God Wants My Body (Reading Romans 12:1)

“I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of god, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice. . .” Romans 12:1a

So God wants my body? For the bulk of us there is nothing in this world about which we are more insecure and displeased with than our bodies. People who are proud of their bodies wear tight T-shirts in the winter. Most of us hate those people. People who are proud of their bodies take lots of pictures of themselves and put them on Facebook. The rest of the world is much more insecure. The reason I know this is because their Facebook profile picture is not them. It may be a picture of a comic book hero. Most often it is a picture of their kids. There are a lot of people I went to High School with who now look like they are seven years old. Most of us hate our bodies.

So why does God want my body?

In a previous post I talked about how the prevalent philosophy in Paul’s day viewed the body as an awkward prison of the soul. The body was a trap. The logical conclusion of this is that a person can do whatever they want to with their body as long as their mind and spirit was involved in seeking greater things. This is most plainly expressed in Gnostic belief.

We sort of practice a Gnostic cop out when it comes to morality. Because the urges and passions of the body are so strong we do not feel there is any reason to resist them. We give in too easily. Giving in too easily to Oreos and Ice Cream is why most of us hate our bodies. But the problem goes much deeper. Paul taught us back in Romans 3 that the body is a key instrument in expressing our depravity:

Their throat is an open grave;
they use their tongues to deceive.”
The venom of asps is under their lips.”
Their mouth is full of curses and bitterness.”
Their feet are swift to shed blood;
in their paths are ruin and misery,
and the way of peace they have not known.”
There is no fear of God before their eyes.”

If we are to rightly express our faith we must do something about our body. If we cannot change our speech from bitterness to blessing, our path from bloodshed to peace, we will be nothing less than hypocrites:

"From the same mouth come blessing and cursing. My brothers, these things ought not to be so."[2]

A person who says they follow Christ and cannot do so with their body is questionable at best. True worship is not merely an inward thing. If we worship God only inwardly, which is where most would like to keep their religion, it is unacceptable to God. God wants our body. We must be fully engaged in God. The deeds of the body, whether done in a dark room or in plain sight, are a testimony to the heart. You cannot separate what you do from who you are.

God wants your body!

[1]The Holy Bible : English standard version. 2001 (Ro 3:13). Wheaton: Standard Bible Society.
[2]The Holy Bible : English standard version. 2001 (Jas 3:10). Wheaton: Standard Bible Society.


Tyrone Ferrara said…
For many are called, but few are chosen.

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