Oh well, so many articles, thoughts and debates about Christianity, Somehow we find it difficult to make our inner convictions visible. Church attendance, theology, gifts, functions, servant hood and other outer works are being submitted to thorough research again and again. We will, however, always end up at the cross at Calvary. That is where Jesus gave Himself in total surrender. He laid down His life in order to give life to all mankind.
Surrender. What a beautiful and difficult word, it is the foundation of the Christian faith. Surrendering ourselves, everything we have learned, everything we possess and everything we did wrong. Surrender is the dawn of a new beginning. God desires total surrender from every human being. Not because He wants to control us, but because He desires to heal and renew each aspect of our lives and to use it for His work here on earth. Offer yourselves to God, Paul says. That is giving our whole being as an instrument of righteousness. According to the Bible our whole being is spirit, soul, and body (1 Thessalonians 5:23).
The scripture I am using as a basis for this series can be found in Romans 6:12-14, Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body so that you obey its evil desires. Do not offer any part of yourself to sin as an instrument of wickedness, but rather offer yourselves to God as those who have been brought from death to life; and offer every part of yourself to him as an instrument of righteousness. For sin shall no longer be your master, because you are not under the law, but under grace.
In the previous blog posts we have seen that our spirit is born again (a new creation) and our soul is being saved (preserved). So, what is the deal with our body? The Bible says that our earthly body is mortal (see Romans 6:12 for example) and will therefore perish. Many churches regard the body (also called the flesh) as sinful and therefore most sermons will rather be about spiritual things than about physical things. Sermons about the body are not so popular. But the Bible speaks about it often and always in a very clear and simple way!
Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship (Romans 12:1). We need to offer (give) our body to God as a LIVING sacrifice. That sounds a bit theatrical, but it simply means we have to make our bodies available for His service.... to do stuff! To use our hands and to move our feet, maybe even to go to places where no one wants to go.
The Bible warns against wrong use of the body (sexual immorality, gluttony etc.). In 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 we can read the following, Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies.
Honor God with your bodies. What a strange command, how do we do such a thing in our daily lives? We have often learned that we should not give too much attention to the flesh. But... the human body is a temple wherein the Holy Spirit desires to live. We have to keep that temple clean. Let's be honest, if we do not feel at home in our own body, why would the Holy Spirit feel at home? Let's make sure we have a clean house! Give your addictions, cravings, bad habits, pains and frustrations to Him and ask the Lord to do a work of renewal.
Together we are the body of Christ on earth. If we do not do what He did when He walked around on this earth, how can His name be glorified?