Some people enjoy scholarly debates and arguments. But the Bible states we should stay away from arguments and look for the fruits of the teaching. The blind receiving sight and the crippled receiving the ability to walk were evidences Jesus used to show that the Almighty God was behind what He was doing. Likewise, the fruit found in others' lives, which comes from adopting these fresh but timeless principles, is the only reference or recommendation we use in the Weigh Down Workshop. "Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves. By their fruit you will recognize them. Do people pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles? Likewise every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit"
If you choose to try what we are suggesting, you will know immediately if it is truth or not. On the other hand, there are those who do not want to find God. They will argue with the validity of the very obvious and extraordinary fruit of deliverance and change in the lives of people in the Weigh Down Workshop'''. Stay focused on the results.
Jesus made the blind see, and Bible teachers of the day still argued that His message was not from God.
Jesus answered, "My teaching is not my own. It comes from him who sent me. If anyone chooses to do God's will, he will find out whether my teaching comes from God or whether I speak on my own."
Most of us have lived long enough to know that if you have been delivered from compulsive behaviors and you now "get it" (you were blind, but now you see), and suddenly you read the Old and New Testaments with understanding, then God has to be involved. In other words, most people recognize that it has to be attributed to God's truths, for only God could have saved them from entrenched overeating, drug dependence, and depression. These are not small matters. We are talking about prisoners unchained and captives set free, broken hearts that no bypass operation could remedy, being restored. This is bigger than the Berlin Wall coming down. It will be very hard to keep this kind of rescue quiet across the world.
Yes, the rescue is from God, and the rescuer, Jesus, was foretold by Isaiah hundreds of years before Jesus walked on the earth.
The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me, because the Lord has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners, to proclaim the year of the Lord's favor and the day of vengeance of our God, to comfort all who mourn, and provide for those who grieve in Zion— to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair [depression]. They will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the Lord for the display of his splendor. (Isaiah 61:1-3)
What a beautiful picture of what is happening to you right now! Look at the fruit in your life from living these truths, or just look at where you once were and where you have come. You have just been delivered from the clutches of the mighty Pharaoh, and you have been led across the Red Sea by the hand of God. Many of you have tried everything to escape the prison of dieting and the pain of overweight and now are joining a great exodus of people finally turning to God for His mighty rescue.
Just as the Israelites were set free from Egypt, you have just been set free to love God instead of the refrigerator or pantry. You have just been set free from making bricks for Pharaoh (dieting, counting fat grams, have-to exercising, pills, liquid fasts, foods you do not want to eat, constant weighing, clothes that do not fit, and the scorn
of men,... you fill in the blanks). The exciting thing is that you have found yourself doing "self-controlled" things that you have never done before, such as leaving food on your plate, eating regular food, forgetting that-it is lunchtime and, at the same time, finding yourself interested in learning more about God and communicating with Him. You surely have been rescued! .But this is a journey. Just as Scripture says: "Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed—not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence—continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you to will and to act according to his good purpose"
We need to continue to work out this salvation, to put off the old way of living and to put on the new. To do this requires your heart. Eventually, there will be an end to major battles with food or whatever you are working on with the Father.
As we have just described, you have already felt a difference in that your heart is pulled less by the refrigerator. You feel that one day you can walk away from your old love, food, and into the arms of the Father. But you have some distance to go before you get to the point that your heart has no desire to turn to food for comfort or for delight. In other words, you have some distance to go before your heart has been thoroughly tested. My prayer for you is: "Godspeed through the Desert of Testing to the Promised Land."
I personally was not desert-ready; I was unprepared for sandstorms, desert vipers, and hot temperatures. I hope that the words on these pages and in the following chapters of Phase II will help to make your journey a little easier. The Israelites took forty years to get to the Promised Land!
According to the map, a trip by foot from Egypt to the Promised Land should take only one or two weeks. But God was going to have to teach the Israelites some very important lessons first. He used the hot desert to strip them down to nothing so they could see what was in their hearts. From Egypt, they were led to the Desert of Sinai, or what I refer to as the Desert of Testing. The following chapters will help you along through the wilderness. Look at each of the following chapters like one desert oasis after another, a cool drink of water on your desert path.