Does God Want Us To Exercise?
I had to ponder this very question when my wife and I had the vision of starting this ministry. I knew that if we were to truly be doing God’s will then we had to consult and dig deeply into the scriptures and closely examine what God’s word says about exercise.
The Bible tells us in Gen. 1:26-27 that God says; “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness…So God created man in His own image; the image of god He created him; male and female He created them.”
With this in mind, we must look at Jesus when he walked the Earth. All depictions of Jesus are that of a lean, muscular, and healthy individual. He had the body of a carpenter. He wasn’t obese, out of shape nor would I think that he ate large amounts of fast food. So if we are made in his image we should follow suit, right?
1st Timothy 4:8 informs us, “For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come.”
Did you pick that up? It says that physical training is of some value. God could have very easily left that out, or he could have said it had no value, but he specifically says that physical training is of some value.
I Cor. 6:19 tells us: “…do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own?”
This one particularly hit home. Not only does God tell us that our body is the temple where the Holy Spirit dwells, but I am left with the very clear impression that these bodies are not our own. We are merely stewards of the bodies that God has entrusted us with. The next question that comes to my mind; “Are we being faithful servants and good stewards of God’s masterpiece?”
Psalm 139:14: “… for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; marvelous are Your works.”
Here we are told that we are wonderfully made and we are marvelous. We know that God is not a liar and he isn’t in the business of producing junk. So, if he says we are wonderfully made and marvelous, he means it!
These scriptures are just a few to illustrate my point. I know that Bible also tells us that we are not to become vain, conceited, nor lovers of our own bodies. We shouldn’t simply focus on the outer packaging of a man, but we need to focus on the heart of a man. We need to concern ourselves with our Spiritual Fitness as well as our physical fitness.
Just like anything in life, there are extremes in the area of exercise. Some people do nothing but focus on their physical appearance and the fitness level, while others neglect it totally. Neither one of these are a good example of balance in one’s life.
While the spiritual component of our being is, in biblical terms, more important, we are to neglect neither the spiritual or physical aspects of our health.
The goal of exercising, improving our fitness level and transforming our body, is not so that we are noticed, admired or desired by others, but rather it is so we can become a more effective witness for the good news of Jesus Christ.
If you go into it with the right intentions, stay focused on the ultimate prize, and concentrate on witnessing to others, then I would definitely say that there is nothing wrong with a Christian exercising.
What do you think?? We would love to hear your comments