Spiritual Gluttony

Bill Brinkworth

Spiritual Gluttony“But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves.” James 1:22

Many have had the opportunity to hear scriptural teaching again and again. From the pulpit they have heard what God wants them to do.  Fromtelevision, radio, and biblical-based articles they have also heard what God’s will for them is.  Christian acquaintances and family members may also have voiced biblical principles.  All the biblical input has fattened their head knowledge of spiritual and biblical things, but they have not reacted to or moved on what they have learned. They are hearers of God’s Word, but are not doers of His commandments (James 1:22-25).

Through preaching they have heard a clear message on what the Bible says one must do to be saved, yet they have not trusted Christ alone as their way to Heaven.  They have heard how God expects each and every child of God to tell others how to be saved, yet many have not even made one attempt to tell another how to be saved. A sermon showed them how it is stealing from God not to tithe (Malachi 3:8-10).  They nodded their head in agreement with the preacher on that matter, yet they still have never faithfully given to the local church part of what they have earned that week. An accidental hearing of a radio message convicted them deeply of a sin they were involved in, and their guilt over the sin’s commission had bothered them for a while; but they still have not made one attempt to curb their sin.  On and on the list could go of truths they have heard from the Word of God.  Admittedly, most know what God wants them to do, and what He does not want them to do.  Yet, all that knowledge lies somewhere in their brain; unused and unapplied.

Many are appalled at those that have gained enormous amounts of weight.  They shake their head as television interviews reveal people that weigh 500 pounds or more.  They diagnose the eater’s problem quickly; the over-weight person is eating more calories than he is burning up in exercise or daily usage.  They see how dangerous it is for the heavy one to sit all day in front of the television consuming bags of chips, and other junk foods. Yet, they do not see the parallel between one who eats more than he uses and their own spiritual fatness of absorbing the things of God and utilizing very little of what they have heard. Spiritually, they have become obese; yet they do not see their unhealthy spiritual condition. They hear preaching, read their Bible, go to church often, and even listen to Christian radio and television regularly. However, it only goes in, and very little spiritually comes out of what they have learned.

I have heard many “obese” Christians wax eloquent.  They boast of how many years they have attended church, or how much Scripture they know.  I have often felt dumb after hearing them give a demonstration of their head knowledge of the Scriptures. They are quite knowledgeable. However, that feeling goes away when I hear their testimony of never having witnessed to one soul, never having done anything for the Lord but sit and soak, or never having showed any signs of spiritual growth in their lives.

What are you doing with the things of God you have heard?  God did not allow you to learn His ways just for you to appear smart about the things of God, or to inflate your pride.  He allowed you to hear his message, so that you would do for Him what He desires.  Are you doing what God has shown you to do? Are you burning spiritual “calories”?

Scriptures related to this subject can be found at: James 1:22-25, Matthew 7:21, Luke 6:46, Luke 11:28, Luke 12:48, Romans 2:13, I John 3:7.

We are not to sit and soak, but to seek and serve!


This article was featured in the Bible View #312.

This article was also posted at www.DevotionsFromTheBible.com.

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