Listen to this post NOW on Beyond Everything Radio!
Our world is confused about our bodies. Despite all the noise about those with some form of gender dysmorphia, that form of bodily disintegration is nowhere close to the real problem. Most people believe that they are their bodies. Of course, it’s easy to understand how we draw this conclusion, since the self (our soul, our essence, our true being) seems somehow intertwined with the bodies we possess. Most of us think of our bodies in a binary sense. To correct this mistake, we must realize that we are NOT our bodies, while at the same time we are NOT OTHER than our bodies.
Our confusion and over-identification with our bodies stems from the scientific worldview which has no empirical way to measure life and being other than directly measuring the body and its function. Science therefore concludes life and body are coextensive and we are left with an anthropology which is too small. This is not the only place where science is illogical. Remember, science cannot account for any non-physical form of reality which it cannot measure. Science must presuppose things such as mathematics, logic, reason, and love all exist, but it cannot prove them empirically.
Science understands our bodies as biochemical reactions, and a random amalgamation of endless mutations over an immeasurable amount of time. All the beauty, design and genius visible within our bodies is attributed to time and chance and therefore it ultimately cannot have meaning other than avoiding pain and pursuing pleasure for our survival. Is it any wonder that our world, who has forsaken the biblical worldview, is now confused about our bodies and sees them as temporary meat suits which have no real purpose besides self promotion and preservation?
Paul reminds us that we will outlive our bodies. Life is not a byproduct of the body, life is put into the body by the Source of life, for a reason, and for a purpose. Until we understand that reason, we live confused about or bodies.
“All things are lawful for me,” but not all things are helpful. “All things are lawful for me,” but I will not be dominated by anything. “Food is meant for the stomach and the stomach for food”—and God will destroy both one and the other. The body is not meant for sexual immorality, but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body. And God raised the Lord and will also raise us up by his power. Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ? Shall I then take the members of Christ and make them members of a prostitute? Never. Or do you not know that he who is joined to a prostitute becomes one body with her? For, as it is written, “The two will become one flesh.” But he who is joined to the Lord becomes one spirit with him. Flee from sexual immorality. Every other sin a person commits is outside the body, but the sexually immoral person sins against his own body. Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.” (1 Corinthians 6:12-20)
Our minds, intelligence, emotions, behaviors and beliefs are on display in our bodies. If we are undisciplined, impulsive, weak willed, or distracted…all of this manifests in our bodies. If we are focused, disciplined, purposeful and strong in our minds, emotions and intelligence, then our bodies move into conformity to these things… up to a point. When we are sick, injured, aged, or disabled, it means our self and our bodies are disconnecting. When our bodies are not functioning in concert with our will we are said to be sick or dying. Our life span in this body, is a period of time learning how to live in our bodies…then, we are to use them as instruments for Life’s purpose, and then the design is a gradual detachment from our body until our body dies and our life separates from it.
Our life doesn’t die.
I’m always quoting Kierkegaard who put it so eloquently in his book “A Sickness Unto Death”:“When death is the greatest danger, one hopes for life; but when one becomes acquainted with an even more dreadful danger, one hopes for death. So when the danger is so great that death has become one’s hope, despair is the disconsolateness of not being able to die.”
Our bodies are all on borrowed time, each has an expiration date that none of us know, but life works on nonetheless.
“For we who live are always being given over to death for Jesus’ sake, so that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh. So death is at work in us, but life in you.” (2 Corinthians 4:11-12)
We therefore must find our purpose which is working in tandem with others to build a New World from the inside out. The body’s purpose is not to be one of 8 Billion separate bodies, each competing for resources like beasts, but to come together and form a single body which is greater than the sum of its parts. Society is a body comprised of individuals who striving to find themselves within their disintegrated mind-body-soul experience. The reason all societies eventually fail and collapse is that the corruption in the heart and mind of humanity, corrupts the larger corpus and the suffering of not knowing oneself is the sickness that is potentiated upon the entire collective body.
The blueprint for how this is supposed to work is that each individual body is to be integrated (Mind, Body, Soul) to our Maker and designer where we know our true identity and self and we are healed from the lethargy, anxiety, and depression of not having meaning and purpose. Then as we know our true self, and the unique gifting designed into our unique bodies, we are to serve one another with our unique gift as a way of glorifying our Maker. Then as each person finds themselves “In Christ”, the collective body, functions in unison “under Christ” as head, and the corrupt world is subverted and the New world emerges out of the ashes. Our bodies are meant for the Lord and his work of ministering to others and glorifying God. This microcosm or collective body who shares one common leader within the hearts of each member is called the (eklessia)”Assembly” or the “Gathering” or the “Church.” This Spirit within each of us (Life), is the proof that something bigger is at play and it exists despite our mortal limitations.
“…we have this treasure in jars of clay, to show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us.” (2 Corinthians 4:7)
Back to the opening passage. “The body is meant for the Lord and the Lord for the body…” What we do with our bodies matters. Morality is the framework within which all people are to learn to govern the spiritual dynamics within them for the purposes of developing their bodies, souls and minds, and thus bring in the New world. An immoral person is someone who has never discovered the purpose for their body and whose spiritual, emotional, and mental capacities are in bondage to their flesh. This central relationship has been corrupted, causing the belief that the body is in service to pleasure and comfort. It’s not that the world has sex and gluttony and vices, but that such things have our world.
Healing is the reorientation of our bodies, minds, and souls into conformity to our purpose in concert with our available time. Look in the mirror, what do you see? What has been the result of living out something which is untrue? What don’t you see which is killing this body? What belief, mindset, or assumptions are toxic to this body and thus contributing the corruption of the world? What about your body seeks comfort, and avoids healing discipline? We all know these things about ourselves and we can see the nonphysical world etched into our bodies with time. We all know we can and need to do much better. Our bodies are telling us what is going wrong and what is going right. Healing is a lifestyle of knowing the truth and living it out for the sake of others and the world our lives are building. This is the biblical worldview which needs to be returned to full view.
The question behind our bodies is: “Will I do the soul work needed in my body, in my life, so I can live integrated within my sphere? Or will I live disintegrated, cut off, and lost and live as a slave to my appetites and impulses of my flesh? Folks, our bodies have a purpose that includes all of us, and reaches far beyond each of us. Our bodies are a beautiful gift, they should not be under appraised, nor over appraised, but developed and sacrificed for the sake of others, and for our Maker.
“Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day.” (2 Corinthians 4:16)
One thought on “What about my Body?”
Great perspective on the purpose of our bodies and how they relate to our soul and identity! It’s important to realize that we are not just our physical bodies, but something more. This article reminds us that our bodies have a purpose beyond just survival and self-promotion, and that we should use them to serve others and glorify our Maker.
founder of balance thy life https://balancethylife.com