Right now, I am preaching through the Sermon on the Mount on Sunday mornings at Shiloh. Recently, we looked at Matthew 5:27–30, the famous passage where Jesus addresses sexual lust.
I came across some famous material from C. S. Lewis, which I did not use. Lewis was addressing the out-of-control sexual appetite that society was demonstrating. This was probably the 1940s or 1950s.
To illustrate, Lewis speculated what would happen were a throng to gather together in a venue. The emcee comes out with a covered plate, and, very dramatically, removes the cover off of the plate. On the plate is food, and the people cheer wildly.
Lewis stated that this would be ludicrous. Yet, Lewis noted, people, typically men, would gather in a burlesque club and cheer women, who would gradually unclothe themselves. This, according to Lewis, was a sign that the sexual appetite of people was out of control.
Recently, it occurred to me, that Lewis’ illustration serving as a foil for sexual appetites out of control, is actually taking place today. There are now dozens of shows devoted to cooking on television. Other shows feature cooking events. In both cases, chefs prepare elaborate dishes and unveil them before a wildly cheering audience.
In an era when obesity is a national health issue, and in an age when arguably our greatest health tribulations come upon us because of overeating, do these food programs serve as metaphors for a culture, whose physical appetites are nowhere close to being under control?
Five Things I Think I Think (with a nod to Peter King for this idea)
1. SUMMIT was good. I really appreciate getting to stay with Steve and Marsha Ridgell and spending a good deal of time with my old college roommate and Argentina teammate, Tim Archer. I am proud of their ministry at HERALD OF TRUTH.
2. Of all the speakers I heard, probably the most memorable was Shane Claiborne, author of IRRESISTIBLE REVOLUTION and JESUS FOR PRESIDENT. I guess this is because I expected him to be dogmatic and militant. Instead, he was funny and flexible.
3. I just finished reading Steinbrenner: The Last Lion of Baseball by Bill Madden. I found it mesmerizing—and I am not a Yankee fan.
4. Happy Birthday this Saturday, love of my life. Don’t worry, I won’t tell how old you are. (Not a problem, Judy never reads my blogs. She says she hears this stuff all of the time.)
5. Tomorrow, September 28, I turn 50. When I was 20, I never thought that, at fifty, I would look as old as I do, feel as good as I do, or be as happy as I am.