I was inspired to write this post after reading Pastor Nathan Rouse’ article, A Caution for Every Christian that Drinks Alcohol. I don’t think he took his argument far enough . . .
Something unhealthy has crept into the American church and it’s quite distressing. Many Christians have allowed themselves to take eating fast food lightly. Now, before you start throwing your empty hamburger wrappers at me, let me be clear: I don’t believe eating fast food is a sin (in spite of the fact that doing it might very well send thousands of people into Hell). Of course, gluttony is a sin; and let’s be clear, obesity is one of the biggest killers in our society and continues to take a destructive toll on marriages and families.
But, there’s an even bigger problem!
The often overlooked sin rearing its ugly head are Christians openly displaying their love and consumption of fast food to those around them in public and on social media, when there are many around them who struggle with this temptation and addiction.
The Apostle Paul addressed this same issue in his day when the Christians in Corinth argued over whether or not they could eat meat sacrificed to idols. Paul clearly stated that, even though they had the freedom to eat meat sacrificed to idols, they should be sensible enough not to eat it in front of those who struggled with this practice. Check it out for yourself (there is absolutely no possible way to misinterpret or misapply this passage of scripture):
“Only take care lest this liberty of yours [in our case, eating fast food] somehow become a stumbling block to the weak. For if any one sees you, a man of knowledge, at table in an idol’s temple [a.k.a McDonalds], might he not be encouraged, if his conscience is weak, to eat food offered to idols [i.e. a Big Mac]?” (1 Corinthians 8:9-10)
What this means is this: shame on you when you share pictures on Facebook of you enjoying a juicy hamburger!
Now, before you say you only eat fast food with others that are like minded or with your spouse, let me ask you the following questions:
- Do you highlight or joke about your french fries in person or on social media (posting pictures like this one on the world wide web for all to see)?
2. Do you eat your fast food in public when there’s a good chance you might bump into someone who struggles with gluttony (oh, and believe me, you will)?
Whether you like it or not, people are watching you . . . oh yes, they are always watching you . . . and holding you to the highest possible standard. Therefore, you should never ever, upon any circumstances, do anything. The goal of the Christian is to be a people pleaser–we never want anyone to get the wrong idea. One false step could be fatal! Eating a french fry could be the straw that breaks the camels back! Consider this scenario:
Billy (a Christian) orders a value meal from McDonalds and decides to eat it in the restaurant. Michael (who struggled with gluttony for years, had a gastric bypass, and lost 400 pounds) walks by and sees Billy taking a bite of his hamburger. This tempts Michael who enters McDonalds, orders a meal, and falls, head long, into the never ending pit of overconsumption. In three months, Michael finds himself, once again, struggling with obesity . . . and it’s all your fault! How could you be so heartless?
Do you love fast food so much that you are willing to undermine your Christian witness? Do you love your “freedom” so much that you could care less how it affects another brother or sister? Do you realize that anything you do in public could send someone spiraling out of control?