A fool filled with food
Proverbs tells us that there are three, yes, four things that cause the earth to tremble. The first one is a slave who becomes king. The second one is a fool when he is filled with food.
Who is a fool? A person who acts unwisely or imprudently. An imprudent person is one who does not show care for the consequences of his actions. He is rash. A rash person shows lack of care or consideration of possible consequences for his choices. A fool is someone who does not think before he acts, does not check his tongue before he speaks, and does not care about consequences. He is selfish, unwise, and full of folly. A fool does not have good sense. He lacks common sense. He is not fun to be around or to have for a friend.
Add a full stomach to the foolish person, and you have disregard for others or their needs, disdain for those who do not have what he enjoys, and lack of care for those who are hungry or in want. This person shows selfishness and an attitude of “living it high” while he knows others are suffering. A person who exhibits selfishness in the things he desires to consume is gluttonous and unhealthy. When a person is glutted with meat or drink, it dulls his reasoning. He has little regard for the care of his body and usually ignores the dangers from what he consumes.
When I think of a foolish person with a full stomach, I remember Templeton, the rat in the story Charlotte’s Web. While people are not animals, and a foolish person is not a rat, the characteristics of this pretend rat are exactly those of a foolish person with a full stomach. Templeton is a “greedy, greedy, gluttonous, lazy, and rather selfish rat who helps Charlotte and Wilbur, only when offered food.” In the end, he helps Charlotte save Wilbur from death, but mostly because he receives food in return. Templeton was a fool filled with food.
His motive is selfish and his disdain makes the other barnyard animals dislike being with him. Templeton has abilities that he uses to help Charlotte. Yet, his goodness is hidden by his attitude and actions.
No wonder Proverbs speaks disparagingly of a fool filled with food.
The rest of the story
Who wants this type of person for a friend or an ally? This is why “the earth trembles” when a fool filled with food makes his presence known. Discord, selfishness, and rash actions affect not only the foolish person, but others. A person with lack of self-control wrecks havoc on those around him. He affects not only his family, but his workplace, his community, his church, and his world.
A selfish person looks out only for himself in the now. A person who bases decisions on the good of the whole will be discreet and a person of self-control. That’s the type of person we should attempt to become.