Principle 5. Use the body as Jesus did

The best model for using the body for spiritual discipline is the Lord Jesus Christ. In fact, another concept for soul training is to live as Jesus lived. Thus, we do not pray for the sake of prayer. Rather, we pray because Jesus prayed. It is not enough to know the right doctrines or do the right routines. We must order our lives as Jesus did, in unbroken communion with the Father and in selfless ministry to others.

This leads to startling implications. For example, I am not saying we wear sashes, tunics and sandals as Jesus did. But after we are baptized as adults, do we go fasting in the wilderness for 40 days? I do not have the answer. But there is an issue here, somewhere.

Principle 6. Therefore, keep your body in tiptop condition.

If our body is God’s gift to bring us closer to Him, then it follows we must take good care of that gift. Time and again, I quip, “Can you imagine Jesus being overweight, ailing with hypertension and diabetes?” Of course not. To be fair, people in His day weren’t as sedentary as we are today. They didn’t have processed food. They didn’t have Grab or Uber.  And of course they didn’t have Netflix.

Intimacy with God is therefore the best reason why we keep our bodies in excellent health. In so doing, we keep our minds sharp, our spirits up, and our emotions even. In practical terms, this means getting enough sleep, watching what you eat, and keep on moving. If the Christian is likened to a soldier or athlete, you can expect either one to be constantly alert and healthy. The soldier, so he can win the battle. The athlete, so he can get the gold medal.

Therefore, be sanctified to the Lord, in body as well as in spirit.

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