A Christian Guide to Body Stewardship, Diet and Exercise

Chapter 1: Biblical Foundations: Human Body, Fitness and Care 13 discipline of fasting; prohibitions on sexual immorality and drunkenness) and that bodily discipline produces a disposition to discipline that is transferable to other areas. Summary • God’s Word, not cultural or self-perception, must ultimately determine how we understand and use our bodies. • A proper theology of the body is dependent upon accurate biblical interpretation, including reading verses within their respective contexts. • God created us as embodied image bearers. Though our bodies, like all creation, bear the effects of the Fall, redemption comes through God the Son embodied. • We were made by God to glorify him through worship, which includes the use of our physical bodies. Therefore, sanctification necessarily incorporates what we do with our bodies (e.g., physical acts of worship, the ordinances of the church, self-control, service). • The claim that a Christian should be a good steward of his body is an extension of the claim that everything belongs to God. • Exercise can help to develop a mindset and promote habits of perseverance where we will actually gravitate toward dealing with the hard things of life in a healthy way. • A properly stewarded body is more effective and typically more enduring in ministry, and venues of physical activity provide contexts for evangelism.