Exercise can decrease you risk of heart disease, increase your energy levels, improve your mood and self confidence, improve your memory, help you sleep better, and slow down the aging process. And yet most of us still find plenty of excuses to not exercise. This seems to be especially true in the church, where dedication to exercise is often mistaken for vanity. The truth is that Scripture encourages us to engage in physical activity in exercise. Considering the numerous benefits of exercise, it is obvious that God created us to be active, that we were Made to Move.
Many people are familiar with 1 Corinthians 6:10-20, in which the Apostle Paul exhorts us to take care of our bodies.
“Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and that you are not your own? 20 For you have been bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body.” (1 Corinthians 6:19-20 NAS95S)
While many have heard this verse used to teach that we should avoid promiscuity, alcohol, tobacco and drugs, it is rare that we are taught that this verse is not just a warning to avoid these activities, but is an exhortation to be proactive in caring for our bodies. We should make sure that we keep our bodies in peak condition at all times. That means that we are to glorify God both with the foods we eat to fuel our bodies, but also that we are to engage in physical exercise. In fact, in his first letter to Timothy, Paul says:
“For bodily exercise profits a little, but godliness is profitable for all things, having promise of the life that now is and of that which is to come.” (1 Timothy 4:8 NKJV)
Some people take Paul’s words that bodily exercise profits a little but that godliness is profitable for all things as a dismissal of exercise, which makes for a convenient excuse for them to sit around on their duff. But that is not what Paul is saying. First, we have already seen from 1 Corinithians that God is greatly concerned with the what we do with our bodies. Second, we have to consider the context.
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