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Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Love to Eat, Hate to Eat: Chapter 4

Chapter 4:
We are God's Temple

God does not call us to be consumed with thinness or beauty.

However, we should be concerned about caring for our God-given bodies.
We need to care for our bodies because each of us are a creation of God and because God purchased your body through the blood of Christ when you became a Christian.

1. We are God's creation...

"For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother's womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well."
Psalm 13:13-14

In Psalm 139 the writer starts by rejoicing in God's omniscience and his omnipresence. He is thankful that God is with him, no matter where he goes. He is thankful because God's thoughts are with him all of the time. Then the writer speaks about God lovingly creating his body. He is thankful that God created his body with specific strengths, weaknesses, and abilities. God created him specifically and uniquely in order to glorify Himself.

Our thankfulness for God's creation should come from a heart
that delights in His work,
not in our appraisal of it.

Have you considered lately how miraculous your body is? Think of all the amazing details that make your body function day in and day out. God made our bodies to reflect His image and likeness - our bodies are amazing! God has also made our bodies frail so that we depend on Him for strength. Have you ever considered being thankful that your body isn't perfect or that you aren't more beautiful? If you were "perfect" would you need to depend on God the way you do in your imperfection? When God made man and woman He said that it was very good. When He made you he spoke the same words. God doesn't make mistakes. He made you the way that you are on purpose and for the purpose of glorifying Him.

We are to eat healthy then because we are God's creation. We show honor and love when we care for the things that God has entrusted to us. When we care for our bodies we also make God known to the world around us.

2. Our bodies belong to God as his Sanctuary...

Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and that you are not your own? for you haev been bought with a price; therefore glorify God in your body.
1 Corinthians 6:19-20

Do you not know that you are a temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwells in you?... for the temple of God is holy; and that is what you are.
1 Corinthians 3:16-17

These verses explain that our bodies are dwellings for God's Spirit. Just like a temple building in Jerusalem, so too your body is set apart, occupied, and inhabited by God. Would you consider desecrating your church building? No. We must treat our bodies the same way; as holy because it is God's home just as the church is God's dwelling for His Spirit. The God who created the universe also fills and dwells inside of us. God's name "Immanuel" means "God with us."

Our bodies are on this earth will never be perfect or free from disease and death. Despite illness and imperfections, God wants us to treat our bodies with care so that we can be used to glorify Him. We are not to see good health as a god or idol. If you are focusing on perfecting your body for peace and joy then the work you can do for God may be hindered. Your body is a tool in the master's hands. When we are healthy He can use us to do His work.

Remember that caring for your body is not the goal of life - glorifying and loving God is. Caring for your body is merely a means to an end and one way to say thank you to the Lord for all the things He has done for you.

The Price He Paid...

1 Corinthians states that "we are bought with a price." The cost of our bodies is the blood of Jesus Christ. Jesus paid his life, not only for our bodies, but our souls. Because of the great price He paid, we should glorify Him in everything we do. When you are tempted to sin, think of the cross. Jesus suffered and died so that we would be found blameless and pure in the sight of God. Instead of being controlled by the thoughts of food, exercise, starvation, purging or bingeing; be controlled by the cross. Be controlled by his great love and mercy towards you. We are His now, we are not our own. We can rest in Him knowing that we are redeemed and He has great plans for our lives.

Love to Eat, Hate to Eat
Elyse Fitzpatrick
Copyright 1999