Thursday, August 07, 2008

The Spiritual Implications of Physical Fitness

This past school year that was very intense for me and I didn't have much time for anything else. Besides not exercising since I left Brasov at the beginning of December 2006 I haven't been eating very healthy as well. During the month of June I was trying to recover from everything but even though I was not very busy I seemed tired all the time. I decided during the second week of July to start lifting weights again and eating better. So far I have lost 5 kg/11 lbs of the 6.5 kg/14 lbs I put on since I moved to Bucuresti.

Since I started working out others in the church have expressed an interest in wanting to start lifting weights and losing weight so this past Saturday I did a fitness workshop with a focus on using dumbbells for the major muscle groups and 11 people showed up for it. Below is what I shared at the start of the workshop on the spiritual implications of fitness. If you have any other thoughts regarding this please add them in the comments. At the bottom you will see links to a few articles I have come across dealing with these issues and also a link to a 170 MB zip file with all the videos, handouts and extra stuff I
found on the web that I used in the workshop or made available to those that came to the workshop.

Biblical Considerations

Psalm 139:13-16
13 For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother's womb. 14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. 15 My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place. When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, 16 your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.

Ezekiel 16:49-50
As surely as I live, says the Sovereign Lord, Sodom and her daughters were never as wicked as you and your daughters. 49 Sodom’s sins were pride, gluttony, and laziness, while the poor and needy suffered outside her door. 50 She was proud and committed detestable sins, so I wiped her out, as you have seen. (NLT)

2 Corinthians 6:16
What agreement is there between the temple of God and idols? For we are the temple of the living God. As God has said: "I will live with them and walk among them, and I will be their God, and they will be my people."

1 Timothy 4:8
For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both.

Spiritual Implications

  • Our bodies were created by God, they are good. We are not to think that the body is bad, that type of thinking is Gnostic in nature and unbiblical
  • God ordained us to be stewards over all He created, even our bodies
  • Our fitness and health impacts us physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually
  • Our fitness and health also impacts the quality of our service to God
  • While taking care of our bodies is a good thing, if we are not careful we can make it a god thing, a false savior, an idol that we put our trust and hope in instead of God or that we look to it to derive our worth rather than from God and the fact that we were created by Him in His image, that Jesus came and died on the cross for us and that the Father has adopted us into His family
Here are the links I mentioned above:

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