son?
17 And the messenger answered and said, Israel is fled before the Philistines, and there hath been also a great slaughter among the people, and thy two sons also, Hophni and Phinehas, are dead, and the ark of God is taken.
18 And it came to pass, when he made mention of the ark of God, that he fell from off the seat backward by the side of the gate, and his neck brake, and he died: for he was an old man, and heavy. And he had judged Israel forty years.
This is an uncomfortable subject for many of us, but if you listen and take heed, this particular series can not only change your life spiritually, but it can save your life physically.
Regarding this passage, Adam Clarke writes, “Eli bore all the news till the messenger came to the solemn word about the ark of God; he had trembled before for the ark, and now, hearing that it was captured, he was transfixed with grief, fell down from his seat, and broke his neck! Behold the judgments of God! Though remiss in the education of his children, and criminal in his indulgence towards his profligate sons, which arose more from the easiness of his disposition than from a desire to encourage vice, it is doubtful that this man is gone to perdition. No man ever died with such benevolent and religious feelings, and yet perished.”
One area that we know for sure Eli was undisciplined in was in raising his children. He didn’t discipline his sons, and he didn’t discipline himself to do the hard work of parenting. As Clarke writes, he was “indulgent” toward them, letting them do what they wanted when they were young, and when they got older, he was unable to stop them from doing evil.
Like the lack of discipline that causes gluttony, the lack of discipline in family life is epidemic in the church today. Unlike gluttony, though, it is often easier to hide an undisciplined family life for a while because we are able to go to church for an hour or two on Sunday and pretend that everything is in order — from the preacher’s family to the people in the pew. The same principle that we have been applying to overcoming gluttony applies here: Christians are disciples of Christ, and our lives ought to be marked by discipline, not just in religious matters like prayer, reading the Bible, and attending church, but in all matters — including eating, exercise, raising our children, and ordering our families in the things of God.
PRACTICAL STEPS: REGARDING INTERMITTENT FASTING:
James Clear, author of “The Quick Start Guide to Intermittent Fasting,” writes: “It is helpful to realize that you’ve probably already fasted many times, even though you don’t know it. Have you ever slept in late on the weekends and then had a late brunch? Some people do this every weekend. In situations like these, we often eat dinner the night before and then don’t eat until 11am or noon or even later. There’s your 16-hour fast and you didn’t even think about it. Finally, I would suggest doing one 24-hour fast even if you don’t plan on doing intermittent fasting frequently. It’s good to teach yourself that you’ll survive just fine without food for a day. Plus, as multiple research studies have outlined, there are a lot of health benefits.”
PRACTICAL ADVICE ON EATING RIGHT: In “The RAVE Diet and Lifestyle,” Mike Anderson continues sharing why he recommends not using any vegetable oils. He writes, “The Omega-3’s in vegetable oils are highly unstable and tend to decompose and unleash free radicals that cause damage to cells. Vegetable oils have also been implicated in several different studies with cancers and polyunsaturated fat turn out to be the strongest promoter of skin cancers of all the foodstuffs we eat. Vegetable oils also suppress the immune system and actually promote the spread of some cancers.”
Now, we are going to continue looking at some “Frequently Asked Questions About Intermittent Fasting” from Healthline’s “Intermittent Fasting 101 – The Ultimate Beginner’s Guide”:
3. Can I take supplements while fasting?
Yes. However, keep in mind that some supplements (like fat-soluble vitamins) may work better when taken with meals.
Now, in this series, as we focus on overcoming the sin of gluttony, and managing our bodies as God intended, we must not lose sight of the most important part of our existence — our spiritual life. Even those of you who are fit, who eat right, and who exercise regularly must still address the condition of your soul. You may keep your body in perfect condition till the day you die, but you will still die — we all will, and the only thing that will matter is the condition of your soul. Is your soul in shape? Is your soul in right standing with God?
The only way to make sure of that is to trust Jesus Christ as your Savior from sin and the consequences of sin. He alone can save your soul, put you in right standing with God, and ensure that you do not perish in Hell. Now, if you do not know Jesus Christ as your Savior, here is how you can trust Him today.
First, accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God’s law. The Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”
Second, accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”
Third, accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” Also, the Bible states in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”
Now that is bad news, but here’s the good news. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will.
Romans 10:9 & 13 says, “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… For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
If you believe that Jesus Christ died on the Cross for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead, and you want to trust Him for your Salvation today, please pray with me this simple prayer: Holy Father God, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. I am sorry for my sins, and today I choose to turn from my sins. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. I trust Jesus Christ as my Savior and I choose to follow Him as Lord from this day forward. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.
If you believed in your heart that Jesus Christ died on the Cross, was buried, and rose again, allow me to say, congratulations on doing the most important thing in life and that is accepting Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour! For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door”. Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”
If you accepted Jesus Christ as your Savior today, please email me at [email protected] and let us know. There is some free material that we want to send you. If you have a prayer request, please e-mail that to us as well, and we will pray for you until you tell us to stop.
God loves you. We love you. And may God bless you.
Daniel Whyte III has spoken in meetings across the United States and in over twenty-five foreign countries. He is the author of over forty books including the Essence Magazine, Dallas Morning News, and Amazon.com national bestseller, Letters to Young Black Men. He is also the president of Gospel Light Society International, a worldwide evangelistic ministry that reaches thousands with the Gospel each week, as well as president of Torch Ministries International, a Christian literature ministry.
He is heard by thousands each week on his radio broadcasts/podcasts, which include: The Prayer Motivator Devotional, The Prayer Motivator Minute, as well as Gospel Light Minute X, the Gospel Light Minute, the Sunday Evening Evangelistic Message, the Prophet Daniel’s Report, the Second Coming Watch Update and the Soul-Winning Motivator, among others.
He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Theology from Bethany Divinity College, a Bachelor’s degree in Religion from Texas Wesleyan University, a Master’s degree in Religion, a Master of Divinity degree, and a Master of Theology degree from Liberty University’s Rawlings School of Divinity (formerly Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary). He is currently a candidate for the Doctor of Ministry degree.
He has been married to the former Meriqua Althea Dixon, of Christiana, Jamaica since 1987. God has blessed their union with seven children.