Sunday, August 28, 2011

Nourishing the Temple of the Holy Spirit

Today, at the beach my friend complained that I hardly ever updated my blog and I should write something. So I am going to write about what I’m studying right now. Two weeks ago I started a Family Herbalism course. It includes diet, preventative medicine, and using herbs as treatments for minor illnesses. The first two chapters teach about the importance of food and the history of different covenants in the Bible.  It has opened my eyes to the importance of taking care of our bodies.

Food and sleep are two of the most essentials needs for physical life. Someone can survive without money, friends, medicine, or clothes, but no one can survive without sleep or food. Food is what builds our bodies and keeps our brains active. It seems that humans should closely monitor their food intake in order to extend their lives. In a day when people spend tens of thousands of dollars to keep themselves alive for another couple of months, it would seem to follow that they would try to prevent themselves from deteriating as much as possible. Yet this is not the case.

Approximately 1/3 of Americans are overweight. Clearly, health is not Americans’ main concern; instead we spend far more time, money, and energy developing new ways to extend our lives after we become sick. It seems to make more sense to spend the money and time developing ways to stop the sickness before it even begins.

In Exodus 36-39, God gives the Israelites specific instructions on how to build the tabernacle, which would be God’s dwelling place. God instructs them in the smallest details, the color of the fabric, how many loops to put on curtains, and large to make the tables. God explained every minute detail to His satisfactions. Undoubtedly, God cares about the physical appearance of His dwelling place.

In the New Covenant after Jesus died, believer’s bodies replaced the tabernacle. After Jesus died on the cross the veil in the temple that separated sinful people from the seat of God in the Holy of Holies was torn from top to bottom (Matthew 27:51). This symbolized that Christians could approach Him in prayer at any time.  1 Corinthians 6:19 states, “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.” The temple in believers is no less important than the tabernacle of the Old Covenant. Therefore, Christians should take care of their bodies as temples of the Lord.

When God created Adam and Eve He gave them all the plants and fruit in the Garden to eat other than the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil (Genesis 2). When Adam and Eve ate the fruit of the forbidden tree  (Genesis 3) they brought sin into the world and humans began to eat meat but with restrictions. In Genesis 9:4 when God makes His covenant with Noah He says, “But you shall not eat flesh with it life, that is its blood.”  Later on God in Leviticus God gives His people specific guidelines regarding which animals they can eat, clean, and the ones they were forbidden to eat, the unclean animals. In Acts 10 the apostle Peter had a vision in which a sheet fell from heaven with all kinds of animals, including the unclean. A voice said, “Rise, Peter, kill and eat.”

Throughout the Bible God has taken an active role in diet. Since He created the body He knows what foods we need and do not need. Christians should therefore not assume that food is a “free” issue to do what we please with it. God has provided principles for us to live by. If our desire is to “run with endurance the race that is set before us” (Hebrews 12:1) then we need to fuel ourselves with nourishing food. 

1 comment:

Hannah Beckett said...

Yay Anna! With words too! Imagine that :)