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There is great emphasis placed upon the handling of certain foods. In restaurant management, the idea of proper food handling is stressed to the greatest degree. Even in homes, folks are very careful when they handle chicken, beef, fish and other types of foods. Why all of this concern? Because certain foods can be very dangerous if not handled properly. We’ve heard of many cases of food poisoning in the news over the years. At times, we’ve even heard of people dying. Therefore, folks are extremely careful when it comes to handling food. I’m told that in certain time frames of history, there were people known as cupbearers who served royalty. One of the jobs of these cup bearers was to taste the drink, or the food, before the king would eat it. The reason was to make sure it was not poisoned. If the cupbearer lived, then the king could safely partake of the food. This was possibly part of Nehemiah’s job (Neh. 1:1). Why is it that kings were so cautious about what they ate? Why is it that people today are so careful when they handle their food? Simple, people don’t want to get sick or die! Therefore, they are extremely cautious. What about our spiritual lives? John wrote in 1 Jn. 4:1, “Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world.” Which is more important, life here or life eternal? Jesus gives us the answer, “And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. But rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell” (Matt. 10:28). I believe that people who handle their food carefully are very wise for doing so. We should protect and care for our physical bodies. But, it amazes me that people see the importance of being careful of food poisoning, but completely ignore the presence of spiritual food poison. John said in the above verse that many false prophets have gone out into the world. They’re poisoning the supply of spiritual food. We need to be careful what we eat spiritually. Test the spirits! Why is it that people will be careful about what they swallow physically, but will hurriedly swallow just anything that they are fed spiritually? There are many types of food poisonings in the world. There are also many types of spiritual food poisoning in the world. We avoid physical food poisoning by properly handling the food. We avoid spiritual food poisoning by properly handling the word of God. And how is this done? By studying diligently! “Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not be ashamed, handling aright the word of truth” (2 Tim. 2:15). John said “test the spirits.” He meant for us to compare the things we are taught with the word of God to see if they line up with truth. Are you testing the spirits?
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