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Sugar-coated preaching or teachingBut for right now, friends, I’m completely frustrated by your unspiritual dealings with each other and with God. You’re acting like infants in relation to Christ, capable of nothing much more than nursing at the breast. Well, then, I’ll nurse you since you don’t seem capable of anything more. As long as you grab for what makes you feel good or makes you look important, are you really much different than a babe at the breast, content only when everything’s going your way? ~ 1 Corinthians 3:1-3, MSG

You’re going to find that there will be times when people will have no stomach for solid teaching, but will fill up on spiritual junk food—catchy opinions that tickle their fancy. They’ll turn their backs on truth and chase mirages. But you—keep your eye on what you’re doing; accept the hard times along with the good; keep the Message alive; do a thorough job as God’s servant. ~ 2 Timothy 4:3-5, MSG

Don’t be lured away from him by the latest speculations about him. The grace of Christ is the only good ground for life. Products named after Christ don’t seem to do much for those who buy them. ~ Hebrews 13:9, MSG

 

Definitions:

1. Ear-Candy gospel or Sugar-coated preaching/teaching ~ sweet to the ears, pleasant to hear, feel good gospel messages/sermons that damage the SOUL; void of necessary portion of solid spiritual food, such as spiritual MEAT; unlike spiritual MILK (the initial foundational Divine Teaching), spiritual MEAT is a vital part of believers’ spiritual dietary regime, because spiritual MEAT affects the SOUL’s ongoing spiritual growth.

2. ‘Spiritual’ Junk Food ~ interferes with spiritual hunger for Christ Jesus; wreaks havoc on holy and righteous lifestyle; curbs spiritual appetite for genuine godly spiritual nutrition; often a “different” gospel than the Gospel of Christ Jesus; mostly watered-down Gospel messages/sermons full of worldly or secular humanistic ideas, pop psychology mixed with a little Divine Truth, and catchy drivel that taste good but lack any spiritually nutritional value.

 

WARNING: Excessive sugar and excessive junk food in a spiritual diet have the potential of negatively changing believers’ overall spiritual health!

 

There are many worldly wise sayings that have spiritually prudent practices. For instance, the old adage of ‘you are what you eat’ certainly is applicable in either its natural or spiritual sense.

In the natural, everywhere we look there are advertisements and articles (television commercials, billboard signs, YouTube videos, Internet items, blog entries, magazine/newspaper pieces, and etc.) that remind us that if we want to be physically healthy we need to avoid eating candy and junk food by eating wisely—eating healthy foods (vegetables, fruits, whole grains, lean meats, and the like). In the spiritual, the Holy Spirit inside us constantly is reminding us that if we want to be spiritually healthy we need to avoid both ear candy (sugar-coated preaching or teaching) and ‘spiritual’ junk food (wrong thinking, wrong talking [discussions, telltales, conversations…], wrong living, and so on) by eating correctly—eating healthy spiritual foods (feasting off of, or enjoying eating slowly, to the last piece, the Word of God, which is full of godly wisdom, godly understanding, godly discernment, etc.; feasting off of godly preaching or teaching, which is obedient to and full of Father God’s sound Divine Truths and Christ Jesus’ foundational Divine Teachings, which are in the Word of God;  feasting off of godly music, books, articles, which are full of the Word of God’s Divine Truths and Divine Teachings on how to live a genuinely holy and righteous lifestyle, how to serve the Lord, how to worship God in Spirit and in Truth; and so forth). 

The bottom line is this: In order to have spiritual health that is ‘good’ for the soul, true believers daily must feast off of, or enjoy eating slowly, to the last piece, the Word of God. Furthermore, believers frequently must feast off of only those preachers, teachers, singers, philosophers, writers, and so on, who are preaching, teaching, singing, postulating, or writing about the unadulterated Gospel.

Without doubt, believers cannot afford to allow any kind of false preaching or false teaching (leaven) into their spiritual souls or minds, because even a little leaven (a little false doctrine/ideology/teaching; or, a little perverse and obstinate unbelief) is so potently harmful it can corrupt the entire soul or mind (cf. Mark 8:15; see also Matthew 16:11-12, and Matthew 22:16). Put differently, just a small amount of ANY kind of false preaching or false teaching (leaven) is detrimental to believers’ spiritual health.  

Even the apostle Paul says:

Just because something is technically legal doesn’t mean that it’s spiritually appropriate. If I went around doing whatever I thought I could get by with, I’d be a slave to my whims. ~ 1 Corinthians 6:12, MSG

~ and ~

Looking at it one way, you could say, ‘Anything goes. Because of God’s immense generosity and grace, we don’t have to dissect and scrutinize every action to see if it will pass muster.’ But the point is not to just get by. We want to live well, but our foremost efforts should be to help others live well. ~ 1 Corinthians 10:23-24, MSG

Apostle Paul’s point in the above verses is that having been set free doesn’t mean we who are believers in Christ Jesus have the freedom to do ANYTHING, not even something that is not sinful, if what we do ends up grieving weak souls (minds) or causing weak souls (minds) to stumble in their Faith walk. In essence, ANYTHING that is lawful (within someone’s power to do) doesn’t mean it is godly advantageous, feasible, appropriate, or wise to do. For this reason, it is all that more important that not only should Christian preachers, teachers, singers, philosophers, writers, and the like beware of the worldly ‘spiritual’ food they are feeding the Lord’s sheep, but also His sheep (followers/believers) must avoid being fed sensual ear candy, as well as avoid being fed ‘spiritual’ junk food.

If neither ministers (servants) nor sheep is obedient about avoiding these abovementioned unwholesome kinds of carnal or sensual foods, then it is very certain that not only these ministers but also these sheep will be seduced, deceived, and controlled by the worldly sensual power of their own bodily appetites—will be seduced, deceived, and controlled by the taste good, sound good, feel good, smell good, look good, but the not at all ‘good’ for them worldly power that is in the unhealthy sensual ‘foods’ they either are feeding or eating, or both! In short, both sensual ear candy and ‘spiritual’ junk food taste good and promptly satisfy spiritual hunger, but neither has any potential to provide spiritually nutritional changes to the human soul!   

In summary, godly spiritual growth is built on ‘solid food’ (spiritual MEAT), which once again is believers’ obedience to Father God’s sound Divine Truths and Jesus the Christ’s foundational Divine Teachings, which are in the Word of God. Put differently, instead of being under the power of the sensual ear candy (sugar-coated preaching or teaching) and the ‘spiritual’ junk food (wrong thinking, wrong talking [discussions, telltales, conversations…], wrong living, and etc.) they have ingested, born again, saved, and being sanctified believers who are growing in Grace and progressing in the Faith by daily renewing their souls (minds) ALWAYS should be under the Power of the indwelling and infilling Holy Spirit who godly leads, prompts, reminds, renews, reveals, teaches, and transforms the Lord’s believers.  A word to the wise should be sufficient. Amen!