"When you sit to dine with a ruler, note well what is before you, and put a knife to your throat if you are given to gluttony,. Do not crave his delicacies, for that food is deceptive."
Do you ever look at a Proverb and just skip over it, thinking to yourself, "This just doesn't apply to me?" I've passed over this one many times, because quite honestly although my husband has, I have never sat down to dine with a ruler. And somehow I doubt that I ever will. So I'm taking some liberty with this passage, but certainly not out of context with the Bible as a whole. So bear with me as I try to apply it to my life.
"When you sit to dine with a ruler......"
What might become a "ruler" in my life?
I really like food.
I love to read.
I like to garden.
I like to travel.
I like to sit down at night and turn on the television.
Wow! I could go on and on with endless lists, but as I look at the ones I have already written down, I can see that I am not eating delicacies; I am merely enjoying the things that life has to offer. This verse doesn't seem to apply to me! Or does it?
"When you sit to dine..."
Okay, I sit to eat--or read--or garden--or travel--or watch television. I am "partaking," so I guess that so far, so good with the application of this verse.
"With a ruler....."
I really like food. I really like food. Could food become a ruler in my life?
I love to read. I love to read.
Gardening is sometimes a passion for me.
Are you getting the picture? I guess some of these things could become a ruler in my life.
"Note well what is before you."
Here's where the problem begins. When there is something in our lives that can rule over us, we must be very careful to note it carefully. Much too often we just dive into something without taking any thought of what is before us. Movies......books........magazines......video games.......food.......recreation or relaxation......
"And put a knife to your throat if you are given to gluttony."
I hate this verse already! I don't want to give up the things that give me such pleasure! (My, my, Gloria. Can the Word of God cause you to respond like that? I thought you loved it!) I think that many times, although I would never really say that, my actions may show that I don't honestly love His commands as much as my vain mind might want to think. Partial obedience is total disobedience, and if I don't do what God says, then I am hating His commands.
"Do not crave His delicacies."
There are so many delicacies in this world that would draw our attention and our obedience away from the Lord. The enemy of the faith has devised many things that will distract us from our main purpose in life--to glorify God and enjoy Him forever. They seem like delicate morsels dangling in front of us. To some it is travel, which takes us away from the privilege of ministering in the local church or to our grown children or grandchildren. To some it is watching excessive or mind damaging television programs or movies.,or playing too many or too wrong video games. To others it is reading useless or ungodly books or magazines. I could go on, but you get the picture.
"For that food is deceptive."
Somehow that reminds me of another verse, in the New Testament:
"Do not be deceived; God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows. The one who sows to please his sinful nature, from that nature will reap destruction; the one who sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life." Galatians 5:7-8
Let's not be deceived by the "delicacies" of the things that would rule over us. Let us seek daily to please the One who is our King of Kings and Lord of Lords.
What are the delicacies of the potential rulers in your life of which you must not partake?
Praying for self control and a will to do God's will in all things,