Body Building

Body Building

There is a lot of focus on taking care of our physical bodies these days. It seems that body building is the current fad right now, with new gyms popping up everywhere.

As Christians, we are also called to be body building. We are told in Ephesians 6:10 to be strong in the Lord. A few verses later, it mentions how we wrestle against spiritual forces in heavenly realms. One who is weak isn’t going to be very good at wrestling.

My brother is a fire fighter. He has told me how heavy the gear is that they must wear when they are putting out a fire. If they don’t stay in shape, it’s very hard for them to handle moving around with an extra fifty or sixty pounds added to their own body weight. It’s the same with us — we are required to put on the armor of God. If we don’t keep ourselves spiritually fit, we won’t be able to handle carrying the armor.

We are commanded to put on the belt of truth. This requires that we ‘work out,’ meditating and memorizing scripture so that we know the truth of God’s Word. To have the breastplate of righteousness in place, we must work to make sure that we are continually walking in a righteous fashion. If we slip and sin, we need to repent quickly, keeping ourselves ‘spiritually fit’ for the times when we are called to wrestle. We must have our gospel shoes on, ready to share God’s peace and good news. It takes a lot of hard work to continually be at peace with others.

Moving on to the helmet of salvation, which protects our thinking, we must work hard to renew our minds. (Rom. 12) In Phil. 4, we are told to think upon those things which are true, noble, right, pure, lovely, admirable, or praiseworthy. To do these things, it requires diligent body building on our part.

We are told to hold up the shield of faith, but if we aren’t faithful to ‘body build’ our faith, where will our faith be when we need it the most?

We are to work out our own salvation, (Phil. 2:10) and train ourselves to be godly. (II Tim. 4:7) This implies that Sunday morning and Wednesday evening services aren’t enough ‘training’ for us. If we only eat two meals a week, we aren’t going to be very strong. It’s the same in the spiritual realm. If we only ‘eat’ of the Word twice a week, we won’t be building up our spiritual muscles very well.

Colossians 1:22-23 tells us that God has reconciled us by Christ’s death to be holy and blameless in His sight IF we continue in our faith, established and firm. Many times you will see how the diligent work of a body builder has resulted in some very firm muscles. We are to be firm and not easily moved in our faith. To reach that point means that we need to do a lot of work on our inner (wo)man.

To strengthen our physical bodies, we have to go into a strength-training program. The more we continue to work out, the stronger we will be. Col. 2:6-7 tells us to continue to live in Christ, rooted and built up, strengthened in our faith.

Peter tells us that God has given us what we need to escape the corruption in the world. (II Pet. 1:4) He goes on to inform us that we need to make every effort to add to our faith goodness, knowledge, self-control, perseverance, godliness, brotherly kindness, and love. Peter tells us that if we possess these qualities in an increasing measure, they’ll keep us from becoming unproductive in our knowledge of the Lord. In verse 10, he tells us that if we do these things we will never fall. Why? Because we have been faithful in our body building and we have become a strong and virtuous warrior for our Lord, strengthened and ready for battle.

Excuse me now as I prepare to do my daily body building.
© 2004, Stacy R Miller

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