Health Lesson 4: Our Bodies Belongs to God


Focus Text:

“What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.”

— 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 (KJV)

Did God give us human bodies to use and abuse as we like, or does He expect more? How does He expect us to view and care for the marvelous bodies He designed?

Many people believe, “It’s my body, and I can treat it any way I like.” But what does our Creator God say?

We are fearfully and wonderfully made

Psalm 139:13 (KJV) “I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvelous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well.”

“Fearfully and wonderfully made” is how King David described God’s creation of human beings. David praised God for this marvelous work called the human body.

What does the following verse say about God’s ownership of my being and why He wants us to take care of ourselves?

1 Corinthians 6:19-20 (KJV) “What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.”

If God meant simply to convey the idea that the Holy Spirit lives within the believer, He could well have used words such as “home,” “house,” or “residence.” But by choosing the word “temple,” He conveys the idea that our bodies are a shrine, or a sacred place, in which the Spirit not only lives, but is worshiped and honored.

If our bodies are to serve as a temple or dwelling place for the Holy Spirit, does God have specific expectations about how we treat and care for our bodies?

Consider how king David prepared to build the temple

Read 1 Chronicles 22:5; 29:1-9

The crowning achievement of King Solomon’s reign was the erection of the magnificent temple. But it began with his father, David.

It is obvious that in David’s heart, the house of the Lord was important. He told the people, “. . . the house to be built for the LORD must be exceedingly magnificent, famous and glorious throughout all countries” (1Chronicles 22:5).  For David understood, “the palace[temple] is not for man, but for the Lord God” (1Chronicles 29:1).

David did more than just prepare – he prepared abundantly. “So David made abundant preparations before his death” (1 Chronicles 22:5). David himself said, “Now for the house of my God I have prepared with all my might….” (1Chronicles 29:2).

Yes, David’s approach to the temple influenced others in a positive way. When the people saw David’s zeal and his diligent preparation, it was contagious; they, too, rejoiced and “offered willingly to the LORD” (1Chronicles 29:9).

How is David’s example a lesson for us as we consider our bodies as God’s temple? How can our efforts here and now leave a positive legacy for the next generation?

Present your bodies a living sacrifice

Romans 12:1-2 (KJV) “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God” (compare Hebrews 8:10).

It is interesting to note that in the Old Testament, all of the sacrifices were dead animals when they were offered up unto God. In the ancient Jewish service it was also required that every sacrifice should be without blemish. Paul’s admonition to the believers in Rome was to sacrifice themselves to God, not as a dead sacrifice on the altar, but as a living sacrifice: a life of consecration, dedicated to God.

What does it mean to present our bodies as a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God? What kind of sacrifice does God desire? (See Galatians 2:20Galatians 5:22-24Psalm 51:16,17)

The presenting of the body to God implies not only the avoiding of the sins that are committed with or against the body, but the using of the body in the service of God. It is to glorify God with our bodies (1. Corinthians 6:20), to engage our bodies in a diligent attendance to our particular callings, and be willing to suffer for God with our bodies when we are called to it. It is to yield the members of our bodies as instruments of righteousness (Romans 6:13).

Christian Liberty, 1 Corinthians 10

1 Corinthians 10:23-24 (KJV) “All things are lawful for me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but all things edify not. Let no man seek his own, but every man another’s wealth.”

What does Apostle Paul mean by, “All things are lawful unto me, but all things are not expedient:” (read 1 Corinthians. 10:25-28)

Is it possible, even in our pursuit of doing what is “right” or lawful, we can cause harm to others and dishonor God?

Christians must not merely consider what is lawful, but what is expedient, and to edify others. Christians should also take care not to use their liberty to the hurt of others, or to their own reproach. In eating and drinking, and in all we do, we should aim at the glory of God, at pleasing and honoring Him.

In 1 Corinthians 6:12, what does Paul mean by, “all things are lawful for me, but all things edify not.”?

Just because something is permitted by God or “lawful” for us to eat or drink, are they always beneficial?

Is it possible that some of your favorite foods are considered “lawful” according to Scripture but actually harmful to your health? Explore.

Glorify God in your body

1 Corinthians 10:31 (KJV) “Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God” (Compare 1 Corinthians 6:19-20).

Are there ways in which we eat or drink that would bring glory to God? Or not?

Luke 21:34 (KJV) “And take heed to yourselves, lest at any time your hearts be overcharged with surfeiting, and drunkenness, and cares of this life, and so that day come upon you unawares.”

What does “surfeiting” mean?

Surfeiting (definition): excess or overindulgence in eating or drinking; an uncomfortably full or crapulous feeling due to excessive eating or drinking.

Heart disease is the number one killer followed by cancer in the United States. It is no secret that there is a strong link between these diseases and “surfeiting” or excessive, overindulgence in eating.

1 Corinthians 6:9-10 “Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: . . . . Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God.”

How important is it that we learn to control our own bodies?

1 Corinthians 6:12 “All things are lawful unto me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but I will not be brought under the power of any.”

1 Thessalonians. 4:3,4 (NIV) “. . . It is God’s will that you should be sanctified: . . . that each of you should learn to control your own body in a way that is holy and honorable.”

1 Corinthians 9:27 (KJV) “But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway.

Galatians 5:22-24 (KJV) “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance: against such there is no law. And they that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts.”

1 Peter 2:11 “Dearly beloved, I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul;” (also see Numbers 11:4, 13)

Summary: Living up to the Christian ideal of maintaining a healthy body must be done for the right reasons and should not be undertaken only in the pursuance of the superficial desire to lose weight and look good; It must be done mainly to bring honor and glory to God. Our bodies belong to God and thus we should treat it as such, a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable unto God.