Section 3: Humanity
Week 2: God Created Us Body and Soul
Day 2: The Body Is Not Inherently Evil
Given what we’ve said about God’s concern for our spiritual growth, it would be easy to get the wrong idea about the body. We have a tendency to see the body as the source of our sin. After all, depending on what translation you have, in Romans 8 Paul says “Those controlled by the flesh cannot please God. You, however, are controlled not by the flesh but by the Spirit, if the Spirit of God lives in you…” (Rom. 8:8-9).
But when he says, “flesh”, Paul is referring to human nature in general, not just the body. When it comes to assessing human nature, we need to remember two things: Our material side was created to be just as good as the spiritual. And our spiritual side is just as fallen as the material.
We associate the body with sin because we use it to do so many horrible things. But think about it for a moment. We do those things because we want to do them. That means the horrible things we do with the body are intimately associated with the inner spiritual part of ourselves. Where else do those desires come from?
So we can’t hang all the blame for our sin on the body. The truth is, we can grieve God with our spirits just as much as our bodies.
The flip side is also true, though. We can use our bodies to glorify God. Our hands can build homes for the homeless. Our arms can comfort those who need consoling. Our voices can offer praise to God for all he has done for us.
Our bodies, therefore, aren’t inherently evil. That makes sense because God is the one who gave us bodies in the first place. He could have made us purely spiritual beings, but he didn’t. So we shouldn’t look at our bodies as just obstacles to overcome. The body is an integral part of who you are. Use it to glorify God.
Are you ever tempted to think of the body as the “less spiritual” part of yourself? Why do you think that is? Do you think that is in line with what the Bible teaches?
Come up with one way you can glorify God with your body today, and then do it.