Eating and drinking must be some of the most basic intentional activities of mankind. Certain bodily functions, heart beating, breathing, etc., are more basic to human living than eating and drinking, but eating and drinking are surely the most basic human activities that require explicit decision, forethought, preparation and action to remain physically alive.

This is why God provided food and drink to the Israelites in the desert to demonstrate His extraordinary care of them. No wonder giving someone something to eat and drink is the most basic form of showing neighbourly love (Pro 25:21; Matt 25:35).

Although the true faith is not defined by personal rights to food and drink (Rom 14:17), eating and drinking are nonetheless part of a God-like worldview. Repeated in Ecclesiastes, the book of meaning in an otherwise meaningless world, the activities of eating and drinking are used to demonstrate that God intends even the most basic things in life to be seen as gifts from Him that can be received and enjoyed with great faith.

There is nothing better for a person than that he should eat and drink and find enjoyment in his toil. This also, I saw, is from the hand of God, for apart from him who can eat or who can have enjoyment?

Ecclesiastes 2:24-25 (ESV)

I perceived that there is nothing better for them than to be joyful and to do good as long as they live; also that everyone should eat and drink and take pleasure in all his toil—this is God’s gift to man.

Ecclesiastes 3:12-13 (ESV)

Behold, what I have seen to be good and fitting is to eat and drink and find enjoyment in all the toil with which one toils under the sun the few days of his life that God has given him, for this is his lot.

Ecclesiastes 5:18 (ESV)

And I commend joy, for man has nothing better under the sun but to eat and drink and be joyful, for this will go with him in his toil through the days of his life that God has given him under the sun.

Ecclesiastes 8:15 (ESV)

Go, eat your bread with joy, and drink your wine with a merry heart, for God has already approved what you do.

Ecclesiastes 9:7 (ESV)

God created mankind to be eating and drinking beings. God makes it possible for you to enjoy a good meal or a good drink. It is God’s gift to you to be able to eat and drink. God approves that you eat and drink, and even encourages it. God has a lot to say to get you to see that eating and drinking is part of His plan for your life. Even in God’s future Kingdom, eating and drinking will exist as expressions of extraordinary fellowship and blessing (Lk 22:30).

It is therefore not a surprise to find Jesus using your fear of going without food and drink in His lesson on worry. God wants you to eat. God wants you to drink. Don’t be anxious about your food and your drink, for God will take care of it (Matt 6:31).

So, next you time you sit down for a meal and follow whatever prayer-traditions you might have, remember that eating and drinking is God’s gift to you—both now and in the future!

If a man can eat bread and drink water to God’s glory, then he can do all to God’s glory.

adapted from 1 Corinthians 10:31